Padding Out your Marketing Message with some Light Relief

This is an actual letter from an Austin woman sent to American company Proctor and Gamble regarding their feminine products. She really gets rolling after the first paragraph. It’s PC Magazine’s 2007 editors’ choice for best webmail-award-winning letter.

Dear Mr. Thatcher, 

 I have been a loyal user of your ‘Always’ maxi pads for over 20 yearsand I appreciate many of their features. Why, without the LeakGuard Core or Dri-Weave absorbency, I’d probably never go horseback riding or salsa dancing, and I’d certainly steer clear of running up and down the beach in tight, white shorts. But my favorite feature has to be your revolutionary Flexi-Wings. Kudos on being the only company smart enough to realize how crucial it is that maxi pads be aerodynamic. I can’t tell you how safe and secure I feel each month knowing there’s a little F-16 in my pants. 

 Have you ever had a menstrual period, Mr. Thatcher? I’m guessing you haven’t. Well, my time of the month is starting right now. As I type, I can already feel hormonal forces violently surging through my body. Just a few minutes from now, my body will adjust and I’ll be transformed into what my husband likes to call ‘an inbred hillbilly with knife skills.’ Isn’t the human body amazing? 

 As Brand Manager in the Feminine-Hygiene Division, you’ve no doubt seen quite a bit of research on what exactly happens during your customer’s monthly visits from ‘Aunt Flo’. Therefore, you must know about the bloating, puffiness, and cramping we endure, and about our intense mood swings, crying jags, and out-of-control behavior. You surely realize it’s a tough time for most women.  

The point is, sir, you of all people must realize that America is just crawling with homicidal maniacs in Capri pants… Which brings me to the reason for my letter. Last month, while in the throes of cramping so painful I wanted to reach inside my body and yank out my uterus, I opened an Always maxi-pad, and there, printed on the adhesive backing, were these words: ‘Have a Happy Period.’ 

Are you f—— kidding me? What I mean is, does any part of your tiny middle-manager brain really think happiness – actual smiling, laughing happiness, is possible during a menstrual period? Did anything mentioned above sound the least bit pleasurable? Well, did it, James? FYI, unless you’re some kind of sick S&M freak, there will never be anything ‘happy’ about a day in which you have to jack yourself up on Motrin and Kahlua and lock yourself in your house just so you don’t march down to the local Walgreen’s armed with a hunting rifle and a sketchy plan to end your life in a blaze of glory. 

 For the love of God, pull your head out, man! If you have to slap a moronic message on a maxi pad, wouldn’t it make more sense to say something that’s actually pertinent, like ‘Put down the Hammer’ or ‘Vehicular Manslaughter is Wrong’, Sir, please inform your Accounting Department that, effective  immediately, there will be an $8 drop in monthly profits, for I have   chosen to take my maxi-pad business elsewhere. And though I will certainly miss your Flex-Wings, I will not for one minute miss your brand of condescending bullshit.  

 And that’s a promise I will keep. Always. . . 


Wendi Aarons
 Austin , TX


  • Bonnie David

    Interesting. As a woman, I can say that she is exaggerating or the word ‘happy’ is triggering her to react in a certain way. Now with the rise of holistic remedies, there are ways to alleviate a woman’s pre-menstrual cramps or the mood swings for that matter. There is nothing wrong with saying ‘have a happy period’ as a marketing incentive. Love how you crafted the headline. The message ‘have a happy period’ indeed brings some light relief in spite of the woman being overly dramatic in her letter.