[UPDATE] On Alki David's $250,000 Streaking Challenge: There's Always A Catch
By Rachel Cromidas in News on Jul 1, 2015 9:20PM
[UPDATE BELOW] Always read the fine print. Even when it's nowhere to be found.
That might be the takeaway message for the Chicagoans who have taken up Greek billionaire Alki David's recent offer while being interviewed on a local radio station last week to pay $250,000 to anyone who streaks in front of Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
While his radio interview does not appear to be available online (and we certainly didn't hear it on air), his challenge has spawned several news articles and a flurry of interest on Twitter, mostly from young people with students loans and a high shame-threshold. The only problem is, none of those articles or Tweets made mention of a few of the rules of David's challenge, including the requirement that streakers promote his new movie with a chant and web URL written across their chests.
Jackie S., one of the first streakers to find the mayor and successfully strip for him, believes her attempt should count, anyway. David has told Chicagoist via email that it does not.
But she's not the only streaker to catch the mayor and his security detail off guard—or to appear to only fulfill David's challenge partially.
Kyle Fallon emailed Chicagoist Tuesday with his streaking video, below. We're willing to give him some major style points for the freaked-out look on Rahm's face as Fallon leaps, completely naked, over a fence during the Pride Parade and streaks across his path in a pale blur before disappearing into a crowd of rainbow-clad revelers.
Update July 2, 5:00 p.m.: Fallon told Chicagoist that he did write "Battlecam.com" on his chest and chant the web address as he streaked in front of Rahm, but the blurry phone video didn't capture it. He's hoping the attempt will count, and he has a photo of his chest with the URL written on it moments before the video was shot to prove it. But he has received no word from David yet.
We understand David's aim with the challenge was to stir up some good-natured, harmless fun—even though streaking is technically illegal. (Editor's Note: And also get publicity for his movie in a SO original way. Not really.)
But we can't help but think he's punching a little too low on this joke. There's nothing funny about the nation's student loan crisis, or Chicago's unemployment rate, or the state budget woes that are threatening a government shutdown this week—or the fact that a lot of people in Chicago really need money. If you have a cool quarter-million to spare, why not give it to some people who could really use it right now (or the long-suffering Greek economy, as one local political reporter suggested)?
While David's stunt sounds sufficiently humiliating, we sadly can't fault anyone for playing along. But there are still no excuses for shooting vertical videos.