Who here remembers the Snuggie? It stormed onto the Internet scene in 2008 and has made more than $500 million in its first five years of existence. Sure, people started buying it as a joke ... but it worked. Therein lies the genius: what’s the most absurd thing we can make, market, and sell that’s actually brilliant?
Alas, the Snuggie’s days of Internet fame dwindled as a new contender stepped into the as-seen-on-TV competitive ring — another completely ridiculous invention that ended up making millions because, well, it’s truly very useful. Enter the Selfie Stick: an umbrella shaft–like apparatus that holds one’s camera or phone and Bluetooth-edly snaps self-portraits. What makes this even better than the Snuggie? It takes away the annoyance of having to interact with other human beings. Remember the olden days of, “Excuse me, will you take our picture?” What a burden! What an embarrassment! Now you can decrease that pesky mandated social interaction for as little as $6.
The first iteration of the selfie stick dates back to 1984 as a “telescopic extender for supporting a compact camera,” but it wasn’t until the 2014 holiday shopping season that the selfie stick rocked America’s collective, consumerist mind. Celebrities quickly jumped on the “narcisstick” bandwagon: Beyoncé (all hail) used one in her 7/11 music video, and Kim Kardashian recently released a lovely coffee-table book of selfies titled Selfish.
But, like any work of genius, there are some people who love it and some who loathe it. One surprising celeb-selfie supporter is none other than Buckingham U. Badger himself. When the Badger Insider team told Bucky that his photo shoot for the Summer issue’s cover would involve a selfie stick, he could barely contain his excitement (though you’d think with his excitement, he would’ve moved a little more quickly to get on set).
To be honest, we were a little worried that Bucky’s massive paws wouldn’t be able to press the tiny button that sends invisible Bluetooth waves to the attached iPhone. We shouldn’t have worried: he started snapping away before our photographer was even ready, so we quickly found out that Bucky is pretty skilled with the selfies. We also found out that if you put Bucky on the Memorial Union Terrace with a selfie stick, people will want to get in on the action. Like, a lot of people.
The lucky ones who finally made it into the selfie and onto the cover of Badger Insider’s Summer 2015 issue are Nicole Glowacki x’16, Kayla Bilderback x’16, and Mitch Marks ’14. Here are some of Bucky’s best selfies.