The Ruofs Story
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RUOFS (Stands for: Ruland's Used Office Furniture Store)
RUOFS was rescued from Elk Grove Meats - who were about to throw him out. Steve Ruland brought him back to the 16th street store a little over 18 years ago.
Steve begins putting messages on RUOFS and in no time RUOFS became one of Sacramento's most recognized icons. RUOFS was once stolen by some college kids. When this happened, his theft became the lead story on all three network newscasts, and he was on the front page of the Sacramento Bee's Metro section. Because of all the publicity, the kids dropped him off a block from the store and called to tell us where he was.
If you head South on I-5 where the highway goes up level with the Sacramento River, just past Sutterville Road, you can see RUOFS's brother sitting on top of a house boat. RUOFS has been boating, sky diving, in many parades, and seen in various parts of the city for the last 18 years.
For a $200 donation that goes to the Sacramento Rotary Club Community Projects, you can have a side of beef for the day. You can have RUOFS say what you want and have him come to your home or place of business.
Printed in The Sacramento Bee, December 9 , 1990:
By: Bob Sylva
Steve Ruland can talk a lick. He likes to think of himself as as a conscientious businessman preserving the planet's limited resources. Ruland sells used office furniture. He prefers the term "recycles".
Ruland is earnest, glib, adept. Along with being a persuasive salesman, he is something of a canny promoter. In a bearish economy, he hears palmy hoofbeats on the street. Ruland, once you get him going, can condense chewy ambiguity to a platitude, can make hamburger sound like top sirloin.
Ruland is in rare form now. He is talking about his marketing gimmick, his broad-shouldered business vehicle that is going to trample him to greener pastures. Listen: "he's kind of tongue in cheek. He knows he is not going to be taken seriously. But he's become our company spokesman. The point is not to advertise, or solicit business, but to engage in conversation - a relationship with people. Ruofs is a personality.
In truth, Ruofs (pronounced Rufus) is a bull. A plastic steer. Slightly larger than life, he grazes the pavement outside the Ruland's Used Office Furniture Supply, at 215 N. 16th Street. He peers balefully at passing motorists. He looks like a prime time sign for a meat market. But Ruofs (an acronym) is no meathead on the hoof. He's something of a ham !