I effing love the Winnebago Man. I have loved that video on YouTube forever. And I clearly remember laughing so hard I had tears in my eyes. At my work we happen to get a lot of freelancers coming in and out, and we have a bonding ritual here in our little studio (nicknamed “The Cave”), out of view of the other suit-and-tie employees… we must watch Winnebago Man (and the Alabama Leprechaun video). The origins of the video clip are a little bit interesting for a web-designer working for a marketing team. Viral videos, and viral marketing, more specifically, are the buzzwords of the day. But it is certainly not a term I’ve heard used before the internet was widespread. But yet, Winnebago Man’s origins are from the days of VHS tape (originally filmed in 1988), passed around amongst friends, and beyond, which could arguably classify it as a pre-YouTube viral video.
So when I heard that there would be a documentary based on the Winnebago Man, I was ecstatic. I followed the updates on Twitter… and when I heard they were looking for people to help promote on the street team, I signed up along with my friend. Last night we took the train to the city after passing out some cards in the White Plains area to promote the film. Although we were focused on leaving them at restaurants and the like, people seemed to be really curious what we were doing. Which is totally opposite to what I would have imagined. Those people standing on the street corners attempting to hand you papers, they are damn obnoxious. And most people won’t take them… the ones that do often throw them away not far down the street. So when people off the street walk up to you and want to see what you’ve got, that surprised me. Any extra flyers we had were posted on poles or other places around for people to see.
And best of all, we met some interesting people on this little adventure. A restaurant host that wanted extra flyers to hand out to friends. Some great artists in the Union Square area (whom I gave my little IRideTheHarlemLine card, I hope they email me, I’d love to post some of their subway related art/photography on here). And even people that saw the flyer and recognized Jack Rebney, having seen the video.
It was a great little adventure last night… except for the nasty lady who took off her shoes and socks on the train, but I’m trying to forget that part. If you happen to be in the city though, you should definitely check out Winnebago Man. It comes out tomorrow.