If you have gone near any of my social media channels in the past week you are well aware of the fact that last week I had the incredible opportunity to do a keynote in Las Vegas in front of thousands of people in the main theater at the Cosmopolitan Hotel. That in itself would have been more than enough to be something special but when you add in that I was asked to do the keynote that was the opening act for Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak then it made the day into a once in a lifetime experience.
I took the stage around 9:20am to do my 40 minute keynote and when I was finished I left the stage on took a seat in the front row like a kid on Christmas morning waiting for Woz. He took the stage with a keynote that lasted about an hour and when he was done he walked off stage to the expected roaring applause. I clapped with the crowd feeling like my secret hopes of just say hi to him were slipping through my fingers. But I got so much more than I ever hoped for because as the applause died down the conference organizers quickly ushered my wife and I out of the audience, through the backstage area, down a back staircase and down to the green room under the stage. As we walked up to the door of the green room I heard Woz’s voice say “Sure I have time. I’d love to meet him.”. My wife and I were ushered into the green room and I found myself face to face with Woz and his wife. I am sure than in real life none of this was as dramatic and cinematic as my memory makes it out to be but I’m a creative director as what else would you expect?
I will admit that it wasn’t my finest moment for being cool and collected as I blurted out something about how my Woz edition Apple IIgs had changed my life. We stood and talked for a few minutes and then pulled a small metal container out of the pocket of his jacket while asking me “Steve, do you like riddles?”. A little off guard I answered ‘sure’ and looked down to see that Woz was handing me his business card. This is a ritual exchange I have probably done thousands of times over the course of my career but I have NEVER seen a business card like this.
His business card is made from a single piece of metal that was cut and engraved with all of his information. When you hold it the card is very reminiscent of the videos I have seen of the unibody of the MacBook Pro where you see it being but from a single block of aluminum. His phone number is actually a riddle you have to be able to solve if you want to call him (sorry but I Photoshop’s out most of the riddle and his other information to respect his privacy). I thought this was genius because if you are a celebrity and you want to give your card out to someone but how can you still another layer to it be sure on the best people can call you. Being a designer I am not I am ever going to solve the riddle even though I have a few ideas on what it could be – plus even if I do solve it then I have to think up a reason of what I would say if I got him on the phone since I barely made it through our first meeting.