Friday, September 12, 2008

WSJ write-up

Did you read it? Urban Pranksters/ Improv Everywhere (and flash mobs, in general) made the front page of the weekend edition of The Wallstreet Journal. Sweet. Add that to your weekend reading list.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Thrill the World, Flash Mob Austin!

News of possible awesomeness! If we end up doing the zombie dance off for our October mission, all the zombies who learn the choreography can participate in "Thrill the World" the weekend before Halloween! Get this: Thrill the World is an annual attempt to break the Guinness World Record for the largest simultaneous dance to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.” Lamely enough, the record is only 62 zombies! We had way more people than that at Operation Pillow Fiiiiight, and that was our first mission.

In fact, if you're interested, Flash Mob Austin may even team up with the official Thrill the World Austin team. We're still polling to see if y'all think the zombie dance-off is a good idea. If it's a go, you'll have the opportunity to do both events! Leave a comment below and tell me what you think of that. Seriously. Your input determines our output. Thank you!

UPDATE (9/13/08): Thrill the World Austin will be an event separate from any Flash Mob Austin mission, however, we are encouraging all of our members to participate so that they will be ready for our zombie dance-off the following week. See the Thrill the World Austin blog for more info.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Operation Über Famous

We met. We planned. We conquered.

Last Saturday's plotting mission went very well. If you missed it, we missed you.

Here are the deets for the next mission: OPERATION ÜBER FAMOUS

The über famous Laney is in Austin for ACL. Laney, a fictional media darling/ teen sensation relishes her privacy while on vacation. So what will happen when she leaves her hotel for a night out on 6th street? Will her small entourage be able to stay incognito? Why don't you come along to find out?

The MANDATORY pre-assignment briefing meeting:
Friday, September 26th at 10pm at Republic Square Park.
Look for Agent Filkins and Agent Adams in their navy blue "Flash Mob Austin" t-shirts. All of the details will be finalized in the 40 minutes prior to the agents taking their places. If you want to participate in this mission (and gee wiz, do we need a TON of you!) you must come to the pre-meeting. It will run like clockwork once everyone is assigned their specific location and their personalized duty.

The needs:
40 agents, minimum. Bring yourself and at least one friend. At least nine of the agents will need to be equipped and dressed like paparazzi.

Question: How long is this thing going to take, eh?

  • 9pm: Come early to find free parking!
  • 10pm: pre-meeting at 10pm sharp at Republic Square Park (4th & San Antonio)
  • 10:45pm: all agents in place along 6th Street
  • 11pm sharp: The über famous Laney leaves the Driskill hotel's 6th Street exit with entourage (manager, best friend, and bodyguard) only to be faced with paparazzi who are anticipating her appearance.
  • 11:02pm: after she poses for some photos and signs a few autographs, she successfully makes it past the first crush of paparazzi and heads east down 6th Street.
  • 11:05pm: There are exclamations from all different areas of the street as "partyers" (aka agents) in the crowd realize who she is "Oh my GOSH! Did you see that? It's Laney!" "Woah! What the heck! I totally didn't know she was in town!" "Holy crap, dude, where is my camera? Quick, get your phone out!" etc. Various agents may be assigned to call other agents who are stationed down the street, "warning" of her approach: "Seriously, I just saw her! Where are you? Freakin' get outside! She just passed The Aquarium!" etc. Our goal is to create a buzz all up and down 6th Street, getting non-agents to take her picture and/ or ask for autographs.
  • 11:15pm (just past the intersection of Trinity & 6th): Laney's bodyguard is starting to get a little concerned, after stopping for quite a few autographs and picture taking sessions, he can see that she isn't going to be able to party in anonymity as she had hoped. He seeks out a means of escape, but the crowd starting to follow her is quickly getting out of hand. AH HA! Perfect! A pedicab! He starts to hurry towards the biker and secure his services for this V.I.P. in a confidential yet urgent manner.
  • 11:16pm: Laney, her best friend, and mom/manager are ushered into the pedicab by her bodyguard, which then "speeds" off, amidst cries from those followers left behind.
  • 11:17pm: For the next block north on Neches, agents "heading downtown" recognize her in the pedicab and talk loudly about it amongst themselves, garnering even more attention on her exit from the chaos. Laney's bodyguard hurries off after the pedicab, whilst speaking into his earpiece and watch.
  • 11:30pm: HIGHLY ENCOURAGED after-meeting at Brush Park (4th & Trinity) wherein we all discuss the successes and the take-aways from the assignment.
  • 11:45pm: Those who are 21+ can go out on the town to relish our second successful flash mob.
Laney: Agent Rachel (age 16)
Laney's momager (mom/ manager): Agent Kim (Rachel's mom)
Laney's best friend: Rachel's bff
Bodyguard: Agent Bertman
Paparazzi lead: Agent Jon Bolden
Pedicabber rescue: Agent tons0fun Chris

-We need at least nine more photographers! You don't have to have a great camera, but it'd be beneficial if it has a big flash, but not necessary. OR bring a video camera (like a reporter) if you have one. Paparazzi: you should come dressed like, well, paparazzi. Do some research, yo. We need solid commitments on this. No flakers, mmmmkay? Without the paparazzi, this assignment fails.
-everyone else, come dressed to party on 6th Street and prepare a story about how you know Laney and why you're her biggest fan.

Get on the UrbanPrankster message board to get involved or email flashmobaustin [at] gmail [dot] com.

[note: photo by Steve Simon]

Sunday, September 7, 2008

September mission: Operation Über Famous

Your mission, if you choose to accept it, will be to create a buzz around "Laney", our fictitious celebrity. This is Flash Mob Austin's second event and it happens to take place on the über busy Friday of ACL.

Date: Friday, September 26th
Time: Mandatory meet-up and mission assignments at 10:00 p.m.
Location: Republic Square Park (4th & San Antonio) [map link]

See the Urban Prankster Network for all the gnarly details or email flashmobaustin [at] gmail [dot] com for the deets. Spread the word like it's the latest Hollywood gossip.

Update: specific details are now online.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

This Saturday: September planning meeting

Why do we have planning meetings? Because it takes careful planning to make chaos happen!

Join us this Saturday for the September Flash Mob Austin planning meeting: Sat., Sept. 6, 2008. Shipe Park, 2:30 p.m.

Shipe park is at 201 East 45th Street, Austin, Texas [map link]

You can find Agent Filkins and Agent Adams standing under the shelter by the picnic table. We'll be sporting our incredible "Flash Mob Austin" navy blue t-shirts and lookin' lively. Come prepared to warm up with a game or two, and bring your ideas.

In the meantime, here is one of my favorite flash mob videos from the famed group "Improv Everywhere" outta NYC.