I’VE GOT better things TO do than CRITICIZE THEM

The bracelets handed out to students in Iowa were supposed to carry an anti-drug message, but may have given some students the wrong idea.

A New York state company will stop production of Red Ribbon Week
bracelets and discard its remaining inventory of the rubber wrist bands
because of an unintended message printed on them.

The bracelets,
handed out last week to students in the WACO school district in
southeast Iowa, carried the anti-drug slogan "I’ve Got BETTER Things to
DO than DRUGS."

The issue was the unintended message of the all-uppercase words: Better Do Drugs.

Mark
Taxel, executive vice president of Hauppauge, N.Y.-based Positive
Promotions, said no one noticed how the words looked on the bracelets
before they were distributed. Only two complaints were received about
the bracelets, he said.

Taxel said the company doesn’t want to
put out a message that could be misconstrued. He said a new bracelet
would be produced in all capital letters. [Link]

Perhaps the company needs to produce several versions of the bracelets:

For the student dealer: "I’VE GOT better things to do than DRUGS."

For his rival dealer: "I’VE GOT BETTER things to do than DRUGS."

For the glue- and aerosol-sniffing student: "I’VE GOT BETTER THINGS to do THAN DRUGS."

For the lonely, depressed student: "I’VE GOT better things TO DO than DRUGS."

For the rich, shopaholic student: "I’VE GOT better THINGS to do than drugs."

For her best friend: "I’VE GOT BETTER THINGS to do than drugs."

For the busy, high-achieving student: "I’VE GOT better THINGS TO DO than drugs."

For the grammar-challenged, forever-dieting student: "I’VE GOT better THINgs to do than drugs."

For the school janitor: "I’VE GOT better things TO DO thAn dRUGs."

If you enjoyed this piece, you'll love Melvin's novel Bala Takes the Plunge, available in North America through Amazon.com and McNallyRobinson.com You can also find it at major bookstores in India and Sri Lanka or online at FlipKart, IndiaPlaza, FriendsofBooks or other sites. A number of readers have written reviews of the novel. An excerpt of the novel can be read here.

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