I sat down with a computer to contact viral video star Tyler Busby and discuss the U.S., vests, and Andy Warhol.
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Alex Watt: How did you get roped into doing this?
Tyler Busby: As a kid, I did a lot of shows for boys and girls called "Gingerbread Pageants." My mom put me in at a young age and my talent was singing. Of course, at such a young age I didn't realize how bad I sang. Well, one day at our church, there was this older gentleman I cant recall his name, he had been a part of the church for a while and owned a Christian Dallas cable TV show and asked me and the other boy who was on it with me to perform. I don't remember much about it except that I really didn't want to do it but at such a young age your parents can force you to do a lot of embarrassing stuff.
AW: What was your reaction when you saw it the first time?
TB: I never saw the final edited version of it on TV.
AW: What was your reaction when you saw it went viral?
TB: I remember first seeing it my senior year in high school. I was in varsity choir and varsity theatre, so when one person found it on YouTube, it spread like wild fire, and all year long that video haunted me.
AW: On a scale of hippie smoking a doobie rolled with The Constitution to bald eagle taking a bullet for The President, how proud are you to be an American?
TB: (Laughs)* I get that question a lot. Uh, well, I'm a broke 21 year old stuck with student loans, a job that barely pays my bills, no health care, and probably no social security for when I retireso you could compare that to any normal person my age, but when it comes down to it, if I had to die for any country, I would die for this one. For example, look at the NFL. There are fans out their that support a team that probably hasn't won a Super Bowl in a long ass time but they still support them. Why? Because that's the team they love, even if they suck. It's just all about believing in something. This country's completely idiotic, but it's my idiotic country.
AW: Do your friends know the video went viral? If so, do they bug you about it?
TB: When my friends at work found out about it, they played it at the end of every shift.
AW: Do you still have the vest? If so, can you put it on and take a picture for us?
AW: If you had to pick a new national anthem, what would it be and why?
TB: It would probably be "American Idiot" by Green Day, because we are so controlled by the media that it's idiotic.
AW: What's the best thing that's come from your Internet fame?
TB: Maybe a few laughs at my expense but that's about it.
AW: What's your favorite Internet video of all time?
AW: Andy Warhol once said "I think having land and not ruining it is the most beautiful art that anybody could want to own." Do you agree?
TB: I agree completely. If I could live anywhere in America, it would somewhere that's not all manufactured by shopping malls or buildings, but just miles and miles of open land.
*INTERVIEWER'S NOTE: I've always wanted to write that.