“Talk Like A Pirate Day” At Our Krispy Kreme Stores In Texas Was Something To Squawk About.

If you’re familiar with our Glazing Saddles/Krispy Kreme stores in Texas then you already know about our Hot Light, our Original Glazed Doughnuts right off the line, our other varieties of doughnuts, our kolaches, beverages and collectibles. But the one thing you might remember even more than all that if you’ve visited one of our stores in Austin (2), San Marcos, San Antonio (2), Laredo, and El Paso (2) is that we have fun in what we do and you’ll see smiles and hear laughter when you’re in our Krispy Kremes.

Never was the fun factor more evident than Thursday, September 19th which was “Talk Like A Pirate Day” where if you dressed up like a pirate and walked the plank into our stores you would receive a wonderful bounty of a FREE dozen Original Glazed Doughnuts to feed your parrot and you didn’t even have to lift your sword.

It may not have been a day that will live in infamy but it was a day that a lot of happy pirates will not soon forget. We had crowds of “AARRRGGGHHH” –sayers and we gave away lots of doughnuts. Over 500 dozen in just one store alone!

And we took pictures as you’ll see below. I will say they’re truly warm and fuzzy and as you’ll witness, some were fuzzier than others…but hey, we’re doughnut makers, not professional shutterbuggers…but even in soft, shaky focus, you’ll get the picture.

And there were also lots of stories but we’ll just let the pics speak for themselves – BUT WAIT! There is one story I can’t resist sharing. An 80-something lady came in dressed normally and carrying a small bag. She went into the ladies room and when she emerged she was a fully decked out female pirate complete with fish-net stockings! It seems she didn’t want her kids or grandkids see her dress up like that at home because they might not quite understand.

It’s easy to love being a Krispy Kremer. Enjoy the photos.

Krispy Mike

The Best Advice To Give Someone Is The Kind Of Advice You Never Knew You Gave

I don’t know about you but while I have many strong opinions on a very wide variety of subjects I am a bit loath to give life-changing advice to anyone but a select few who ask for it, and a “few” means one or two. And more often than not when I give direct advice to someone they rarely ever follow it that I can tell and this is understood based on my own lack of follow-through on advice that comes my way.

There are real times in your life, however, that things can be changed for the better when something enters your thoughts that you’ve never considered before. For me that time was when a simple yet forceful insult by a clerk in a camera store totally changed the direction of my life which sent me into the film business; morphing into my own advertising agency; and then through a film for Krispy Kreme corporate I eventually became head of marketing for Krispy Kreme; then through opening new doors, it all naturally flowed into a Krispy Kreme franchise adventure in Texas with my business partner Krispy Randy when we launched our first store in Austin 13 years ago. Since that doughnut beginning under our franchise name Glazing Saddles, along with our third partner, Krispy Mark, we’ve opened a second store in Austin, two in San Antonio, one each in Laredo and San Marcos, and two in El Paso where a third store is under construction – as well as construction of our first store McAllen, Texas to open later this summer.

All this has happened for me because a camera store clerk over 45 years ago said, “All you do is talk about going into business for yourself, you’ll never do it…it’s all just a bunch of talk!” At the time I was writing for an ad agency and doing free-lance commercials on the side, all the while telling everyone who would listen that I was going to open my own film business (one of these days). I was bragging actually but hanging on to the security of my writing job while shooting free lance on the side. Even though the clerk’s remark wasn’t in the form of advice, it was taken that way and I walked out of that camera store, went home and wrote a letter of resignation and turned it in to the head of the ad agency the next morning…and with just one film job on my books at the time, I officially went into business for myself.

And with hard work, up’s and down’s, perseverance, and an occasional helping of good luck, it’s all culminated in a very successful Krispy Kreme doughnut business in Texas with solid partners, excellent staff, professional GM’s, Managers and store team members; and above all – loyal customers who come in for an honest treat: a Krispy Kreme doughnut served in a clean, happy place. And as this old world keeps grinding on, it’s nice to be able to get away from it all for a moment with family and friends and just kick back and enjoy a doughnut. A Krispy Kreme doughnut, of course.

I was reminded of my “store clerk advice” story just recently when my wife and I attended a rip-roaring birthday party for our 3-year-old grand daughter, Emma Finch, in Raleigh, NC. Midway through the controlled chaos celebration my son Adam introduced me to his neighbor Scott who was helping his daughter draw animals with chalk on the sidewalk. Adam said, “This is Scott, my neighbor who just completed his degree in Industrial Design…Scott, this is my father, Mike, who is a writer and is also in the Krispy Kreme doughnut business.” With that Adam turned to attend to Emma Finch in her efforts to smash open a piñata as Scott and I exchanged a couple of pleasantries – but he kept looking at me in a way that indicated some sort of puzzlement.

After a long pause he said and blew me away at the same time, “Have you ever heard of a company called Glazing Saddles?” Bear in mind that I’ve just met this guy. Somewhat astonished I replied, “That’s the name of our franchise company in Texas…how’d you know that name…did Adam tell you about it?” “No”, he said, “you and I have met before and you gave me your business card and said something that changed my life.” By now I was figuring the Sangria had more in it than I realized as Scott excitedly continued his story. Years ago Adam and his fiancé Haley were getting married in Raleigh and my wife and I were staying in a wonderful hotel nearby. In the hotel was a restaurant named Herons and our server just happened to be the very Scott I was now talking to at the birthday party.

