Free Stuff Fridays: Caption Contest #1

Do you like free stuff?

Of course you do. I do too. All humans do. It’s coded into our DNA. It’s what separates us from chimps.

You know what’s even better than free stuff? Free useful stuff.

And that’s why you could be in store for a good ass day (figuratively, not literally – I’m sure your butt has 7 good days a week).

Badger’s official AT footwear and outerwear sponsor, Hi-Tec, has been generous enough to hook you guys with some useful free stuff.

I know– pretty damn sweet.

Here’s how it works:

Each Friday for the next four weeks, I will post a picture from the trail. In the comments section below, you provide your comical caption. Each week I will select the funniest submission as the winner. That’s it.

Also– I will announce the winner on the Good Badger Facebook page– so be sure to “Like” the page. You don’t have to actually like it, that’s asking too much. Just click the thumbs up button at the top.

This week, the awesome item up to be won is the V-Lite Altitude Max WPi (pictured below).


And here’s this week’s photo.

Giant Slug

Insert Funny Anecdote

Make Zach LOL below (please use an active email address so I can contact you). The winner will be announced on Monday.

Get some.

Fables and Fortune Hunters

The following is an excerpt from Timothy Ferriss’ The Four Hour Work Week, a book very instrumental in my decision to go for an extended wander.  I recommend his blog.  Always very inspirational and insightful.


Fables and Fortune Hunters

An American businessman took a vacation to a small coastal Mexican village on doctor’s orders.  Unable to sleep after an urgent phone call from the office the first morning, he walked out to the pier to clear his head.  A small boat with just one fisherman had docked, and inside the boat were several large yellowfin tuna.  The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish.

Read more

The Most Anticipated Albums of 2011

most anticipated albums 2011

So I’ve told you in the past that this wasn’t a music blog.  I want to reiterate this: this is not a music blog.  There is already a Los Angeles size traffic jam of superb music blogs in existence.  I both admire and envy these writers’ endless insatiability for discovering music that inspires.  I will stick to what I do best (getting pelted in the head with hardcover books).

This post, however, is a music post. Read more

The Top 3 Good Badger Posts of 2010

You can’t look anywhere this time of the year without seeing a “2010, the year in review” or “the top X Cat Fails of 2010” or “The Top Trends in Waffles for 2010” type list.

And as we all know I make my living by duplicating these cheap schemes.  Which is why I’ve compiled a series of “best of” lists for you to recount all of the mediocre work that’s happened on this site in the last 12 months:

The Top 3 Good Badger Posts of 2010

1)  How to: Move to San Diego (Less about San Diego, more about kicking life butt)

2)  The Power of Reciprocity (buying a woman a drink increases your odds of reproducing)

3)  Extra Large Enablers (apparently people are fed up with fat people)

The Top 1 Post of 2010 (According to My Roommate Chris)

This list includes all of the posts that have made my roommate Chris laugh in 2010

1)  The Best 15 Second Frog Blog Promo Video

The Top Guest Blogger/Interview/Contributor Posts of 2010

1)  Oatview: an Interview with “The Oatmeal’s” Matthew Inman

2)  Every Stupid Person Needs ESPN (featuring Alex J Wysocki)

3)  5 Ways to Network Without Feeling Dirty

The Editor’s Choice (aka Top Cat Posts of 2010)

and of course this is the most important

1)  4 Ways to Make Your Cat Go Viral

2)  Kitty Inspiration

3)  Mans Best (Invisible) Friend

And for real personal favorites of mine that may have been overlooked, forgotten, or simply not very good in the eyes of society…of 2010:

1)  Problems Lead to Hula Dancing

2)  Your Resume Isn’t Good Enough

3)  How To Win At Facebook

A sincere thank you to all of my readers.  You guys honestly kick a dangerous amount of ass.  Look for less bad on this site in 2011.


The Good Badger

Interview with “The Oatmeal’s” Matthew Inman

Interview with Matthew Inman, Creator of The Oatmeal

One reoccurring theme on this site (other teaching you how to make your cat a celebrity) is an undying conviction that aligning your hobbies with your life’s work is the only way to live life.

But why take my word on it?  Instead take Matthew Inman’s.

For the few of you who aren’t already familiar with Inman’s immensely popular website The Oatmeal, I encourage you to dedicate a few hours to digging through his hilarious comics.  Formerly, just a skilled hobby of his, Inman now dedicates his full-time work towards The Oatmeal, and is thriving in his efforts.

A big thanks to Matt for taking the time to answer my questions.  Be sure to stop by his store and buy a bunch of stuff for all of your friends and family for Xmas and the rest of the lesser holidays.  Without further ado I now present you…

Oatview: An Interview with “The Oatmeal’s” Creator, Matthew Inman

Read more

Win a Pair of Padres Tickets – Caption Contest

Here’s the deets:

Win a pair of tickets to the Padres vs. Cubs game on Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2010 at 7:05 pm. The tickets are in the Toyota Terrace Reserved; these are good seats.

