Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Cuervo Nation

Recently, This American Life, the NPR weekly program of essays, memoirs, field recordings, short fiction, and found footage, re-ran a program from 2002, Plan B. "There's the thing you plan to do, and then there's the thing you end up doing. Most of us start off our lives with some Plan A which we abandon... switching to a Plan B, which becomes our life."

Act One. "It's Another Tequila Sunrise", was narrated by John Hodgeman, who started the story about "Cuervo Man" by mentioning that José Cuervo Tequila had purchased an island in the Carribbean (British Virgin Islands), and renamed it "Cuervo Nation". "They applied to the UN for independent statehood, they encouraged U.S. citizens to defect... they even tried to field an Olympic volleyball team. The whole things was a bold experiment in advertising via nation building."

My ears pricked up on that one. Cartophilia is always interested in imaginary countries and micronations. I had to find a map! The José Cuervo website for the Cuervo Nation opens with an animation of an airliner flying past Gin Island, and the boring Vodka Island, on its way to Cuervo Nation:

Followed by a satelite map of the island.

I've never been a big tequila drinker, nor do I hang out in the kind of bars that Cuervo Man might have frequented, so I missed out on this whole experiment in nation building. Thanks to NPR for bringing me up to date.

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At Tuesday, March 10, 2009 , Blogger paintandink said...

Funny enough, the instant I read "Plan B" in your Tweet, I thought, wow, This American Life just had a show on that topic.

I am embarrassed that I never thought to look for a map of Cuervo Nation (I guess I was too busy trying to get the mental image of a man with a toilet plunger on his head out of MY head), but this is so cool.

At Wednesday, July 01, 2009 , Blogger McShowoff said...

I'm the guy with the plunger on his head, and I assure you, it was bought brand new and never used in a toilet (as far as I know).

And Cuervo was none too happy with that piece on This American Life, I can tell you. Little too honest.



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