Surprise! You’ve entered a choose-your-own-adventure article. The first few paragraphs we’ll all read together, but then you’ll be presented with a choice: To jump ahead to the final paragraphs, enjoy the considerable feel-goodery and go about your day or to read just a couple more paragraphs and have that feel-goodery diminished only slightly in a satisfyingly righteously-indignant way. The choice is yours! And in both versions, the longboarding “Dreams” guy gets a brand new truck and a fuck-ton of Ocean Spray.
So, remember this gent? We’re sure you do, but felt like we should check—after all, Nathan Apodaca first posted his “Dreams” Tik Tok on September 25, which at this moment in history feels like it was about three months ago.
As the above video specifies, Apodaca’s Tik Tok stems from two presumably totally unrelated factors in his life: First, car trouble, which led him to this vibe of a commute, and second, his status as a father of girls, who led him to Tik Tok in the first place. Apodaca now has over a million followers on both Tik Tok and Instagram; he’s got a manager, an agent, and a video of Mick Fleetwood “skateboarding” and drinking juice. One does not wish to tempt the wrath of the milkshake duck, but it really seems like it couldn’t’ have happened to a nicer guy. Here’s an excerpt from a great profile of Apodaca in the Post Register:
Apodaca has received more than $20,000 in donations from viewers. He gave $5,000 to his mother and bought his dad a truck. Only his sister has turned his generosity down.
“I was like I know you need a washer, a dryer, a stove, we can go get it right now. … She’s like ‘I’m stable enough, you do you, as soon as you get your house and you’re stable then you can go ahead and give me something,’” Apodaca said.
That’s his biggest dream right now: to get a house for his family. Until recently, that seemed impossible. Now, a local real estate agent has reached out and offered to help Apodaca make a down payment on a home, Apodaca said.
Yet for all his newfound fame, Apodaca could not seem more down to earth. He scoffs at the idea of being starstuck by celebrities, saying they’re all just human like the rest of us. Starting Monday, he is taking a break from his potato factory job with his boss’s blessing. But he fully expects to return in six months when all this blows over.
“It’s just weird and crazy to me because I feel normal still. But I feel a little more comfortable now because I just don’t have to wake up and just worry. Everything seems like it’s coming in line now. It’s a blessing, no doubt,” he said.
AdWeek notes that Ocean Spray has remained pretty quiet on what certainly must have been the most positive news cycle for the brand since the invention of the Urinary Tract Infection. But that changed yesterday, when the CEO of Ocean Spray posted a video of his own and the company gave him a brand new cranberry red truck packed with Ocean Spray swag.
He has, of course, already done his first car singalong.
Here’s where you can jump ahead and end the story on a purely cheery note, if you want! Just look for the bold heading that says “Hey, end here!”
It’s worth pointing out that a car, while obviously a valuable gift and a particularly useful one given the circumstances that led to the video’s creation, is not a big fat check nor an ongoing income stream. As Tik Tok grows increasingly ubiquitous and creators become more and more visible, there can and should be pressure for corporations to compensate the people who wind up, inadvertently or otherwise, generating loads of free publicity for brands. If they make you money, you should pay them.
That Post Register profile mentions that Ocean Spray “has hinted it is looking into a collaboration,” so it’s possible that this is already in process. Apodaca’s agent and manager are presumably hard at work getting their client paid. And the new truck is nice! It’s a good start.
Presumably there’s lots more to come from Apodaca, who has a whole world full of chill tunes to which to board and a literal truck filled with juice to drink. As for us, we’re just glad to see a nice thing happen to a laid-back, cranberry-loving guy.
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