Popcorn as Metaphor

A bowl of popcorn


For the holidays this year, we sent our clients a simple gift: popcorn. Not the fancy overpopped variety housed in a ridiculously-large tin, but a 2-pound bag of small unpopped kernels from K & K Popcorn in Shellsburg, Iowa, tucked into a simple kraft carton.

You’ll have to take my word for it when I tell you that this is the best popcorn I have ever eaten. Indeed, the kernels ARE small compared to commercially-grown, genetically-altered varieties. But the combination of textures and tastes delivers the most authentic popcorn-eating experience imaginable. And within the story of K & K Popcorn we found a metaphor that has set the course for Otherwise in the coming year.

On the K & K Popcorn website, they tell their story:

“K & K Popcorn is native to the prehistoric Americas. It was shared by American Indians with a pioneer family in the 1850’s and enjoyed for generations. But, by the mid 1970’s it was nearly forgotten. A family member returning from a career in the army discovered the last remaining popcorn in a fruit jar. He saved a handful for planting and popped the rest.

“In the early 1990’s Gene Mealhow, a farmer and soil consultant, was brought in to develop cultivation techniques that would make the ancient popcorn commercially viable. Through the project the Mealhow family developed a true passion for the popcorn – so they bought the business. Under the careful control of Gene, his wife Lynn and the family, popcorn lovers around the world are rediscovering real popcorn taste.”

So here are our watchwords for twoohoheight….

Look to preserve what is authentic and true. Marginalize impostors.
Find the new in old places. Make new places, too.
Collaborate and incubate whenever possible.
Use the power of provocative visual design to foster change.

And pop a bowl of K & K Popcorn whenever you need a boost.

Photo credit: calamity_sal