Up until recently, an aspiring internet prankster had very little chance of getting people to jam toothbrushes into their ear canals hoping to hear sweet music. It probably just wasn’t going to happen in this lifetime. But very recently, a wonderful thing happened: Apple released its much-anticipated iPhone 7, a smartphone noticeably lacking a traditional headphone jack. Users were instructed to use faintly ridiculous wireless headphones called AirPods instead. (The name Air Bud was already taken.) Who cares that these little white plastic monstrosities look like replacement heads for electric toothbrushes? Apple’s will be done. Wherever the company wants to go, its cult-like devotees are more than willing to follow. This turn of events must have struck Julius Dein, a curly-haired, 22-year-old magician and practical jokester from London, as a comedic opportunity too good to pass up. The impish Dein threw on an Apple-branded polo shirt, grabbed some ordinary toothbrushes, and headed to a U.K. music festival to see if he could get attendees to believe that the dental hygiene instruments were actually headphones. His quest proved scarily successful.
People believe what they want to believe. That’s the message here. In retrospect, it’s the secret behind much of Apple’s success. Dein is just here to point out the folly of it all, sort of like the fool in King Lear. These festival goers want to think that Dein’s toothbrushes are the latest Apple headphones, so that’s what they become. One young man even describes them as “very elegant” in design. Dein furthers the illusion by having some accomplices stand behind the victims with speakers, creating the false impression that there really is music coming out of the ersatz AirPods. “It feels like I’m with the singer,” enthuses one lass as she presses the toothbrushes further into her ears. It would be very interesting to see how these prank victims would react if they revisited this embarrassing footage many decades from now. Yes, there was a time when Grandpa tunelessly crooned “Hotline Bling” while dancing around like an idiot with toothbrushes stuck into the sides of his head.
[via The Daily Dot]