All you have to do to enter is leave a caption in the comments below.  The funniest entry wins.  That’s it.

Contest ends at 1:00 p.m. P.S.T. on Tuesday.  The tickets can be picked up at Will Call.

Thug chihuahua

Sub Standard Marketing – The Good, Bad, and Ugly of Sandwich Advertising

sub standard marketing - subway's marketing strategy image

Here’s some good life news: you don’t have to be smart to have a job.

You don’t even have to be good at your job to get your job.

I know this- because I watch commercials.  If you watch commercials, you know this too.  Commercials, an expensive product meant solely to make you want to buy something, can be so poorly planned that they actually have the exact opposite effect.  The person who makes these commercials, is getting paid a good sum of money to achieve these counter-productive results.

Really, anyone, can get a job (maybe more so when the economy escapes the sewer.)

“the Good Badger, can you give us a specific example of your proposed marketing incompetence?”

Why, yes I can, thanks for asking.

How Quizno’s Ran the Worst Marketing Campaign of all time

Anyone who’s eaten at Quizno’s knows first hand that they make a quality sandwich.  Put an unbranded Subway product next to Quizno’s and you’ll choose the latter 10 times out of 10 (assuming you have taste buds).  Although Quizno’s has the clear advantage on taste, Subway wins where it counts- selling sandwiches.

How is it that Subway sells more sandwiches with an inferior product?  Consumers will choose the best product, right?  Ask anyone who’s owned a Volkswagon Jetta- they know first hand that this is not the case.

Subway sells more sandwiches than Quizno’s because they understand marketing.  In the consumer’s brain, they’re buying Subway because it’s cheap, it’s fresh, and it’s healthy.  Let us consider a few of things though:

  1. Eating healthy, is not cheap. Especially if you’re eating out.  What Subway’s selling is cheap, low-quality vegetables.  A vegetable’s’ “health” is reflected in it’s color and water density.  A nutrientless vegetable is basically water and fiber, and you can get both of those much cheaper at a faucet and nutritional store. Are the vegetables that you’re getting at your Subway dark and water dense?  If so, I need to start going to your Subway.
  2. Eating Subway, is not cheap. At least not in comparison to other sub places and bringing your own sandwich.  The difference in cost between Subway and Quizno’s is much smaller than the difference between Subway and grocery shopping.  Going to the grocery store is both cheaper and healthier.  You eat out because it’s a treat, and the relative difference in cost to Quizno’s should be seemingly insignificant.
  3. You select the ingredients at every sandwich shop.  You can load your sandwich with chipotle mayonnaise, bacon, and cheddar at Subway and put only lettuce and vinegar on your sandwich at Quizno’s.  What you’re paying for at Subway is the idea of health.

Subway’s Marketing Strategy

Ask anyone what they know about “Jared” (don’t even prompt them on the subject) and they will likely tell you about an obese guy who walked to Subway and transformed his body to become only pretty chubby.  They repetitively drill into our heads this concept of cheap, fresh, and healthy.  You’ve seen Jared’s fat jeans more times than many of your own pants.  They hire professional athletes, the most physically conditioned people on earth, to endorse their product.  They use catchy songs to hook the low price of their sandwich in your head.  They have the consumer under their trance.

They- are good at marketing.

Now, let’s take a look at what Quizno’s wants us to know about their sandwiches:

Someone got paid to make that.

I understand what the commercial is trying to do- make 18 year old guys and pot heads laugh.  This is common practice with advertising.  Conventional wisdom states that the funnier the ad, the more likely you’ll be able to recall it, and thus it’s used as a barometer of success.  The only problem with this theory is it doesn’t workHumor by itself is not a recipe for advertising success. Humor can be a successful tactic IF it reinforces a positive trait of your company (or occasionally a negative quality of a competitor or both).  Otherwise, you’ll just recall the comedy and lose the brand, which might be a victory for the advertising agency but not for the company.

Consumers don’t process most decisions with any depth (we’re inundated with decisions every day, it’s a coping mechanism), so they construct shortcuts.  Brand perception is no exception.  The core responsibility for any marketing department, is to create the perception of the brand.  If this is done well, a good marketing strategy will build this meaningful shortcut for us.  If this is done poorly, rats with guitars will result.

Subway tactfully and consistently reinforces their mantra: cheap, fresh, healthy.  Quizno’s allocated their resources to periodontitis rodents.  This is a bad idea for most businesses, but if you’re in the business of selling food, you have successfully done irreparable damage to your brand.


Although the moral of this story would appear to be marketing-centric, it is not.  The key takeaway today lady or gentleman, is that if the Quizno’s head or marketing has a job, anyone can have any job.  Just imagine how easy it would be if you were really good at it and knew how to let people know it.