So, this blurry photo of President Clinton with the original Caine’s Arcade funpass comes with a funny story I wanted to share.
Last week, I was up in Mountainview to give a presentation at the Social Innovation Summit. The summit was amazing, with talks from worldchangers like Sal Khan, founder of the Khan Academy, and Barbara Bush, founder of the Global Health Corps. I was humbled to speak as part of Hunter Walk’s YouTube panel, and shared the story of Caine’s Arcade and the Imagination Foundation.
After the presentations, a few of the summit attendees got together for a small dinner at a nice restaurant. Barbara Bush was at the dinner, and being the daughter of a former President, recognized a few of President Clinton’s security detail in the restaurant. President Clinton happened to be at the same restaurant having dinner. Random. On our way out, as we passed President Clinton’s table, the security agents said hello to Barbara, and president Clinton got up from his table to say hi. Barbara, who had seen my presentation, graciously introduced me to President Clinton, and I had a moment to shake his hand and snap this photo before he went back to his meal.
I was looking at the photo on my phone, excited about sharing it with Caine’s fans online, when I felt a huge hand on my shoulder. I looked up to see the largest of the President’s security agents towering above me. In a deep, deliberate, no-nonsense voice, he said to me: “So, that is for personal use only, right?” I was confused, trying to process what was happening. He continued, “We wouldn’t want to see this photo posted online, implying any kind of endorsement.” Oh. I started to feel deflated. His grip tightened a little, “We would hate to get our lawyers involved.”
“Oh, OK,” I assured him, “I won’t post this anywhere.”
The security agent nodded, released his hand from my shoulder, and went back to his post. Internally, I went from excitement to disappointment, realizing I wouldn’t be able to post the photo online. Of course, I’m sharing it now, and if you’re wondering why, it’s because of what happened next…
As I was on my way out, I stopped, and decided to go back for a long shot. I went back up to the security agent, handed him my card, and told him how the funpass President Clinton was photographed with was from a short film I made about a 9-year old boy who built a cardboard arcade… at which point, the security agent interrupted me, and said: “You made Caine’s Arcade??” Um. Seriously? I told him that, yes, I was Caine’s first customer. This steel-eyed secret service type guy with giant muscles beneath fitted suit then looked at me and said: “That movie made me cry.” I stood there without words. He then leaned in, put his hand on my shoulder (in a much friendlier way), and said, “You can go ahead and post the photo.” He then took my card, shook my hand, and promised to try and show President Clinton the film.
And so, I’m sharing this photo. Hope it makes you smile.
LA Times: Caine’s Arcade makes grown men cry.
Category Uncategorized | Tags: , Bill Clinton, Funpass, Nirvan Mullick | Comments Off on President Clinton Funpass Story
If you do a lot of open ended inquiry type learning with your students than I have a great read aloud for you!! It's especially great if you do things with your students like the Caine's arcade challenge.
One of the first blog posts I ever wrote was about Caine's arcade and I wish I had known about this book before I did the activity with my students. You can click on the image below to view the book on Amazon.
The book is about a little girl who wants to make something...the most magnificent thing. She has it all planned out in her head, how it will look, how it will work, etc. Only when she made it, it doesn't turn out the way she envisioned. So she sets back to work on it, making more improvements. Eventually, she gets very upset and frustrated...so much so that she gives up.
As she reflects over all the things she made she starts to see parts of each one that she likes. And then other people do to. This gives her the motivation to start working again on a new idea. In the end she makes just what she always wanted. It still needs some work but she is quite happy with it.
I think it sends a great message to our little tinkerers. It's a great reminder to students that it might take several tries to get their creations just right, and it might never look or work exactly they way they had hoped but that they can keep trying.
I do many inquiries throughout the year and they often involve a lot of building, constructing, mess, tears, joy, perseverance and great learning.
Here is the Caine's Arcade video that inspired me to begin using inquiry to create a culture of explorers and risk takers in my classroom:
Don't forget to check out that book with your students!
DON'T MISS OUT!
Thank you! You have successfully subscribed to our newsletter.