Clowning Around with Cops… Kornpop

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Pictured: Tyler, TX police officer… Tyler PD is one of Kornpop’s many beloved police departments. 

With all the upsetting news we see on TV and in the paper these days regarding the law enforcement community, it can be difficult to find a reason to laugh.  This is where Kornpop comes in… We first caught up with Kornpop (aka, the very talented and kind Mr. David McCullough) when some of our police department customers (Tyler Police, etc) and he started sharing fun pics to our RTUT Facebook pages in Texas.

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Pictured: Chandler, Texas police officer with one of Kornpop’s signature balloon dogs.

(If you haven’t “liked” our Facebook page in the area nearest you, by the way… please take a moment to click here and do so!)

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Pictured: Kornpop and his cop friend in Hawaii, with one of many balloon dogs.

RTUT: When did Kornpop first start interacting with police officers on a regular basis?  It seems you have quite the cult following in the police community!

 

Kornpop: Wow, how do I start! I have always admired police officers and was taught to respect and look up to them even as a young boy. When I started clowning professionally, there seemed to always be an officer or several, at the functions where I was working. Fairs, Festivals, and Community Events. They most always, are good natured and have a sense of humor. I carry a rubber chicken with me while I’m clowning, and I would act like it was a gun. The officers usually liked it when I would tell people that I was too chicken to carry a gun…

 

One time I made a 6 shooter out of balloons and gave it to an officer. Everyone around thought it was funny, so I started making them every time I worked with an officer. I had a wreck one time where I was at fault, and was in my clown makeup and wardrobe. The officer told me he felt like he was writing Santa Clause a ticket, and felt bad about it. So, on the side of the road, in busy downtown Tyler (Texas), I pulled out a balloon and made me some handcuffs. He told me to stop it, because he already felt bad. It made him smile, and I was hooked. Usually, if it’s a lady officer, I make a flower, bring out my kazoo, and play the wedding song.  Most of the time when I offer a balloon to anyone, they take it… but not always.

 

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Pictured: Kornpop with his cop friend in Moore, Oklahoma… where they were working together on tornado relief.

 

RTUT: Yes, we notice in many of your photos, you gift the officers with a balloon animal or a balloon gun or other fun work of balloon art.  What is their initial reaction?  (I can’t imagine anyone being anything other than absolutely delighted!  Even if they’re toting a real gun and decked out in body armor!)


Kornpop: I have been fortunate enough to travel on 5 continents for ministry. I always have balloons in my pocket, and always make them for officers and try to get my picture taken with them. I have pictures with Bobbies in London, officers in Egypt, Russia, and even down under in Australia. The one time I remember not being able to give a balloon away was in Germany. The officers in the airport were carrying machine guns, and I thought it would be neat to be in a picture with them. I made a balloon dog and tried to give it to one of them, and they told me to back away and that they did not want my balloon. They also didn’t want me to take their picture, so I didn’t take one… Those were big guns! (Laughs)

 

RTUT:  What is Kornpop’s most touching or memorable interaction to date with an officer? 

 

Kornpop: Most of the time, I can get a smile from the officers I encounter. They see so much in their line of work that is not pleasant, and they deal with situations that I can’t even imagine. I see it as my duty as an entertainer and a clown to brighten peoples lives when I can. One of the funny stories I have, is, I didn’t slow down quick enough coming into a small town while coming back from a birthday party, and got caught on radar by a “Local Yokel.”  When he told me what he stopped me for (speeding), he also said, “I never gave a clown a ticket before!” Being the nice guy that I am, I told him that he didn’t have to start today. He looked at me, smiled, and said, ” You’re right, I’m giving you two. You also have a tail light out.”  I don’t remember making him a balloon dog after that. (Laughs)

 

RTUT: You obviously love what you do, and you obviously love and care about the men and women who serve and protect their communities.  Kornpop’s words of wisdom to officers out there, in this difficult day and age?  

 

Kornpop: If I could say anything to the officers out there today, I would tell them how much I appreciate them. How, I can’t imagine taking the ridicule and the disrespect that they have to put up with on a daily basis. I know how much I love my job, and I can only imagine that that is why these officers do what they do everyday. They love their job, They love being able to help people, and being there when people need someone to care. Thank you officers for caring, and if I can make you a balloon dog and get a smile out of you, I am honored to do so!

