A while back I was contacted by the Aha Moment crew about taking part once they got to Santa Cruz. I had never heard of them, so of course my first instinct was that this was some new kind of phishing invented to fool Internet-savvy homeschooling moms. It turned out it wasn’t—it’s a real thing and a real job. This really nice group of young people travel the country in a trailer tricked out as a TV studio, interviewing locals at each stop and putting their interviews up on the Web.
I had two reactions to the idea of taking part:
1) I don’t really have “aha moments,” so it wouldn’t be authentic
2) Why would I bother?
After watching videos from the first location that popped up, I decided to watch videos from San Francisco. That’s what sold me. I realize that this is just another way for Mutual of Omaha to try to make us like them, but it’s insidiously wonderful in a weird little way. As soon as I switched to San Francisco—though the trailer, the lighting, and the editing were the same—it was a whole new experience. Those were San Franciscans I saw on the screen. It was so cool to see my former city of residence, the place that I always wanted to live until I lived there, and then always wanted to go back to when I could, represented in this funny little modern sociological experiment.
It felt cool. I decided to do it.
Then I had to find my “aha.” As I said, I don’t really think that way. But once I did, what I wanted to talk about became obvious.
I’m not saying you should go watch me, but I will say that this is a fun and curiously interesting portrait of America that those fuddy duddy insurance guys are bankrolling. I got very little time to chat with the crew, but I could see why they enjoyed their jobs so much.
Choose a city and watch! It’s lovely in a weird, millennial sort of way.
And, OK, you can watch mine here: