Elkhart teen’s puddle jump gets more than 1 million YouTube views
Posted: 03/13/2013 at 8:00 am
By: Emily Pfund
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A seven foot deep sink hole appeared in the parking lot of the Family Dollar store on Goshen Avenue Saturday evening, March 9, 2013. A shopper mistook it for just a puddle and drove into it and needed a tow truck to get out. (Truth Photo By Larry Tebo)
On Saturday, March 9, Lakeem Cook, a senior at Elkhart Central High School, and six of his friends went to Family Dollar at 909 Goshen Ave. in Elkhart to buy snacks.
Two of the boys thought it would be funny to dare Cook to jump in a large mud puddle for $1 because he was wearing a new pair of shoes.
Cook rolled up his pants to keep them dry, stepped to the edge of the water and jumped.
Where he expected to find asphalt beneath his feet, there was only water.
His first thought was “to pull myself out,” he said. “I can’t swim.”
Cook’s friend, Colin Rudicil, recorded the jump on his cell phone.
Minutes after Cook’s leap, Rudicil uploaded the video to YouTube.
“I had a feeling it was going to be popular,” Rudicil said. “Like 100,000 (views) tops.”
As of 10 p.m. Tuesday the video had been viewed more than 1 million times.
A producer from the MTV show “Ridiculousness” commented on the video asking permission to feature it on the show. Rudicil said he will likely let the show use his video.
Since the video took off online, it has been picked up by news outlets around the country.
One of them, viral video website www.rightthisminute.com, offered Cook a gift card for new shoes to replace the ones he ruined in the parking lot puddle.
At school, classmates have jokingly warned Cook, “Watch out for that puddle!” and offered to pay him $1 to jump in other puddles.
“At first I was a little embarrassed and kind of mad, but I’m content with it now,” he said of the sudden attention. “I just hope that everybody learns from my mistake, not jumping in any puddles, If they do it better be for more than a dollar.”