Monday March 25, 2013
Puddle-jump mania seems to have waned.
The YouTube video of Elkhart Central High School senior Lakeem Cook jumping in a “puddle,” only to be devoured by a larger-than-expected hole, has 2,645,685 hits as of a moment ago. Certainly not bad, pretty good, in fact. A lot better than my videos. But the new total is up “just” 250,000 or so from 2.38 million a week ago, Monday March 18, not the meteoric rate of increase after the video first came out on March 9.
Here are the video’s statistics (note that though views still trend up, the rate of increase isn’t as sharp as before):
Lakeem jumped in what appeared to be a small puddle on March 9 on a $1 bet as his friends looked on, one with a camera. The puddle was much more than he bargained for — it was actually a drain opening with no cover — and the hole swallowed him up.
He got out, thank goodness, and the resulting video made for amusing viewing. It caught on globally, too, and became a momentary sensation. Media around the country featured the video and Lakeem was interviewed by RightThisMinute.com (was promised new shoes, even, to replace the pair apparently ruined in the dip).
As for the hole, it’s no longer there. The drain in question is covered by a grate anyway. I visited the Family Dollar parking lot on Sunday (I live pretty close) and there was new fill around the drain, though the section has yet to be paved over. Before and after:
Tim Vandenack is a reporter at the Elkhart Truth newspaper in Elkhart, Ind., www.etruth.com. He can be reached at email@example.com or 574-296-5884. Visit him/subscribe to him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter at @timvandenack.