Christmas is over. Welcome back to Electros Brand Electronics photo shoot. Hopefully your holiday wasn't too pathetic and you're ready to focus and actually do some work this time. But before we start, I just want to clear the air and say that it wasn't your fault for the poor quality of work last time, but ours. We should not have expected you to be up to Electros Brand Electronics standards. So, while I was blaming you all along for not taking your career seriously, it was, in fact, not an issue of you at all. Instead it is your career that is pathetic. Seems obvious now, right? So low and sad that even on your livelihood's best day it is simply never, ever equal to the effort and ability executed daily in our engineering. Two different worlds. One perfect and professional, one not. Simple. Whew, feels good to get that apology off the chest. I'll do my best to see the world through your subhuman eyes. Okay, now we can start tabula rasa. That means clean slate. Like when you were eighteen and your police record was erased. Too bad they can't rid you of those kids though. But enough joking, let's get to work.

So, to make life better for you we have come up with a new slogan-we love slogans here-for working with you. "Lower Stress Through Lower Standards." Not only does it sound great and roll off the tongue, but it also makes sense. Check this out: Last time we had you model with some of our biggest hitters, and, well, it was obvious that you didn't belong next to Unit X456-L:F or Unit JT2:86. Too much contrast. Expertly crafted machinery beside a sagged mother of a bajillion. Nope. Didn't work. Didn't mesh. Not a bit. So we're lowering standards. Looking for the Electros Brand Electronics product that matches you and your "look". We have to find the McDonald's fries to match you, the Big Mac. See, we're lowering our standards to meet you.

So, instead of expecting you to do something important and respectful , today we're working for the free newspaper out of Batesville, Arkansas. A Tuesday spread, no less. If you get this shoot right, you're mug will butt up right next to an article about a junior varsity basketball team. You'll be seen by tens of dozens of people and maybe even, if you're really lucky, the local PTA board. And, as if that wasn't already a perfect fit, you'll also be holding one of our lower end models, the good old Unit M95TTe-Lite. It's the consumer version of our Mud Tester. It tests mud. Can you handle that?

Of course you can. All you have to do is smile at the camera and look republican. Not like that. Too republican. Just calm down. Relax, smile, and follow my orders. Turn to the side a little and hold the M95TTe-Lite a little higher on your knee. There, now your pants don't look like wax paper spread over a bratwurst. Okay, keep posing. This is a decent grade Mud Tester, so you need to play the part. Get into the feel of things. Like you're out in some field testing some weird Arkansas mud. I don't know why, just do it. Like you're checking the water levels or any of the other million abilities featured in an Electros Mud Tester. Get emotional now, really put your head down and become part of the mud test. Like testing this mud is what's feeding you at night, like you're some weird Arkansas boar looking through the forest mud for a bite to eat.

Actually, while we're talking about boars, I just want to state the obvious: you've really filled out since our last photo shoot. It's like looking at a diet program's before and after photos in reverse. Anyone else, I'd guess that they ate a few casseroles over the holidays, but you, well, it's unlikely that you had enough time between booze and cigarettes to do an anything other than pop enough Vienna Sausages until you gave yourself an ulcer. Did you rob a gas station snack shelf and your family gathered around your liquor cabinet as you dolled out servings of Ho-Hos and sunflower seeds? That's my first guess. Second guess: you're pregnant.

Either way, I don't like what I see. Not one bit. But, in the spirit of holiday cheer, I promised to be nice, so here's what we'll be sending to Batesville. The editors tried their best to crop you out, but looks like you won. Now, whenever anyone in Batesville sees the beautiful M95TTe-Lite, they'll also see those orange fingers of yours. You've made it to the big leagues. Arkansas will love you, darling. Sure, it's not as elegant as we like here at Electros Brand Electronics, but the Mud Tester affectionados will really enjoy it. In the mean time, I have a little gift for you. It's a handgun. Our next shoot is going to be the most important of them all, so, if the stress of the situation seems too big and you just want to make it all go away, think about it. .

– Ian "Salmon Season" Golding (@iggolding)

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