I am about to provide you with photograhic evidence of the greatest meeting of two different pop culture icons that I have ever been witness to with mine own eyes.
I was there, on North Rush Street in Chicago, when the Oscar Mayer Weinermobile was joined by The Planters Nutmobile for a joint promotional stop. This was not publicly promoted in advance. Your PopCulteer just happened to be in the right place at the right time.
Let me tell you my story.
It begins in August, 2014, when your faithful correspondent made the awesome trek to Chicago to marry Mel Larch, his long-betrothed love. It was a wonderful, magical trip, but I had some issues that made things less than pleasant. I was at least fifty pounds heavier than I thought I was, and I knew I was overweight. On top of that, it was well over ninety degrees most of the time we were there. I did not enjoy walking around the city much. After about a block, I would blame the heat and slow down.
I was also unaware that I was suffering from Myasthenia Gravis, an auto-immune disorder otherwise known as “grave muscle weakeness.”
Long story short, I didn’t feel much like walking around Chicago back then, but now that I’m getting treatment for MG and have lost a lot of weight, I actually enjoy exploring the city, even to the point of taking a robust jaunt during a bitter cold snap.
On the day in question, Thursday, December 8 to be exact, Mrs. PopCulteer and I took a cab to Water Tower Place, the mall that you saw a few photos from earlier, and I surprised her with my announcement that we would be walking back to our hotel, over a mile away. This is a big deal for me, especially in sub-freezing temperatures.
We strolled down Michigan Avenue, “The Magnificent Mile,” made a few stops along the way–to shop, not to rest–and proceeded to the Shops at Northbridge, where Mel went in search of a hot cocoa while I checked Facebook on my phone. At this point we were just two blocks from our hotel.
When we left for the short walk back to our trusty Hilton Garden Inn, we left the mall, crossed Grand Avenue, and as I prepared to cross Rush Street, Mel let out a shriek…”WEINERMOBILE!’
There it was, parked in front of the Marriott Hotel’s entrance on Rush Street, the famed Oscar Mayer Weinermobile. I had never been this close to the iconic giant mobile frankfurter while it was parked. I had passed it on the interstate a couple of times, but here it was sitting still…and I had my camera on me.
I looked at my wife, “I must go take pictures of this.” “Yes, do,” she replied, “Run, run like the wind!”
And so I hied my way down Rush Street, when a mere ten feet into my hie-ing, I spotted the Planters Nutmobile, coming down the street in the general direction of the Oscar Mayer Weinermobile. I quickly whipped out my camera to grab a shot of both of these legendary behemouths, fearful that they would surely soon part, as such awesomeness could be too much for one street to bear. That photo is what you see at the top of this post.
My fears were unfounded. Well, my fears of not being able to get a good photo of the meeting of the weiner and the nuts were unfounded. My fear of being run over by the Planters Nutmobile was brief, but very real as the giant hybrid-powered legume suddenly swerved in my direction and made a U-turn so that it could park directly behind the Weinermobile in some sort of harmonic convergence of automotive foodstuffs.
Having managed to evade being crushed by the mammoth peanut, I proceeded to take photos to prove that such a thing truly did happen. I even managed to ask Mrs. PopCulteer to take a photo of me standing in front of the Oscar Mayer Weinermobile and The Planters Nutmobile, for the sake of journalism (and also a really neat profile pic on Facebook). It was such a surreal, magical moment that even the hyperactive jackass in the red jacket who kept jumping into almost every shot (and into heavy traffic more than once) did not bother me.
And here, for your viewing pleasure and enlightenment, photographic proof of the Weinermobile/Nutmobile incident on Rush Street, December 8, 2016…
How can two such marvelous things co-exist on the same street?
Right after this shot, the Nutmobile swerved and headed directly where I was standing.