The Path of Daggers book tour, September 1998, report by Rajiv MoteEdit
originally posted at rec.arts.sf.written.robert-jordan
And once the crowd had cleared out, he was willing to chat (we talked about where he got "Easing the Badger" and the related iconography). But I agree, his wife was by far the more enthusiastic and charming.
Well, he didn't give a "within-WoT" story explanation. But "Easing the Badger" and the picture of the dancing badger and the man with a golden (not silver, like in his book) shovel came out of a history book RJ had read. (His wife remembered the name, but I forgot it, along with the historical period.) There was a group in England who used that name and had that iconography on a banner. He didn't know anything about the group other than that, but his wife speculated that "Easing the Badger" could be something like the "Upping of the Swans", which was the annual count of the swans living in the royal gardens.
For what it's worth, when he signed my book, he wrote "You're too young to know what 'Easing the Badger' means!"