While celebrating his birthday in Manhattan in 2006, Paul was assaulted, suffering from a broken cheekbone in five places, an eye fracture and stitches; he took one month off from work to recover.
I basically took all of the negative energy and put it into this product and developed it. I wrote out the marketing plan and just started pushing it to media and got the right people around me to get it out there. I tried to take the negative experience and make it something positive, he says.
His brother Andre came up with the idea to use the cards as the mechanism to deliver the Latin heritage information after seeing the U.S. military developed playing cards that helped troops identify the most-wanted members of Saddam Husseins government. We said, You know, thats pretty negative but how can we take it and use it for something positive? Paul recalls.
He immediately thought of the Latin population based on his own desire for information coupled with the fact that in the Southwest colleges were shutting down Mexican-American studies, which was bizarre because half the Hispanic population is in the Southwest.
In September 2010 the idea became reality.
Determining what to include in the deck was a matter of conducting research on U.S. Latino demographics. Predominantly in the U.S. its Mexican, Puerto Rican, Dominican and Cuban. I know those are our top peer groups so youll find that most of the characters are based on them. Then you go into the other ethnicities: Nicaraguan, Panamanian. Theres a certain amount of representation in the cards, he says. Hes also planning to customize cards for various ethnicities, including Puerto Rican and Mexican.