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The Ones that Got Away: REI Contest Entries that Didn't Make the Cut

This isn't about the winners of our "Winter Bliss" contest. No, it's about the "losers"—the funny, weird or surprisingly similar entries that didn’t quite make the cut, but that were notable nonetheless.

We partnered with Burton last month and ran the contest on REI's Facebook page for 5 days. Every day brought a new contest, and 3 of the contests—for best caption, headline and haiku—were judged. There were 1,993 judged entries. Below you'll find a handful of the more entertaining ones. Read 'em and weep (or laugh).

REI Winter Bliss caption contest

CAPTION CONTEST
Entries: 528
At stake: 3 Burton daypacks

Number of “Look Ma, no hands!” entries: 8, or 10 if you include such variations as James C.'s and Darrin M.'s “Look Ma, no snow.”

Variations of “Oh (fill in the blank), I left the stove on”: 5, including 2 references to leaving the coffee pot on.

Number of Shakespeare references: 2, including “My soul is in the sky” from Midsummer’s Night Dream and “She’d be swift in motion as a ball,” (based on a line Juliet says when she’s wondering why her nurse is taking so long.) - submitted by Jen O. and Erin A.

We wished there would have been a contest for brutal honesty so this one could have won: “I would love to win this!!!! Would stow my gear perfectly when riding around Crystal!!!” - Jaclyn B.

References to the movie Better Off Dead: 1, (“Two Dollars!”). Ha. - Matt B.

Actual winners (in no particular order):
Does this board make my air look big?‬‬
- Jeff C.
 
For some reason, gravelboarding never caught on.‬‬
- Maggie G.
 
The downside of airing this big is the snow melting before you land.‬
- Scott Y.

 REI Winter Bliss headline contest

HEADLINE CONTEST
Entries: 902
At stake: 2 Burton jackets

Number of “Look Ma, no hands!” entries: 23, if you include such variations as Alyce P.'s “Look mom, I’m flying!” and Scott W.'s“Hey mom! Look, I'm in a facebook ad!”

Honesty award: “I could really use a new jacket this year.” - Hilde S.

Number of people who thought our female snowboarder was a guy: 6, including Jim W., the author of this entry—“Steady boy, don’t misplace the family jewels.” — and 2 entries by well wishers Malina L. and Chelsea G. who hoped she was wearing a cup.

Best entry by a disgruntled skateboarder: “Snowboarding: A place where skateboarding is still legal.” - Allison J.

Most humble entry: Sometimes I think to myself "Self, you rock!" - Sandy O.

Most respectful to the rights of trademarked merchandise: “You wouldn't want to try this in a Columbia (trademark symbol) jacket.” - Tiffany G.

Best parodies of our headline: Kim M.'s “Ever hear applause with a face plant?” and Lori W.'s “Ever wonder if your medical insurance is up to date?”

Actual winners:
Even the squirrels were clapping.
- Tylyn H.
 
Girls make it look easy.
- Allison H.

REI Winter Bliss haiki contest

HAIKU CONTEST
Entries: 563
At stake: 2 Burton snowboards

Unlike the caption and headline entries, no two haikus were exactly alike. Here, we list the awards we wish we could have given.

Most honest:
“hey, i'm super short
buying a snowboard is hard
would love some free gear!”
- Winifrid L.

“Can't figure one out. Too early.” - Rhonda L.

Minimum number of people who clearly didn’t want to win: 2
“Snowboarding, no way!
That's for insane, crazy fools
Watch, now I will win!”
- Linda P.

“Snowboards SUCK!” - Mark O.

Best entries by people who knew they weren’t going to win:
oh I love you so.
Yet I was not picked to win.
you get yellow snow.
- Steven Y.

Can I win sweet stuff?
Not if the haiku is bad.
Out of luck I guess.
- Casey K.

Raddest, coolest, most awesome entry:
REI is cool.
Winning free gear is awesome.
Both combined are rad.
- Jennifer A.

Most random haiku:
Haiku's can be fun
Sometimes they don't make much sense
Refrigerator
- Eric F.

Best use of the word “snow”:
snow snow snow snow snow
snow snow snow snow snow snow snow
snow snow snow snow snow
- Tony T.

Best use of haiku technology:
I Just Now Googled
How to Write Haiku Poems
To Win a Snowboard
- Matthew S.

Best entry about bacon:
where is my bacon
i was saving that bacon
damn, I miss my dog
- Kyle R.

Best entry by a cheating heart:
old board doesn't know
i want to win a new one
it will have to deal
- Jonathan S.

Best "haiku" that details citizenship status:
bla bla bla give me some free stuff . i am a deserving person and i am a legal citizen.
- Leif A.

Honorable mention: We really liked this one. It just wasn’t quite the message we were looking for:

Never broke a bone
Learning to snowboard next week
Health card in wallet
- Adam W.

Actual winners:
The ride to the top.
Allows us time to reflect.
Here we go again.
 - Thomas C.
 
Solid sphere surprise
Spinning from the frosty shrub
Sly sniper snowball
 - Wayne L.

Thanks, everybody, for participating!

Posted on at 2:15 PM

Tagged: Haiku, captions, headlines, rei and winter bliss contest

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