Witness a fine example of good, old-fashioned business success: Dal LaMagna, owner of Tweezerman Corp., a 15-year-old company with 85 employees and annual revenues approaching $12 million. So why, in a front page article, did the venerable Wall Street Journal portray the Harvard M.B.A. as something of an eccentric? Is it yet another case of the beauty industry not being taken seriously, or is it something about LaMagna himself? In case you haven’t heard, LaMagna has ventured beyond the boardroom to pursue a higher calling. He’s running for Congress as the democratic party’s candidate for the House of Representatives for District 3 in Long Island, N.Y.
The beginnings of his beauty implements company were humble enough, if not quite traditional. As the article reports, LaMagna’s career began while he was sunbathing nude on a California rooftop back in the ’70s. It was after he picked up some splinters in his hindquarters that LaMagna was moved to build a better pair of tweezers than he saw on the market. “I was bent over looking through my legs into the mirror,” he explained to the reporter before stopping himself for sounding uncongressional. To garner publicity for his budding company, the article continues, LaMagna stuffed Slyrofoam under his shirt at a tradeshow and stabbed himself with tweezers, he filled his nostrils with hair to promote the Tweezerman rotary nose-hair clipper, and hired Tweezermen and Tweezerettes to sing songs like “Boogie-Woogie Tweezerman.”
Despite suggestions to the contrary, LaMagna remains a serious contender for his district’s congressional seat.