Don't Mess with Texas is a slogan for a campaign aimed at reducing littering on Texas roadways by the Texas Department of Transportation. The phrase "Don't Mess with Texas" is prominently shown on road signs on major highways, television, radio and in print advertisements. The campaign is credited with reducing litter on Texas highways roughly 72% between 1987 and 1990.The campaign's target market was 18- to 35-year-old males, which was statistically shown to be the most likely to litter. While the slogan was not originally intended to become a statewide cultural phenomenon, it did.
Beyond its immediate role in reducing litter, the slogan has been popularly appropriated by Texans. The phrase has become "an identity statement, a declaration of Texas swagger".Though the origin of the slogan is not well known outside of Texas, it appears on countless items of tourist souvenirs. Since the phrase is a federally registered trademark, the department has tried at times to enforce its trademark rights with cease and desist letters, but has had very limited success. The slogan is the title of the book, Don’t Mess With Texas: The Story Behind the Legend.
"Don't Mess with Texas" has been awarded a plaque on the Madison Avenue Walk of Fame and a place in the Advertising Hall of Fame, a distinction given to only two slogans annually.
"Don't Mess with Texas" is also the official motto of the Virginia-class submarine USS Texas.
In 2011 the result of a public vote for the best "Don't Mess with Texas" ad over the last 25 years was revealed, the winner was one created by the Commemorative Air Force (then called the Confederate Air Force).The ad involved the CAF's Boeing B-17 "Sentimental Journey" pursuing and retaliating against a truck from which trash was thrown.
In 1985 the Texas Department of Transportation (TXDOT) asked Mike Blair and Tim McClure of GSD&M to create a slogan for an anti-littering campaign. At the time the state of Texas spent about $20 million annually to clean litter from highways. McClure said that "bubbas in pickup trucks" who regularly littered beer cans and other items out of vehicle windows and ordinary Texans who believed that littering was a "God-given right" were targets of the advertising campaign. McClure said that he created the slogan when he saw garbage while walking near his house. Emanuella Grinberg of CNN said that McClure had "an eleventh hour 'aha' moment" when, after looking at the trash, he recalled his mother telling him that his room was messy. "McClure said 'It occurred to me that the only time I'd heard the word litter was in reference to dogs. Mess seemed like it would resonate better.'"
The creators initially had difficulty convincing TXDOT to adopt the slogan. The creators said that the administrators were "buzz-cutted, conservative kind of characters." The creators joked that the board members' average age was 107. McClure recalled that "The crowd was sprinkled with 'Keep America Beautiful' and 'Keep Texas Beautiful' folks, and our audience is 18-to-24 young males." McClure added that "The 'Keep Texas Beautiful' lady said, 'Can we at least say please?' I said, 'No ma'am, you cannot use the line if you put please in front of it.' If not for the vision of Don Clark, the then Director of Travel and Information Division of the Texas Highway Department, the slogan would have never been used. Clark went ahead with the slogan without the support of the TXDOT administrators. After the first televised ad with Stevie Ray Vaughan aired, Clark jokes that he went to work the next day and was unsure if he would be fired. TXDOT decided to ask the public for comment and there was a resounding positive result. "
The campaign began in 1985 with a series of bumper stickers. In 1986 the slogan premiered its first television advertisement, featuring Stevie Ray Vaughan, at the 50th Annual Cotton Bowl Classic on January 1, 1986, singing the "Eyes of Texas" with the line "Don't Mess with Texas" added at the end of the song.Since then, numerous musicians, athletes, celebrities and other famous Texans have appeared in "Don't Mess with Texas" radio and television public service announcements, including:
In a 12-year period over 26 television spots appeared.
Due to the budget cuts of the Great Recession, TxDOT has expanded the use of the licence to sell "Don't Mess With Texas" related souvenirs in "state run rest areas, and travel information centers" in order to fill in its budget gaps. Until recently, the organization was forbidden to do so due to federal regulations.
Since 2000, TXDOT has contacted over 100 companies and organizations with cease and desist letters regarding the unauthorized use of the trademark phrase. State officials claim that protecting the trademark helps the state preserve the slogan's anti-littering message.
Stephen "Stevie" Ray Vaughan was an American musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer, best known as the guitarist and frontman of the blues rock band Double Trouble. Although his mainstream career only spanned seven years, he is considered to be one of the most iconic and influential musicians in the history of blues music.
Texas Flood is the debut studio album by the American blues rock band Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble, released on June 13, 1983 by Epic Records. The album was named after a cover featured on the album, "Texas Flood", which was first recorded by blues singer Larry Davis in 1958. Produced by the band and recording engineer Richard Mullen, Texas Flood was recorded in the space of three days at Jackson Browne's personal recording studio in Los Angeles. Vaughan wrote six of the album's ten tracks.
Got Milk? is an American advertising campaign encouraging the consumption of milk, which was created by the advertising agency Goodby Silverstein & Partners for the California Milk Processor Board in 1993, and was later licensed for use by milk processors and dairy farmers. It launched in 1993 with the now-famous "Aaron Burr" television commercial, directed by Michael Bay. The national campaign, run by MilkPEP added the "got milk?" logo to its "Milk Mustache" ads beginning in 1995. In January 2014, MilkPEP discontinued its Milk Mustache and got milk? advertisements, and launched a new campaign with the tagline "Milk Life". The "got milk?" campaign continues in California and the "got milk?" trademark is being licensed to food and merchandise companies for U.S. and international sales. The campaign has been credited with greatly increasing milk sales in California, although not necessarily nationwide.
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Think different is an advertising slogan used from 1997 to 2002 by Apple Computer, Inc., now named Apple, Inc. The campaign was created by the Los Angeles office of advertising agency TBWA\Chiat\Day. The slogan has been widely taken as a response to IBM's slogan "Think." It was used in a television advertisement, several print advertisements, and several TV promos for Apple products.
Double Trouble is an American blues rock band from Austin, Texas, formed by guitarist/singer Stevie Ray Vaughan in 1978. The group was active throughout the 1980s and contributed to reviving the blues, inspiring many later blues and rock musicians. Formed in Austin, Texas, by 1985 the group consisted of Vaughan, Chris Layton (drums), Tommy Shannon (bass), and eventually Reese Wynans (keyboards). While with Vaughan the band was billed Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble. Rooted in blues and rock music, the group worked in many genres ranging from ballads to soul, often incorporating jazz and other elements.
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Keep Calm and Carry On was a motivational poster produced by the British government in 1939 in preparation for World War II. The poster was intended to raise the morale of the British public, threatened with widely predicted mass air attacks on major cities. Although 2.45 million copies were printed, and although the Blitz did in fact take place, the poster was only rarely publicly displayed and was little known until a copy was rediscovered in 2000 at Barter Books, a bookshop in Alnwick. It has since been re-issued by a number of private companies, and has been used as the decorative theme for a range of products.
On Monday, August 27, 1990, American musician Stevie Ray Vaughan was killed in a helicopter crash near East Troy, Wisconsin, at age 35. He was one of the most influential blues guitarists of the 1980s, described by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as "the second coming of the blues".
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