Reading the sign on the building; McMillian Artists and Associates; diabetes walked into the world leader in public relations firms. Diabetes stopped at the reception desk.
“May I help you?”
“Yes. I was hoping to become a client, is there someone I can speak to?”
The receptionist made a few calls and in a few minutes a woman walked through the door and led diabetes into a huge conference room. She was dressed smarty and professional. She carried a pad and a folder.
“Hi, I’m Anne, how can I help you?”
“Hi, my name is diabetes, and I think I could use a PR firm to help me in my public perception.”
“Diabetes? THE diabetes. You are actually THE diabetes?”
“Yes I am.”
“Very impressive. You’ve been around a long time, you sure you need us?”
“Oh yes. There are many misconceptions about me. How people get me, the difference to my sub-parts of Type 1 and Type 2, what people can eat or not eat, and there is so much more.”
“You realize how expensive this can be, yes?”
“I do not think money is an object as I generated over 145 billion dollars just in the United States last year alone.”
“Those who have me don’t think so. Many people think it’s easy being as popular as I am but they have no idea……….I’m a pretty devastating disease you know?”
Anne pursed her lips…..and leaned back in her chair.
“People usually look pretty healthy. Especially when kids have it. They are running and playing, it’s a misconception to think that they ARE devastated.”
“So you now know why I’m here. Kids will do whatever it takes to ‘get back out there’ but make no mistake, if they are not careful, I will ruin them.”
“In the world of P.R…….we call that an image problem.”
“Well my image certainly needs work.”
The two sitting across from each other in the board room just stared at each other. Anne knew the amount of money diabetes could bring to her agency would be astronomical but she also knew that with all the problems associated with diabetes, it could all be a futile attempt.
“Look I know I come with a lot of baggage, and THAT’s EXACTLY why I’m here. You are supposed to be the biggest and best agency in the world; if you cannot help me, I’m doomed.”
“What exactly do you want?”
“I want people to know the myths and facts about diabetes. I want to have my stories told so people understand what I am about so they learn. If they are stuck with me, they need to take care of themselves. I can be a horror show. That is not some false noble attempt—–I CAN BE devastating. People NEED TO KNOW. There is a cure out there as well, I want you to do all you can…….to…….help me go out of business.”
“So let me make sure I have this correctly. You want us to educate the world about you, teach the world about you and also paint a picture that will show the world that even though many people look healthy, you can be devastating and there needs to be an all out push to find a cure for you so you exist no longer. That about right?”
“I think what you are asking for does not exist.”
“So you won’t take me on?”
“I honestly do not think we can help, I’m sorry.”
“Don’t apologize…….it’s been that way for over a hundred years. Ever since they found insulin, everyone thought I would go away. That they were cured. But I’m still here.”
“I AM sorry.”
“Not as sorry as those who live with me…….they have been looking for those answers as long as I have been around.”
“Continue looking, I guess.”
“The world is too.”
I am a diabetes dad.
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