Monday, May 18, 2009
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Shortly after H&S launched their Shock & Awe Campaign back at the end of March, we received a bunch of emails from people urging us not to give up. This stupid Bozo Project had really resonated with folks. I think it was clear that we were the little guys in this battle so no one wanted to see us quit or be squashed. Matt and I weren’t sure what our next move was going to be – or if there was going to be one – but I started to do some field research. How could we retaliate if we chose to? Would we need a cache of Bozos? If so, where the hell were they going to come from and more importantly, who was going to pay for it? Thus far, all Bozo Project-related expenses were paid out of pocket (by me). Although the Bozo Project was based inside my office and our company (VideoHelper) was more than tolerating Matt’s and my clear display of mental illness, I couldn’t very well expect them to foot the bill.
Enter: the Vermont Country Store. I had purchased Bozos 4 & 5 through them (www.vermontcountrystore.com) and figured they were worth a shot in asking for any kind of discount and/or free Bozos to support our project. Two other companies had flatly refused. One offered me an exceptionally generous “5% discount” which by my calculations equaled a pile of diarrhea. I emailed The Vermont Country Store’s customer service department, explained the situation, sent some of the media coverage links and asked for their support.
I promptly received a nice rejection email. Oh well. I took it as a sign to forget it. I think they thought it was some kind of scam. But then…two days later I received a voicemail from a bigwig at the Vermont Country Store telling me that they’d received my email and would like to help. I was kind of skeptical at that point and didn’t return the call. So they called again. This time it was their PR firm. I thought it was a joke. But the Vermont Country Store was dead serious about supporting a counter-attack. And they had ideas. Crazy ideas. Ideas involving a live clown army and a fleet of yellow cabs. Yikes.
They were willing to back anything we wanted.
They had promised the Bozo Project any Bozos they had in stock. And they delivered. Unprompted, they FedEx'd us over 40 Bozos the next day. WITH NO STRINGS ATTACHED! Before we even had a plan in place! They basically told us they loved the project and wanted to help in any way they could. And that was it. They asked for nothing in return except to be kept abreast of the situation. How insane is that?
So now I had a giant pile of Bozos on my office floor with no plan as to what do to next. So they sat there for a few weeks while we mulled over our next move. People offered us suggestions for counter-attacks but most of them were either mean-spirited or too “pranky” for our tastes. And too many people suggested we use live Bozos. Eeek. For us, the Bozo Project was simply a visual display of communication between two companies high above 21st Street, based on inflatable Bozo the Clowns and didn’t involve humiliating anyone (except ourselves).
And then, unprompted, the Vermont Country Store sent MORE BOZOS. I think we now had around 48? 50?.
Friends, let me ask you this before we take one more breath together: Are you even familiar with the genius that is The Vermont Country Store? Because if not, welcome to your new obsession! A family-owned business since 1946, they are “The Purveyors of the Practical and Hard-to-Find.” And they really mean it. In other words, if you’re looking to buy anything you’ve ever thought of or needed in your whole life, you can probably find it there.
No? Oh Okay. Well how about some overnight corn salve?
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
On Tuesday, April 21st, we received this email at Bozo Project Headquarters: “We have a bozo, facing South on 22nd St., across the parking lot from the last building on the blog. We also got ours this past holiday party and he has been around the office since then. When we found this blog we had to put him in a window and submit it!”
We were out of town on a biz trip and advised the party that we’d look into it when we returned on Monday, April 25th.
For reasons unknown, I was early/on time for work that Monday and decided to check out this new Bozo for myself and get some pics for cataloguing. But I didn’t see any evidence of a new Bozo on 22nd. So I gave up and cockily showed up for work on time.
I emailed the 22nd Street Bozo person to say I was unable to substantiate their claim. I received this response: “Sadly our Bozo has gone missing after being with us for over 4 months. My theory is that upper management had enough of him and “took care of it.” I posted the attached flyer around the office to see if we could get some info. Overall, it’s a sad, sad day here…”
Another gut-wrenching element to the story is that 22nd Street Bozo’s view was of none other than, the heartbreak trio of 21st Street – The Endeavor Bozos. Did they even know they were the objects of 22nd Street Bozo’s affections? Did they care? Or were the Endeavor Bozos still too caught up in the glitz, glamour and allure of H&S’s Bozos?
Friday, April 17, 2009
And who couldn’t love these guys? Look at how they express their individuality: Bozo #21 - He’s a low key kinda guy not fazed by labels or couture. He prefers to keep it real and simple. He’s no one’s billboard. A loner, yet wiling to take a chance on love and life. Bozo #22 - His cowboy hat says to the world “Hey world. I’m a cowboy. Look at my hat if you don’t believe me. But I’m no rodeo clown.” Bozo #23 This mod Bozo sports a natty scarf to attract the objects of his affections. A well-dressed Bozo is never out of fashion.
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Behold. He had hopes of being The Bozo Project’s first international outpost and he achieved that dream. Please welcome our first international Bozo Project participant, Vancouver Opera Bozo! He stands guard at 835 Cambie Street, Vancouver, BC.
Look at him. Love him. Respect him. So proud. So cultural. So inaugural.
The intended target for this Bozo is an international school across the street. How daring! How provocative! I smell espionage and intrigue! Trust no one!
You can follow the results of Vancouver Opera Bozo’s mission in these two blogs (Note: These are not entirely Bozo P blogs. These are personal, smartie, good reads. Unlike the Bozo P.)
Photos by Ling Chan
Monday, April 13, 2009
“Hello from 21st Street, NYC” say these three (3!) new, pioneering, regulation, 46”, full-size Bozos. We just received word that these happy guys were born at Endeavor Studios. You may ask: “Really, come on…pioneers? How can they be described as such?” “Outrageous!” “That’s pretty hefty praise. I need proof!” “Is it deserved, this honorable and powerful title of ‘pioneers’ that you’ve bestowed upon them?” Yes. We think so, because these are the first Bozos on 21st (aside from us and H&S) to join the Bozo Project. And in such a bold fashion! To come out blazing with three (3!) Bozos! Endeavor Studios does not fuck around! They are staking their claim and boldly announcing their arrival as the newest Bozos on the block. Impressive. We especially love that they are faced so that they can see their Bozo friends at Harrison & Star.