Ah, the United States of America. We have a dirty laundry list of things that are distinctly ours. The world has a laugh at us, memes are made and they fade, and aspects of all of these things are immortalized by long rooted stereotypes the world can only pass off as fundamentally just us.
We eat 14 billion burgers every year, a number we’re sure is rising (even barring the litany of fad diets we have). We measure things in the one system with which only three countries (including us) on the planet measure. To continue the list of fundamentally American things, we’ll talk about two U.S. staples: Pringles and Wal-Mart.
Pringles chips — you know, the ones out of the can — are an amazing snack. Wal-Mart is a company that’s been successfully battling with the Silicon Valley unicorn we know, love, and buy stuff from called Amazon. Well, what Amazon doesn’t have to deal with by being an internet-based company is the general American public. Wal-Mart is on the front lines. Every. Single. Day.
Let’s lay the story out a little. Near the border of Oklahoma and Texas, local authorities received an interesting call from a Wal-Mart about a suspicious woman who was in the midst of a multiple hour cruise. She was riding around the Wal-Mart parking lot driving an electric scooter — reserved for people with disabilities — with a Pringles can in hand. Now, if you’ve ever had Pringles, you know you can veritably drink the chips within. She was not. She had put an entire bottle of wine, of unknown vintage, inside the Pringles can and was riding around drinking it. She was reported having done this for several hours.
Now, 86% of companies with employee recognition programs cite an increase in worker happiness. However, can you imagine being the Wal-Mart employee who finally caught on to this woman’s Pringles-can-based, wine-laden adventure? Whoever they are, they deserve a medal.
When the police were contacted, the woman had vacated the parking lot. They found her at a nearby restaurant where she was told that she could never return to that Wal-Mart. She wasn’t arrested, likely because she wasn’t actually found on Wal-Mart property during her adventure. But, she got banned from that Wal-Mart. The jury’s still out on all the other Wal-Marts that populate the United States.
We only say this because once the internet got ahold of this story, it did what only the internet can do: make it a meme. And goodness, they certainly did.
Food and beverage blogs across the country started conducting field tests involving the combination of wine and Pringles cans.
ďYou should definitely dump out the chips, but you donít need to rinse out the can because itís going to smell like Pringles regardless,” said a writer from Food and Wine.
In the wake of the event, one Texas bar had a happy hour special that served Franzia boxed wine in miniature Pringles cans. They made the news for it. If this speaks for anything, it speaks for the virality of social media. And ‘Merica.
Like clockwork, another Texas-based limousine company added to the fray by announcing an event on Facebook inviting people to tailgate at Wal-Mart:
“Weíre gonna meet in the parking lot of this Walmart and drink wine or whatever you like from a Pringles can. You wanna ride an electric scooter while you drink from a Pringles can? Thatís cool. You wanna sit on the tailgate of your Ford F-150? Thatís fine too. Just be sure to bring your Pringles can, empty of chips, and full of your favorite beverage,” said their post. It got more than 7,000 people interested via their Facebook.
We can end this piece no better than with the original advertising words of Pringles themselves: Once you pop, you can’t stop.
The question is, what vintage are you popping?
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