This is a short story about a little cigar company that could, and will continue to, because we do the right thing.
It began with the Grimalkin, a name that bore no resemblance to anything else on the market. There came a time when it was pointed out to me that the theme on the cigar might play a bit too closely to that of another cigar maker who works in the same factory. Simple solution for me. Realize that it might mistakenly be construed that way and change it to La Musa. Simple and effective solution.
When I first named the larger size of the Emilio AF1 I called it a BMF. I later learned that another manufacturer had a cigar with a similar suite of letters. I respect that manufacturer... alot. Easy fix. It's now called the Toro Grande. No harm. No foul.
At IPCPR I was approached by a cigar maker about the use of the name Suave, as in our Emilio AF Suave. He was considering naming a cigar Suave, and expressed concern that my prior use might affect that release. Know what my response was? "It's a Spanish word dude. Use it. You're not calling yours Emilio, right?" What the heck do I care if there's no deliberate attempt to play of the Emilio brand?
Then last week I received a call that the word "Quetzal" on our Los Regalos had a prior usage. A dear friend made a few calls and voila! The answer was "let them sell the first production and then not use it again." No hostility. No offense taken because none was intended. A gracious and gentlemanly response. I appreciated it.
Know what? We have enough enemies attacking us from the outside. We shouldn't spend so much time, money, and energy attacking each other over trivial crap and honest oversights. Divide and conquer will play into the hands of the anti tobacco folks. We need to be far more united.
All these things were handled just as they should have been. Quietly, without a fuss, and at little to no expense.
My sincere appreciation to those in this brotherhood that get it. And a cautionary tale for those who don't. How about we not let our egos and pride divide us so that we become even more vulnerable to outside attack?