Keep Houston Press Free

John Rich of Big & Rich is My New Favorite Snowflake

John Rich, imagining the parade they'll throw for him once Nike is destroyed.
John Rich, imagining the parade they'll throw for him once Nike is destroyed.
Warner Bros. Records/Youtube.com

Socks have always struck me as being slightly more expensive than I’d like. I’m not even talking about the fancy socks you hear advertised on podcasts, but the regular bag of socks you might pick up at a Target. I buy them, of course, because my feet have earned them, but the sticker shock always gets me. Which is to say, when I look at that photo John Rich of Big & Rich fame posted on Twitter of his soundman still wearing the Nike socks he felt compelled to cut up because he disagreed with their decision to hire Colin Kaepernick, I get it. When you don’t have time to properly vet every sock manufacturer out there, sometimes you just have to wear the socks* you cut up.

Now, plenty of people have dunked on Rich and his soundman because of said photo, and rightly so. I’m all in favor of economic protests, and if you’d rather destroy your coffeemaker or set your sneakers on fire because you can’t agree with a company's policy, you do you. But the fact that this dude is still wearing his socks after he cut the logos off just tells me that Nike socks are so good that even when you’re super mad at them you just don't want to get rid of them. That’s quality I can get behind.

The thing is, that photo isn’t even the most embarrassing part of the tweet. The embarrassing part is the last line, in which Rich states, “Get ready @Nike multiply that by the millions.” Oh yes, a nation of millions turns its head to the guy who co-wrote “Save a Horse (Ride a Cowboy)” for their marching orders. I’ll confess I was shocked to learn that John Rich commanded such an audience. Surely if he was going to be the one to take Nike down, his success in music must be much greater than I’ve been led to believe. Surely he must be selling tons of records if he's going to get millions to turn against one of the most powerful clothing brands in history.

But then I got to the biggest plot twist in this entire story: Big & Rich have never had an album reach the top of the Billboard 200 and have never had a single in the Billboard Hot 100 top 10.

I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Houston and help keep the future of Houston Press free.


Can we talk about “snowflakes” for a minute? As an insult, it’s overused to hell, and rarely in a manner that isn’t completely hypocritical. But isn’t it weird that it’s used almost exclusively to mean “too sensitive”? It’s taken away from the twisted beauty of the original insult. Let’s be honest, John Rich is a complete snowflake, the type of guy who thinks because he’s marginally talented he’s special, and thus thinks he’s going to change the world by showing people a pair of poorly cut up socks.

Tuesday morning, Nike’s stocks were down 2 percent, and I bet John Rich was somewhere feeling really good about himself, thinking his life is finally going to be more than novelty country songs. I wonder if he looked up Adidas and Puma stocks as well, because they were also down 2 percent, and they didn’t sign Colin Kaepernick. Weird how that works.

*You know, John Rich seems like a decent enough boss, the type of person who will let you protest on the company dime about how other people shouldn’t protest on the company dime, but if you’re a music star with nearly 200,000 Twitter followers, can’t you do your soundman a solid and get him a good pair of socks at a moment’s notice? Do they not have Walmarts on the Redneck Riviera? (Oh God, is this all a ploy because Rich is getting into the sock market?)

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.