NYC | Flashing Lights, Lights, Lights, Lights

When I asked people to add to my “27 Things to do Before I Turn 27” list, Frousin Emily suggested to be part of a flashmob and gave me the link to ImprovEverywhere.  I had seen “performances” by this group before so I of course agreed to add this item to my to-do list.  On Saturday, we got to cross this off as we were a part of the Mp3 Experiment Eight in Battery Park City.

Frousin Maura was coming up specifically for the event and she and Emily were going to meet me in the park.  I convinced Kristyn and John to do it with us somehow, which may have something to do with the multiple pitchers of beer we drank at the Frying Pan earlier that day.

For the “performance”, we had to each wear a black shirt, and bring a flashlight, a camera with a flash, something else that flashed, something that glowed, and a mask.  Check out the masks we made at my apartment right beforehand:


We each had to download an MP3 and put it on our phones, then we were supposed to start it at exactly 8:30, synching up our watches with an atomic clock on the website.  I’m guessing only half the people started their MP3 at the exactly correct time, but I think it all came together pretty well, considering some people must have been two minutes behind others.  Kristyn, John, and I got to the park just a few minutes before it began and saw hundreds of people in black shirts all around us.  We started to get nervous and excited.  Luckily Emily and Maura were able to find us just as it was starting.


The general premise of the improv was that we were members of a tribe (wearing black) and there were members of another tribe (wearing white) and we had to do a ritual meeting ceremony.  Here are some of the things we had to do, some of them dealing directly with the meeting ceremony, and some of them just ridiculous:

  • Point to Nicaragua.
  • Take pictures of people while making the “bbbbbblllllll” sound with our lips.  Check out how attractive we are.


  • Hop like a bunny.
  • Walk like an astronaut.
  • Give high fives to people on the street who were not involved.
  • Put on our masks.


  • Do shadow puppets on a member of the white tribe’s shirt (thanks Uncle Terry for teaching me that duck spitting out a watermelon seed back in ’89).
  • Play a game of flashlight tag together (people named Mike, Michael, and Sarah had to start it off).
  • Have lightsaber wars with our glow-in-the-dark objects.

Here is the video! Especially check out around 2:35 where you can see Emily and me and part of John & Kristyn:


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