This group of friends hung a picture of themselves in a local McDonalds – and not only was it awesome, it conveyed an important message
Pranks are wonderful, but there might not be anything better in the world than a prank that has an activist message. In Houston, a group of college friends pulled off a prank at McDonalds that wasn’t just epic, it also spread awareness about Asian inclusivity and visibility.
The prank was masterminded by 21-year-old Jevh Maravilla, a University of Texas student, along with a group of his friends. After he and friend Christian Toledo saw that no Asians were represented on the walls of a local McDonalds, they conspired to add a picture of themselves on a blank wall — and it worked.
‘If you haven’t noticed, there aren’t a lot of Asians represented in the media,” he explained in a YouTube video about the brilliant operation, “and hopefully one day I could see someone like me on the big screen. So one day my bud Christian and I were eating at McDonalds, munching on some snack wraps. I look up and I see a blank wall, and I tell Christian, hey, what if we put a picture of us on there? I looked around, and there were literally no Asians on any of these walls. Maybe we could change that.”
He makes sure to mention at the end of the video that it wasn’t all for fun and games.
“Remember folks: all races deserve recognition, and I guess I did my part,” he said.
The video outlines the entire process, which included taking and editing a believable picture, getting a $7 McDonalds uniform at a thrift store, and making a fake ID tag that reads, “Regional Interior Coordinator.” The group then entered the McDonalds, waited until the coast was clear of actual employees, and quickly hung the poster on the wall.
He posted a picture of his undercover fake outfit on Twitter to tens of thousands of likes.
Of course, the internet went wild for the prank with a social justice message – his initial post has received nearly 1 million likes on Twitter. Responses ranged from people being impressed by his detailed plans, to other Asian-Americans being thankful for his creative activism.
There’s one consensus for sure: everyone wants the poster to stay up.
So far, McDonald’s hasn’t released a statement about the prank or responded in any way — but Maravilla and his friends are hoping for an eventual positive response.
“I kind of hope they will ask us to be representative models for them,” Maravilla told USA Today, “Like, for Asian men. That would be insane if they did that! It would be, like, a dream come true.”
As of yesterday, the poster was still hanging in the restaurant — over 51 days after Maravilla put it up.
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