This reminded me of an excerpt from Benjamin Franklin: An American Life by Walter Isaacson
When he was a young printer, a friend starting out in the hat-making business wanted a sign for his shop. As Franklin recounted:
He composed it in these words, “John Thompson, hatter, makes and sells hats for ready money,” with a figure of a hat subjoined. But he thought he would submit it to his friends for their amendments.
The first he showed it to thought the word “Hatter” tautologous, because followed by the words “makes hats,” which showed he was a hatter. It was struck out.
The next observed that the word “makes” might as well be omitted, because his customers would not care who made the hats. . .He struck it out.
A third said he thought the words “for ready money” were useless, as it was not the custom of the place to sell on credit. Everyone who purchased expected to pay. They were parted with; and the inscription now stood, “John Thompson sells hats.”
“Sells hats!” says his next friend; “why, nobody will expect you to give them away. What then is the use of that word?” It was stricken out, and “hats” followed, the rather as there was one painted on the board.
So his inscription was reduced ultimately to “John Thompson,” with the figure of a hat subjoined.”