Now we’ve all seen it all over the web, on the news, in magazines and at your local bar–some guy lying face down, arms straight close to body, on any object, a craze we all know as planking.   A month ago or so there was batmanning….yes, you read correctly like the famous super hero Batman.  If you haven’t heard or seen this fad, it’s very similar to planking, however, the person is hanging upside down while the person’s feet are grasping on to any object. 

Apparently, there’s several other similar “games” that have then developed from the original such as,  owling and horsemanning

However, this blog is not about planking, batmanning, owling or horsemanning, but about another trend filtering through our threads on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and homepages across the globe–flash mobs!

Although I’m sure many of you have seen a video of a flash mob sometime this year, here’s a quick definition for those of you living under a rock; a flash mob is defined as “a group of people who assemble suddenly in a public place, perform an unusual and sometimes seemingly pointless act for a brief time, then disperse.”

While Oxford’s Dictionary defines it as “pointless,” many can argue that it’s fun, entertaining, artistic and healthy! This phenomenon has taken over subway stations, retail stores, groceries, schools, beaches and just about everywhere.  The most amazing part of it all is that there’s also no discriminating against age, race, gender, height or weight, just a little rhythm, some coordination and a pair of dancing shoes required.  (How’s that for a step toward world peace?)

Take for instance The Bondi Beach flash mob, which took place on a beautiful beach in Sydney, Australia, where an overweight, sunburned man in a Speedo shamelessly initiates it all.

Companies have taken in on the popular concept and used it for their own advertisement such as T-Mobile’s commercial filmed in London inside Liverpool Street Station.  The participants danced to classics like “Shout”, while also integrating styles like the Waltz and the Twist.    

Or if you’re looking for a more serious and serene approach, maybe you’ll enjoy a video captured in a mall in Toronto, Canada, where a group of young individuals organized a flash mob in memory of the Japan Tsunami.

Still haven’t found your favorite? Well here’s one for all the hopeless romantics…does your partner like dancing? Music? Feel like popping the question? Why not create a flash mob?!  Two young, local couples did.  One was on UCLA’s campus and the other at Downtown Disney in Anaheim.  My favorite out of the two is found below.

If you have two left feet, no fear, you can still be a part of a flash mob.  On March 14, 2007, 50 people took part of a freeze frame in a Manchester supermarket for four minutes.  At the sound of their queue, all 50 stood still, in a frozen pose. Take a look.

After spending several hours searching on YouTube for flash mobs around the globe, I found my favorite.  It appears that the creator of this flash mob, Todrick Hall, a previous American Idol contestant, choreographs these mobs and presents them at local shopping centers and restaurants like Target, Walmart, Neiman Marcus, and McDonalds.

Whatever the case may be, whether it’s used as a marketing tool, for social awareness or just plain fun, anyone can be a part of it. 

Want to be a part of one soon? Check out flash mob forums, Facebook event pages, Twitter or sites like flashmob.com, someone in your area needs participants.  I think I might just join, who’s with me?