It’s getting to the point where video sharing sites are going to have to devote an entire channel to a new genre: “Stranded Air Travelers.”
Two Alabama twentysomethings are the latest to turn a missed flight into a viral video. In “9 Ways to Pass Time in an Airport,” Zach Searcy and Ben Borrello of Birmingham chronicle the night they spent at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport after missing their connecting flight home from California. As they write in their intro: “We… decided to make the most of it by doing things that we have always dreamed of doing in an airport.”
Make the most of it they do. Their video — which begins with them in a futile sprint toward their missed connection (fun fact: you can run even faster if you’re not holding a camera) — shows them engaging in various shenanigans, stunts, and feats of strength in the mostly empty DFW airport: racing wheelchairs, sprinting across the moving sidewalks, and sleeping in various airport locations, including the bathroom (let’s hope it was after the nighttime cleaning).
Zach Searcy and Ben Borrello sleep their way to the top of viral video stardom (Photo: YouTube)
Their airport adventure has struck a nerve online. “9 Ways to Pass Time in an Airport” has already racked up more than 150,000 views. Their viral success comes less than a month after another stranded airline passenger, Richard Dunn of Georgia, won instant fame for his video of him lip -syncing Celine Dion’s “All By Myself” in Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport. Dunn not only hit the “one million views” jackpot, he won something even cooler: an invitation back to Vegas this past weekend to meet Celine Dion and catch her show.
No doubt, Dunn’s success and the popularity of “9 Ways to Pass Time in an Airport” are feel-good, regular-guy-hits-it-big stories. But there’s a potential downside: copycats. Will we soon see travelers intentionally missing late night flights so they too can turn near-empty airports into amateur film sets? Will empty boarding gates soon be crawling with sleep-deprived, camera-holding Spielberg wannabes who aspire to viral video fame and meet-and-greets with French-Canadian superstars?
Maybe. Fortunately, we’re not there yet, so enjoy “9 Ways to Pass Time in an Airport.” But, please, on behalf of air travelers anywhere: don’t get any ideas!