Block off your calendars from now through at least next May because we are going to the Bean.
Who is we you ask? Several thousand Facebook users, including myself, who have marked themselves interested or going to Bean-themed events ranging in complexity from Windex the Bean and Babysit The Bean to Catapult The Bean over Sears Tower and Help the bean score 175 on her SAT so she can get into Harvard.
What precisely started this un-Bean-lievable meme is unclear, but it seems to have grown from the similar Facebook events section.
Just a few weeks ago, a series of Facebook events beginning with Sneak into Iowa at midnight and steal all their corn and ending with events such as Defend Iowa From People Trying To Steal Our Corn and Distract the people of Iowa trying to keep us from stealing their corn. The event date came and went with some groups of people actually showing up in some place or another.
It is important to consider, however, that those examples all centered on one particular date with different events responding to and attempting to out do one another. Some of the Bean events have been scheduled months from now.
I get Facebook notifications most days about Bean events, and I dont expect that to slow down anytime soon.
The Beans event memes have followed a similar pattern of building on each other with events like Paint the Bean black so they can’t Windex it, Scrape Off The Paint From The Bean So We Can Windex It and Windex The Bean Again.
Last Friday, I thought Id get in on the fun myself so I created a Bean-themed event just to see what would happen. All I did was quickly (and terribly) crop together an image of The Bean and Lake Michigan, and in just a few days, the event, Push the Bean into Lake Michigan to Make a Big One-Bean Soup has over 8,000 people interested and counting.
Like any meme, it seems this cultural moment will last forever, continually escalating ad infinitum, but it is possible, and as much as I hate to admit it, likely these events will fall further away from public focus. But even if the world stops looking, over 4,000 people will get a notification from Facebook on February 14 telling them to Tell the Bean how much you don’t like sand.
Its almost poetic that the event I found furthest into the future, May 12 to be exact, is titled simply Go to the Chicago Bean for no reason.