Ever wanted to be somebody else? Of course. I always wanted to be 6’6″ and play in the NBA. That didn’t quite work out. Along with lots of folks, I’ve also wanted to be better looking. You know, have that rakish, movie star kind of face wattage, instead of an Irish pug with a nose in the middle of it that looks like somebody took some silly putty and threw it against a wall. My face is such a ragtag collection of disparate elements that in a recent blast about Flashbus, fakechuckwestfall suggested I had been separated at birth from a sock puppet. Geez, that’s a little harsh, doncha think?
At any rate, at every city on the Flashbus tour, anybody who shows up as a character, I will spontaneously try to tailor a lighting solution for and shoot. Off the cuff, come on stage, meet the flash. Now, this is not a contract. If in, say, San Francisco or New York, there are too many decked out people in the audience, I’m not gonna get to everybody. It will be random. An effective disguise does not automatically get you photographed. (Nor does it gain admission….more on that at the end of this post.)
But what it will do is win you a free Language of Light DVD set, autographed and handed to you, right there, for what is judged to be the best or most outrageous outfit. Whoever shows up in what either myself or the crowd determines is the best costume or character, gets a free DVD, one per stop. Decision of the judges is arbitrary, and final:-)
But, this kind of thing can be fun. Up in Calgary last year we had Captain Jack and Oompy the Clown show up. (Those wacky Canadians!) Did my best, spur of the moment. What I will do is tweet the day before we get to a stop, as will Drew and the rest of the gang on the bus. In that tweet, I’ll put it out there–looking for bikers, athletes, rockers, outdoor types, bureaucrats, politicians, preachers, waitresses, you name it. You could even show up as a serial killer. From what I understand, they look like everybody else. Might even call for a ballerina or two, who knows. So in honor of our first stop, Seattle, I’m calling right now for highly caffeinated garage band rockers. And given the fact that we’re right next door to the great North Woods of Canada, and one of my favorite cities, Vancouver, home to a bunch of good friends and terrific shooters, anybody who shows up as a dancer, or a lumberjack, well, we’ll see what we can do.
More on Flashbus: The list of sold out cities is pretty lengthy at this point, and there are generally over 100 people on each city’s wait list. We’ve had lots of calls about just showing up, and getting in at the last minute. Ain’t gonna work, apologies. We have strict limits on the numbers of people in the venues we’ve booked, and folks in charge of such rooms and convention centers are gonna be on the lookout for overage. If your name’s not on the list, you won’t get in.
The intrepid Karen Lenz has been working through lists of VALs, and is pretty on top of it, considering we had 600 requests. She’s gotten back to most folks, I’m sure, and if you haven’t heard yet, it most likely means she filled the volunteer list already. Again, apologies.
And lastly the Flashbus itself is somewhere in the country, heading for Seattle. We’ve had numerous reports of sightings, but nothing concrete yet. Again, thanks to fakechuckwestfall, there was this snap of the bus. I mean, something this underpowered should be easy to spot, yes?
Then there are those who insist the bus has not been seen yet because it’s not in the country. Evidence of this comes from Jonathan Bowcott, over in England.
The game’s afoot! More tk….
Ted McAusher says
HAHAHAH!!! I can’t wait to see how people show up for you. This is great!
Tim Skipper says
Awesome ideas, sounds like it is going to be so much fun.
Ask for people with tattoos in LA. Better yet, FlashBus tattoos. I got a sharpie.
Frank T says
Personally, I think everyone should be required to wear khaki cargo shorts just to get in. Kind of the “secret dress code.”
Joe Howe says
I was witness to the goings on in Calgary.
I had a great time, you won’t go away diappointed.
Honestly now Joe, fake Chuck has a point. Just be glad with the knowledge that it is the INSIDE of your head that counts, imagine you’d get stuck with Charlie Sheens upper extremity for instance… 🙂
I’m getting excited for the Dallas show, I think it’s a great idea to get people to come dressed up, it’ll stop them from bringing a sock puppet and comparing the two of you…. Hehehehehe
Cathie Heart says
Aww I had my hopes up then! I’m a fellow UKer and was all into thinking of characters I could be; then I rushed to your FlashBus site and find its a US only tour 🙁 .. I had great fun attending your world tour last summer. I’m really looking forward to see the characters that turn up in your blog 😀
Thom Gourley says
hmmmmm, should i come as cher or glenn beck, cher or glenn beck…such a big decision!!! 🙂
Paul Van says
It would be sweet if you could do a Canadian tour – hit each provincial capitol! (we only have 10 provinces.)
You should really come to Memphis TN.
Craig Taylor says
Sadly, I won’t be able to help lend a hand as one of your Cowtown paparazzi but I’m sending another citizen of the Stampede city your way. I can’t guarantee he’ll dress up but I can say he might make references to duct tape.
I guess the only way Dave is coming up north is if it ever gets warm enough to wear cargo shorts outside of the airport terminal… 😉
John Swarce says
I won’t be dressing up in Boston, but now I am giddy with anticipation of seeing the people that do come in costume! Great idea, Joe!
Jonathan Bowcott says
Brilliant, thanks for the mention and enjoying the snap Joe.
Scott C. says
I spotted the Flash Tour bus in Atlanta last week!!
I dunno, I always thought you looked like William H. Macy, a genuine movie star. Granted, he’s known for movies like Fargo.
David Kish says
I truly enjoy your comedy blog. I’ve heard you’re not bad with a camera either.
So sorry to learn you already visited calgary. Hope nex time will happen sooner then later.
Virginia Smith says
searching around Portland for a couple hours while you were teaching the faithful at the convention center…Where in the (*&%$#$%^&** did you hide that bus!
haha… the bus is amazing..
Mathieu Wauters says
It is wonderful that you always seek a creative twist in whatever you do Joe! Great bus pictures. 🙂