Though many companies sure gave it their best shot, none could surpass the truly outstanding tactlessness of The Onion's fake 9/11 coupon advertising a special "Subtember 11th" deal of 2 Subway footlong subs for $9.11.
No one was more appalled by the mock-promotion than Subway itself. And by "no one was more appalled" I mean no one else was appalled.
But Subway was plenty appalled on everyone's behalf:
Like everyone, we are deeply offended by the fake story and ad created by The Onion.— SUBWAY Restaurants (@SUBWAY) September 6, 2013
The sandwich chain did eventually come around, though. Well, at least one its stores did.
I played a prank on my friend and convinced him that The Onion’s satirical 9/11 deal was a real promotion, and when he and my other co-worker (who was in on it) went to grab the food Subway actually honored the promotion. I gave my co-worker a blown up version of the picture that The Onion made for their article and they accepted it. I have a receipt showing a subtotal of $9.11 before taxes. My mind was blown.
He also noted that there are no $5 footlongs in San Francisco, so the duo actually saved about seven bucks.
It took 12 years, but 9/11 is finally paying off.