FLOAT's Top Ten Most Memorable Moments - #8
"Carol Nearly Kills a Kid"
There is always one truth that stands hold at any convention, and that is that the teachers want a nice crowd in their classroom. As such, they are willing to go the extra mile to ensure people show up for their particular offering.
At the very first FLOAT Convention in 2008, this was especially important. You see, the teachers were not directly paid at the first FLOAT; instead they received a stipend of $10 for every student who took their class, and the money was paid to the teachers directly by the students, much like how Twist and Shout runs their convention. So it was really important that people showed up for their classes; if not, they didn't get paid!
So at Opening Night 2008, Carol Fields (now Miner) had an idea to attract attention and get students to come to her fabric class. She had a small bag made from spandex and was going to have someone from the crowd come up on stage, get inside of it and then stand up, demonstrating how much expansion was capable from this amazing fabric. But because of the size of the bag, Carol decided we were better off using a child from the audience as opposed to a full grown adult.
OK, big night starts...all the teachers are on stage talking about their classes, and then comes Carol's turn. She had asked a nice young man from the audience of around 12 years of age to join her on stage, which he did so eagerly. And as directed, the young man stepped inside Carol's demo bag, she zipped him inside of it like a big blue coccoon and asked the curled up boy to rise up and show how much the bag could stretch.
Only one problem.....it didn't really stretch. As the young man struggled to get to his feet, this spandex bag didn't really want to cooperate. As he stood up, he ended up losing his balance and crashed down to the stage. And in a very close call, as he stumbled around before falling, he nearly fell OFF the side of the stage, which could have met with disastrous results! Fortunately, several people leaped to assist him before he could tumble off the stage.
The boy was unhurt and despite the set back, Carol was bound and determined to show how versatile the product was, so again, she asked him to rise and show how amazing the product was. And yes, this time around the bag appeared to cooperate, and as he stood and raised his hands over his head, the now blob of a boy made quite an impact on the crowd.
Only one OTHER problem...it wasn't actually working right either. It turns out that the bag had torn at the seam where the zipper was. So as he stood and stretched, along his back side the bag was just ripping right up along with him. Once he reached full extension, the entire back of the bag had nearly split in two!
Needless to say, that little fact had been left out of the on-stage presentation...until now :)