 

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Pictured: David as one of his specialty characters, Poo Pop… we hear this picture was actually used as a makeshift mug shot when he was booked as Kornpop for harassing the officers at Tyler Police Department! See below…


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RTUT: Thank you so much, David, for supporting the law enforcement community and also for allowing us the pleasure of sharing these pics and stories.  Try to stay out of trouble, especially in Tyler, Texas!  And if you find yourself in Houston on September 24th, please feel free to stop by for the Grand Opening of RTUT’s latest (and fourth!) Texas location.  We will be having plenty of food, drinks, and prizes from 8:30am – 5pm there at Suite 200 of 71 Esplanade Blvd.


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For more information on Kornpop, please visit: www.kornpop.com.

What We Talk About When We Don’t Talk About Uniforms: Good Times, Sales Events, and Our Awesome Customers!

Live from the laptop, it’s Tuesday morning(ish)!  And welcome to our brand new blog.  Here we will tell the occasional joke, post funny pics, and talk about all sorts of great things like customer appreciation events, contests, and giveaways… but not uniforms.  (I’ll take the liberty of paraphrasing Harvey, RTUT’s president: “We can write about shirts for an hour. But that’s not what this blog is about!”)

But on a serious note, we are really excited to have this platform as a way of interacting with and expressing our appreciation for you… our customer!  We want to keep you up to date on things happening such as sales and special events, interview our friends in the public safety world so you can see cool things other departments and agencies are doing, and hopefully our attempts at comedy writing will give you a laugh or two.

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First off, RTUT has a lot of exciting things going on these days, especially in our social media department.  We are unfashionably late to the Twitter party (and everybody was wearing the same uniform).  All of our locations now have their very own Facebook page, so please be sure to find us on there.  We have a YouTube channel, which should also end up being a LOT of fun… especially when IACP rolls around this October! 

And we are growing!  We are up to ten locations now, including four in Texas and two in Florida.  With the recent acquisition of SPG stores, our very own Krys Banker (regional manager for Florida) is throwing a fantastic Open House party next month (save the date— August 20th… noon to 4pm at our Orlando location).  There will be great food, reps from your favorite brands such as 5.11 Tactical and Blauer, and a uniform and gear fashion show by the lovely Hooters girls.  Not sure yet what Texas plans on doing, as they’re still finishing up construction on our Houston location.  But if stereotypes are right, I understand everything is bigger in Texas.  Therefore, I’d like to use this platform to instigate some friendly rivalry as to which party will be so great it ends up with the cops being called.  (And if we do this right, the police and fire departments should already be there anyway, so it kind of works out nicely.)

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Also, our first social media contest is underway— #SelfiesWithCops.  The prize is a cool 5.11 Tactical rechargeable flashlight.  Literally, all you have to do to enter is like us on Facebook, upload a pic of your uniformed self and your civilian prop (LOL), and post it to our Facebook using the #SelfiesWithCops hashtag.  But like with all contests, we’ve had a few questions about the rules.  People asking “Does it have to be a selfie?”  or “Would using a selfie stick disqualify me?”  In an effort to answer this justly, I turned to Merriam-Webster.  Big help they were!

noun

self·ie \ˈsel-fē\

Definition of SELFIE:  an image of oneself taken by oneself using a digital camera especially for posting on social networks

So I then consulted Wikipedia, which we all know is edited by the masses and must be the unvarnished truth:

A selfie is a term for a self-portrait photograph, typically taken with a digital camera or camera phone held in the hand or supported by a selfie stick. Selfies are often shared on social networking services such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. They are usually flattering and made to appear casual. Most selfies are taken with a camera held at arm’s length or pointed at a mirror, rather than by using a self-timer.

Verdict? Selfie sticks and mirrors are not only allowed but suggested, to give yourself that competitive edge one always hears so much about. Using a self-timer will get you disqualified (it’s suspect when everybody’s arms are in the pic).  So, get to uploading and hashtagging your selfies! 🙂