Archive | seriously dumb

When a brilliant product idea marries a bad package design

When a brilliant product idea marries a bad package design

I did not make this picture up. Some designer and ad agency thought it was a good idea to make “raw water” look caca brown like this. In today’s “I wish I thought of that department,” we present for your amusement and bemusement . . . raw water. At a premium price, no less. What, [...]

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Posted in design, seriously dumb1 Comment

A whole new dimension of demented exercise machines

A whole new dimension of demented exercise machines

Many moons ago, when this blog was still new and fresh, I wrote a post about the world’s most demented exercise machine, a startlingly stupid mobile treadmill that allowed you to treadmill your way around the neighborhood. Of course, the Einstein’s who introduced the mobile treadmill did not sufficiently differentiate their thousand dollar contraption from, [...]

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How not to do an iPhone app

How not to do an iPhone app

Doug Liman does app marketing. Click a girl, like Rebound Girl, and Pepsi’s “Amp Up Before You Score” app gives you advice on how to score with that “type” of girl. If you succeed in bedding the girl (for real), you can add “Rebound Girl” to your “Brag List.” Pepsi, for some reason, decides that [...]

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The infinite joys of trade magazines

The infinite joys of trade magazines

People in the real world have no idea the sheer size and absurdity of the trade magazine universe, a kind of alternate universe that exists in some parallel dimension right next to our own. How you pass through that dimensional door is anyone’s guess, but you know you’re there when you start receiving Grounds Maintenance [...]

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Posted in happenings, seriously dumb1 Comment

You know it’s a slow business news day . . .

You know it’s a slow business news day . . .

When “My Sister Wants to Borrow Money” is a major national headline for CNN: Just fires you up to click “More Headlines” to find out more world-changing news. How about, “My Dog Eats from the Cat Box” or “My Computer Crashed.” Here’s a a screen shot of the CNN site. This is right up there [...]

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Frugality as Extreme Sport, Part 1

Frugality as Extreme Sport, Part 1

Broke is back in fashion In honor of Marc Andresson and Ben Horowitz starting up a new venture capital firm with the stated intention of only investing in startups that understand how not to spend money, today we launch a new series covering the looniest end of the frugality scale, the entrepreneurs and business owners [...]

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Why grammar counts

Why grammar counts

I right for the Washington Poste. Today, for all the universe to see, The Washington Post has publicly announced that it doesn’t know the first thing about English grammar, as you can see in the headline to the right. (It’s “fewer gifts,” never “less gifts.”) Now, I don’t really traffic in grammar pedantry. Language is [...]

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This social networking thing has gotten seriously out of control

In today’s seriously dumb department, a social network for the “hair transplant community.” Okay, aside from the bald jokes, which I avoid out of superstition (there but for the grace of God go I), why do people keep coming up with this stuff? And how do they come up with names like “hair transplant community” [...]

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Posted in seriously dumb, social marketing0 Comments

Do we really need a pizza box that requires a user manual and video training?

There is no end to human ingenuity. The children of this generation are scads more shrewd than the children of light, as they saying goes. But ingenuity has a disheartening ability to escape the bounds of simple common sense. Or just plain “simple,” for that matter, without the common sense. So, for your delectation, I [...]

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Every dumb thing I know about the economy, I got from the television

If, like me, you followed Jon Stewart’s recent defeathering, skewering, and roasting of bulbous blabbermouth, Jim Cramer, with unrepentant delight, then I’m sure you would just love to see Stewart tongue-lash a few more of these cable television tunaheads. Starting with Chris Hansen, who’s graduated from lusting after teen girls to lusting after bankers. As [...]

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Posted in economy, happenings, seriously dumb2 Comments

Beer jello

Beer jello

Just in case you’ve been racking your brain for so-out-there-there-is-no-there-there product ideas, our seriously dumb department gives you beer jello (called “jelly” ゼリー in Japanese) from Yebisu. Pack these in your kids’ lunches and let the hilarity begin! Hey, in Minnesota we used to cook all sorts of fun and frolicky things in our jello, [...]

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That’s right. Our cover model has no eyes.

That’s right. Our cover model has no eyes.

In a previous post, I emphasized that visuals matter. The stuff you see and the stuff you don’t see translates into attitudes and behaviors. I also said that we pay photographers, designers, and marketing professionals to notice all that stuff in visuals that we don’t notice. So I want you to imagine what sumac berries [...]

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Bill Gates sharing his fortune . . .

Just forward this blog and Bill Gates will pay you $240! Not. Today I received two forwards of this “viral” email from former clients, both excellent businessmen. You’ve probably got one, too. Or you’re about to. It says that Microsoft and AOL have merged and they’re tracking a new email system. Forward the email, and [...]

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Give your kid the gift of a broken arm

Give your kid the gift of a broken arm

I want you to imagine that you’re the head of marketing for a toy company. One of your jobs is to supply catalogs with pictures of your product. As an experienced marketer, you know that it’s the parents who buy the toy, not the kids. You also know, being an experienced marketer, after all, that [...]

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Our business strategy is a movie . . .

Apple ::: Weekend At Bernie’s Apple goes to desperate lengths to prove that Steve Jobs is still breathing. The board promises all the rest of us that we will “know” when Jobs becomes incapable of performing his job, but they don’t tell us exactly when we’ll know. Once Jobs starts showing up with sunglasses and [...]

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You shouldn’t have fallen asleep in algebra class

CareerCast.com released today its list of the best and worst American jobs. Guess what? Your job isn’t in the top ten. That honor goes to the taped-glasses crowd that stayed awake in math class. The top three jobs are all math jobs and another four are math-heavy careers. 1. Mathematician 2. Actuary 3. Statistician (what?) [...]

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The world’s most demented exercise machine

In today’s I-want-whatever-drugs-they’re-taking department, we proudly give you the Treadmobile, enthusiastically hailed as “The World’s Worst Invention” by YouTube: httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xoq-hxtv-AI I’d pay real money to see someone run down a steep hill with this thing. I mean steepily, steependously steep, like someplace in San Francisco. Actually, the Treadmobile isn’t the world’s worst product invention. Believe [...]

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Posted in seriously dumb4 Comments

Joe the Plumber is an acolyte of the Austrian School . . .

In today’s seriously dumb category, my just-arrived American Spectator has book recommendations from the “most distinguished readers and writers,” a truly rarefied group which, apparently, includes Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher, the 15-minute-famed, tax-dodging, Joe The (unlicensed) Plumber. Among predictable bathroom reading choices that plumb the lost lore of toilet history (“Flushed with Delight: The Story of [...]

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Actually, I don’t listen to the lyrics . . .

In today’s seriously dumb department, KTLK AM 1150 here in Los Angeles got paid good money to produce and broadcast an infomercial trying to finagle loyal listeners out of their 401K’s to get in on a scheme buying up Orange County probate property for dimes on the dollar and to sell for dollars on the [...]

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You know it’s a bubble when . . .

. . . starry-eyed entrepreneurs are building a social network for bald guys. From today’s Craig’s List: The site in development concerns a Hair Loss Community. Not a community only dedicated to solving hair loss, but a full online community dedicated to the entire hair loss lifestyle. This is a full scale social networking website. [...]

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Posted in seriously dumb, social marketing, the strategy notebook4 Comments

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