BY CHARLES MEMMINGER – Three years ago I got it in my head to try to get a federal trademark on the phrase I invented, or at least thought of first: “Get Life On.” It struck me as being incredibly inspirational, like other great inspirational slogans throughout time like “Remember the Alamo!”, “Tippecanoe and Tyler Too!”, “Let Mikey Try It!” and “Read My Lips, No New Taxes!”
Most people hire an attorney when they are trying to get a federal trademark but I thought it would be fun and instructional to try to slog my way through that massive bureaucracy that is the United States Patent and Trademark Office on my own.
As it turned out, it wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be. They even assign you a free government-paid consultant to help you along. My man was in India, I believe, a friendly chap although a little rusty in the English language department. What he lacked in language he made up in languish, as I failed to grasp the most basic instructions he gave me. (“I’m telling you Mr. Charley sir that if you are not filing that Form 3.56A/21 in the nearest future it will be a very, very bad thing, indeed.”)
Hardly nine months and a few thousand dollars later I was the proud owner of three words of the English language, “Get Life On”, the cutest little catchphrase ever. I planned to use it as my official columnist slogan but it eventually became my slogan for living. I think I was ahead of the pop culture curve on this. I believe everyone eventually will have their own official personal slogan, a sort of verbal version of a tattoo except that you don’t have to have a doctor remove it when you get tired of it.
Knowing of all the cyber pirates out there on the Internet, I also registered four “Get Life On” domains with the extensions .com, .org, .net and .tv. Then I started Googling “Get Life On” every day waiting to catch someone using MY words so I could sic my attorney on them and bleed them financially dry. Thankfully, which is to say, unfortunately, nobody did try to steal my three little words and so I have continued to own them over the past three years. At one point, a few years ago I did try to find a big national corporation or organization to sell or license the phrase to.
The idea was that, if a company comes up with a nifty catchphrase or slogan the odds are someone else already owns it or some cyber pirate already has snagged all the Internet domain names. Instead of a company going through the lengthy, yet amusing, process of getting a trademark and registering websites, they could buy “Get Life On” and get the whole package for a reasonable price. It was just about then, I recall, that there was a loud thumping, whumping noise across the country which was the national economy falling into the dumpster. (In 1980, I caused the world silver market to crash when I bought three rolls of silver dimes and did the same thing to the POG market when I had a mere 125,000 of them printed.)
But now that President Obama has saved the country from defaulting on our national debt and investors are dancing in the streets I figured it’s time to put “Get Life On” on the market again and maybe make a few bucks in the process. And that’s why if you go on eBay you will find my three little word, my precious little “Get Life On” up for sale or license for a mere $50,000. I think the price is exceedingly reasonable considering someone is trying to sell the trademark “Euro Gold Bank” and four web domain addresses for the cool “buy it now” price of $21 million.
Are they mad? Other pricey trademarks for sale on eBay include “Top Fuel” for $5 million, “Café Dad” for $2 million, “Blond Giraffe” for $850,000 and “Your Home Is Your Haven” for $500,000. Despite their high asking prices, none of those slogans are as cool and inspirational as “Get Life On.” Your Home is Your Haven? Not if you got an electronic prison bracelet on your ankle and you can’t leave your yard. How about “Your Home Is Your Hoosegow”?
What makes “Get Life On” such a good deal is that bidding starts at only $25,000 and as of … hold on … let me check … as of now … there are … let’s see … no bids on it. But it’s only been posted for a day. Corporation boardrooms across the country no doubt soon will be humming as word of such a great phrase suddenly appearing on the market. Some smart company no doubt will snap up “Get Life On” for the “Buy It Now” price of $50,000.
The great thing about eBay is that it costs hardly anything to put up something for sale, no matter if it’s for $1.25 or $21 million. eBay gets a cut of the action if the thing sells. eBay also gives you a chance to donate part of the proceeds from you sale to any number of charities. I’ve chosen to automatically donate 10 percent of whatever “Get Life On” brings in to the American Cancer Society.
“Get Life On” not only is inspirational and positive, it’s a bit retro, like Marvin Gay’s 1970’s hit song, “Let’s Get It On.” And I think we can all agree “Get Life On” is much better than Nike’s “Just Do It,” which is dangerously ambiguous. I mean, “Get Life On” encourages you to start living today, get the most out of life while “Just Do It” is what mob bosses tell their hitmen.
Go to this eBay to see the “Get Life On” posting or put in your own personal bid:
And remember, even during tough times (which are allegedly behind us now) we all have to remember to GET LIFE ON!