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It was a thing of wonder and beauty. Mattresses, dozens of mattresses, blowing through a grassy park in a veritable mattress migration. Kind of like the plastic bag scene in American Beauty, only on a much grander scale.
Such was the case in Stapleton, Colorado last weekend, when roughly 150 inflatable air mattresses had been set up for an outdoor screening of The Phantom Tollbooth.
Unfortunately, the blustery weather of Colorado had other plans, and a couple of hours before the film was to begin, winds picked up and sent the mattresses flying. The incredible scene was captured on video by software engineer Robb Manes, who uploaded it to YouTube with the catchy title: “The Great Mattress Migration of 2019.”
A video I shot went a little viral overnight: https://t.co/OBPy9VmwcA— Robb Manes (@robbmanes) August 18, 2019
After his video went quickly viral, Manes later told Denver’s CBS 4 that he and his fiancée first noticed the air mattresses in the park on their way to a trip to a local pool. Although initially they didn’t think anything of it, about an hour later storm clouds began rolling in, and so began the Great Mattress Migration of 2019.
“The wind picked up. They lowered the umbrellas under the pool, and that’s when the first air mattress kind of flew over the fence,” he told reporters. “I called it ‘The Great Mattress Migration of 2019,’ and that apparently was funny. A lot got by the pool and the buildings caught a few of them.”
Manes likewise described the unfolding scenario as “super surreal” in a Reddit post.
“It was absolutely hilarious; we just happened to be at that pool for the first time with a friend who lived nearby,” he wrote. “When the first one landed in the pool nobody was too fazed, but the second and third one made us look over the fence.”
He added: “We stood up out of the pool and we all looked at each other, and then I yelled to my wife “I have to get my cellphone!”
And thank goodness he did, because the wholly captivating Mattress Migration was all but destined to become a viral hit, as many have since shared on Twitter.
Oh look sire, the herd is on the move. https://t.co/d4stZwsn3q— National Security Counselors (@NatlSecCnslrs) August 20, 2019
MOVIE NIGHT FAIL: A movie night under the stars took a turn in Denver, Colorado on Saturday. Air mattresses laid out for ticket holders blew away in a strong wind. According to Robb Manes, who shot the video, the blow-up beds were on the loose for about 30 minutes. 😂 pic.twitter.com/MpQKa7yob6— Nate Larsen (@NateLarsenKBOI) August 20, 2019
we've all been sleeping on mattresses. they're organizing against us. https://t.co/z1KmWjYcRC— Jay R. Jordan (@JayRJordan) August 20, 2019
the flight of the bumblebee but its matresses https://t.co/6QUPCKnGlm— polar (@p01arst0rm) August 20, 2019
And then there were the inevitable mashups, as Twitter user Emma Mullan set the mattress migration to the 1988 single “Sail Away” by Enya.
There. I did it and it's perfect. pic.twitter.com/FEXHlZmjro— Emma Mullan (@EmmaLeahMullan) August 20, 2019
In case nobody else made the edit yet, I was bored: pic.twitter.com/b71cCWceCm— Uncivilized Elk (@UncivilizedElk) August 20, 2019
Although we’ll remain ever thankful for the Great Mattress Migration, you have to wonder whose idea it was to pull this kind of shenanigan in Colorado in the first place. As the saying goes, a fool and their air mattress are soon parted.
Stacey Ritzen is a reporter and editor based in West Philadelphia with over 10 years' experience covering pop culture, web culture, entertainment, and news. You can follow her on Twitter @staceyritzen.