Scott went on to say that at the time, I asked him if waiting tables was his intended career and he replied that he wanted to be a designer but wasn’t sure about his future right then. Apparently I said something to him as words of encouragement to pursue his dreams and mentioned the name Pentagram Design founded in London in the 60’s by an old friend of mine named Colin Forbes. (Pentagram had become and still is one of the most powerful and recognized design firms in the world designing everything from Bobby Flay’s first restaurant in NY, Mesa Grill, to the logos for BP, and Nissan among many others, along with a huge assortment of consumer product designs).

I suggested to Scott in the restaurant that day that he should check out their story and then gave him my card. That was the last time I saw him until the birthday party. He told me he looked up Pentagram and was so taken with what he learned about the company that he went back to school to finish his industrial design degree, and after a year of study next year in Europe he plans to begin a career in sportswear design. He also said that he still has my card on his desk as a reminder of what took place that day in Herons and later emailed me a picture of the dog-eared card.

I’ve always believed that there is no such thing as a coincidence. When Scott thanked me at the party for my advice I could only think that I really didn’t give him any, but what put the two of us in that place on that day in that restaurant in Raleigh was undoubtedly meant to be.

And by-the-way, I never got a chance to thank that camera store clerk for what he did to my life, so I’ll do it now. Thank you very, very much and if you can find your way to one of our stores in Texas, the doughnuts are on me. All you can eat.

Krispy Mike

Krispy Mike says Hey

Hey from Krispy Mike right out here in Texas. This is my first Krispy Kreme Doughnuts blog for our stores in Texas and I want to let this serve as a notice that I’m not going to try to sell you one Hot Original Glazed doughnut or coffee or cruellers (“tractor tires” to the kids) or anything you’ll find in our stores in Austin, Laredo, San Antonio, El Paso and a new one I’ll tell you about in a minute. No, this blog will kind of run all over the place because that’s how I like  to write. I love writing poetry so don’t be surprised to see one or two blogged out at you. If you don’t like poetry, wait’ll next week and there might be something there for you.Krispy Kreme goes all the way back to 1937 in Winston-Salem, NC so you know there are stories upon stories to tell – and many others that I wouldn’t dare telling, unless I know you better. There will also be stories about our people of which we have many great ones working for us and some who have done some really unusual things outside their Krispy Kreme passion zone. We’ve got one General Manager who in his younger, thinner days was head of the Mexican Olympic Bobsled team! Can you imagine that! Where do you practice bobsledding in Mexico?!

Anyway, hey, guess what’s happening this here Monday morning in San Marcos, Texas, home of the venerable Texas State? Can’t guess? C’mon. Okay, we’re opening a brand, new Krispy Kreme store with our signature Hot Original Glazed Doughnuts, and all our other doughnut varieties, and our new coffees and chilled things and smiles everywhere. We’re right beside a place called Pluckers which seems to be a pretty hot place judging by their parking lot which is always full. I guess they won’t mind my mentioning their name but what the heck, they’re our next door neighbors after all. We’re opening at 6AM and will be open forever after that. See how confident we are.

I have two partners, Krispy Randy and Krispy Mark. Really nice guys, like me, and they have really nice wives, like me – I don’t mean I have “wives”, just one really nice and good one. I don’t know why I got off on that, it just occurred that you might want to know who my partners are, although you really don’t even know who I am, yet. But you will as the ‘blog watch’ ticks forward.

Did you know that the man who started Krispy Kreme started out with his uncle in Paducah, Kentucky, of all places. His name was Vernon Rudolph and he delivered Krispy Kremes in a run-down farm truck for his Uncle, Ishmael Armstrong who, legend has it, acquired the Krispy Kreme name and recipe from a French chef from New Orleans, whose car broke down one day in Paducah and old Ishmael repaired it and as payment the french chef paid him with the doughnut name and the recipe…and the rest is history – and I’m here to tell, there’s a whole lot to the rest of this story. I just happened to think, we buy things with our doughnuts today, that’s our doughnut money and no one seems to mind to accept it, same as cash!

I won’t apologize for rambling, because that’s what I like to do. I grew up In Greensboro, NC many decades ago and so, really, I have grown up with Krispy Kreme since there were two stores right there in my city (which is only 30 miles from Winston-Salem, where the KK corporate headquarters are to this day).

We’ll do some exploring in this blog and I’ll use it as a way to impart some never-heard-before info and also use it to vent if I’m mad on the Monday I write it. I’ll always try to be nice and say what I think, within reason, and let you know more about this very fine company called Krispy Kreme. Now I can only speak about our Texas stores in this blog and about company history, which is fair game as nearly all of it’s true, with some exceptions, of course. Sadly I’ve been told by Krispy Randy’s wife, who knows a lot about social media and stuff, that few if any of you out there will read this first blog. So if you’re reading it now and are not related to me, even if it’s just one of you, then I’m good with that. Send me a note and let me know what you think, and if you have questions, I may even answer them eventually. Look, lemme tell ya, I’m just tryin’ to see what blogging’s all about.

Gotta run. Going over to a gigantic outdoor sporting goods store called Cabela’s right here next to  where I’m writing this in Buda, Texas (they pronounce it “Buuudah” with hard emphasis on those “UUUU’s” – more like ByouDah, I think). Going to meet my partners Krispy Mark and Krispy Randy where we’re going to buy some bullets, but no guns – too dangerous.

Next Time!

Krispy Mike

PS: Crassly I say, THE HOT LIGHT’S ON IN SAN MARCOS! Couldn’t help saying that.  km