Move over Chicken Dance, Do the Numa Numaposted by Jazz at 2/27/2005 11:02:00 AM
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Here, then, is the cautionary tale of Gary Brolsma, 19, amateur videographer and guy from New Jersey, who made the grave mistake of placing on the Internet a brief clip of himself dancing along to a Rumanian pop song. Even in the bathroom mirror, Mr. Brolsma's performance could only be described as earnest but painful.Now, let's be clear. This isn't anything pornographic, offense, or even controversial. Mr. Brolsma isn't naked, or doing anything sexual, etc. His video simply shows him sitting at his computer in front of a camera lip synching to a foreign pop song and doing a silly dance. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that the guy has some talent. Lip synching, particularly to a foreign language song, isn't all that easy. And he combines it with some really amusing facial expressions, arched eyebrows, and a kind of "arms in the air" flailing kind of dance. You can see the video here.
When I looked at it, I laughed. And it wasn't some kind of "oh, look at the idiot... let's make fun of him" laugh. I was honestly amused. Seriously, I've seen so-called "professional" comedians doing far worse. This guy's one piece of schtick is ten times funnier than anything that awful Carrot Top has ever done. Joe Gandelman, guest posting at Dean's World, has some additional observations on this guy's plight, and both he and the commenters there seem to also treat the young man in a very sympathetic fashion.
But, none the less, the young man is embarrassed and, as it says in the linked article, has stopped taking press calls and retreated to seclusion in his parents' home. I suppose the Times' lede is correct in calling it a "cautionary tale", though I still don't see what he has to be so ashamed of. Maybe I'm just as much of a geek as he is. But the point is, you have to be careful when you put any sort of personal material out on the web. It never goes away. For example, how sorry do you think this poor bastard is that he ever put this picture on his computer?
You take certain chances when you share anything over the web. In a non-damaging example, last year we took some shots of me at the "America hating, non-troop supporting pinko" rally, and put them on the blog, including this one. It took Ron from MEJ all of fifteen seconds to create this picture out of it and send it to me. (To be perfectly fair, Ron did not publish that picture. He e-mailed it.) But I was the one who put it on the web, so it's now there for perpetuity. If I was going to be embarrassed about it, I wouldn't or shouldn't have done it in the first place.
So be careful when you step foot out of your door and onto the winding paths of the "internets", as our preznit would say. And if you run into the Numa Numa dancer, tell him to keep his chin up. It wasn't that bad. He should do Letterman.