The Philolexian Society
The Lion's Court
New York, NY 10027
September 12, 1997
Center Helene Curtis, Inc.
325 North Wells Street
Chicago, IL 60610
Dear Ms. Curtis,
Last evening, the general membership of the Philolexian Society,
Columbia University's student organization dedicated to improving
the rhetorical skills and literary awareness of its members, voted
to name your Suave moisturizing conditioner the official moisturizing
conditioner of the society. We make this designation in recognition
of the outstanding contributions to American literature made by
the author of the blurb found on Suave's bottle. It states, "Suave
makes your hair so beautiful, there's no need to spend more."
We believe that the above statement represents an entirely new
form of literary construction, which we would like to term a "semi-sequitur."
You did not fall prey to the mindless beast of conventionality
by finishing your Suave-makes-your-hair-so-beautiful declaration
with a trite, forseeable conclusion like "it shines!"
or "you'll look like a movie star." Rather, you brought
into your second clause an entirely new idea, related to Suave's
impliedly low price, especially as compared to competitors whose
products might make our hair more beautiful than yours does. This
new construction allows you to combine several different and ostensibly
unrelated advertising ideas into a single sentence, and thus teaches
us the lesson of brevity, which is one which some of us loquacious
Philolexians need to learn.
I have been charged with the duty of informing you of this designation,
which we hope you will deem an honor. Though the Philolexian Society,
established in 1802, is Columbia's oldest student organization,
and one of the oldest literary societies in the country, it has
never before seen fit to name an official moisturizing conditioner.
The undeniable kindred spirit between your company and our society,
manifest in Suave moisturizing conditioner, drove us to break
all precedent in this case. We hope that it will also facilitate
friendly contact between us in the future. I thank you for your
patience and wish you a pleasant fall.