April 19, 2024

Extreme Branding

Yesterday I saw something so odd that I just can’t let it pass unrecorded.

I was on a plane from Newark to Seattle, and I noticed that I was sitting next to Adidas Man. Nearly everything about this guy bore the Adidas brand, generally both the name and the logo. His shirt. His pants. His shoes. His jacket. His suitcase. His watch. His CD player. And – I swear I’m not making this up – his wedding ring. Yes, the broad silver band worn on the fourth finger of his left hand was designed in classic wedding-band style, except for the addition of the Adidas logo, and the letters a-d-i-d-a-s embossed prominently on the outside.


  1. Anonymous says

    What? No tattoos? You call that extreme branding?

  2. I saw shirt in parody of another company whose customers are notoriously obsessed with branded merchandise.

    It was in the shape of a the company logo and it said, “I need to be accepted by others so badly that I pay Harley Davidson to advertise their product.”

  3. He probably did work for Adidas. But still, this strikes me as pretty weird.

    I have considerable loyalty to my employer, and I’m occasionally seen wearing a shirt displaying their logo or carrying an item stamped with their brand. But I can’t imagine wanting to put their name or logo on my wedding ring.

  4. Just to point out the obvious: he probably worked for Adidas. That would explain the ring.

  5. Steve Feinstein says

    aNonMooseCowherd said: “… companies declare themselves to be religions…where the company can avoid paying taxes on its profits.”

    There doesn’t seem to be a need for this. Two-thirds of companies in US pay no taxes as it is.

  6. Rob: That’s exactly why I hesitated to ask him!

    Wendy: He didn’t look like an elite athlete, but he was fit enough not to embarrass Adidas.

  7. The question is, was he fit, or should Adidas have a claim for trademark tarnishment?

  8. aNonMooseCowherd says

    Rob Rose writes: “…why you should convert to Adidas.”I suppose the next step will be when companies declare themselves to be religions. Some lawyer will figure out an angle where the company can avoid paying taxes on its profits.

  9. steve crandall says

    Christof Koch of CalTech has an Apple tatoo …


    it is small and he isn’t exactly a walking billboard.

  10. You should have asked him about it! I’m guessing he’d have been eager to discuss how Adidas had changed him life and why you should convert to Adidas. 🙂