Sam Jeschke came through for us. Plain and simple. He was faced with the opportunity to bring legendary musician, (or DJ, or music producer, or just music person? The jury’s still out on what his exact title is) DJ Khaled, to Madison, knowing full-well that failure would bring endless shame from his fellow students, and for once exceeded the “freshmen suck” moniker. Jeschke, “Veni Vidi Vici’d,” the shit out of those Mentos, and kudos to him.
If this sounds like fake news, that means you probably weren’t one of the thousands attending the last football game, haven’t seen the marketing campaign promoting Jeschke, gotten Mentos from him, and/or have elected to begin the year by boarded up in your bedroom to dig deep into Netflix’s selection (Anime is always too deep), Sam Jeschke was given the task to hand out 43,000 (the rough estimate of the amount of students at UW) bottles of Mentos Gum in order to earn a free concert by, yes, the DJ Khaled. It’s also not fake news that he completed the challenge successfully.
It is, however, hard to know whether or not the campus itself or Jeschke is more grateful that he succeeded.
One can’t help but think that if he had failed, his life on campus would’ve been quite awkward to say the least. Mentos plastered his face across campus, and it was up to Jeschke, and Jeschke alone, to get the free concert for all fellow Badgers. Failure with that kind of pressure, would’ve made the endless get-to-know-you’s that come with the start of the new year, easy, but for all the wrong reasons: “Hi my name is Sam Jeschke, I’m a freshmen, and a fun fact about me is I’m the reason everyone didn’t get to see DJ Khaled.” Thankfully, (for Jeschke’s sake) he succeeded, and Badgers are eternally grateful —especially considering the most recent incarnation of the perpetually unknown Freakfest lineup.
Gratitude towards Jeschke will also, inevitably, be mixed with some scorn at the fact that Jeschke gets free tuition (particularly by out-of-staters, who are already looking into posting their kidneys for sale on Facebook’s Marketplace), but that scorn will only come to mind when the first payment deadline rolls around.
Mentos stated, through a spokesperson to The Daily Cardinal here on campus, that the challenge itself was to prove that their gum is a, “Great way to help make connections.” *Sigh* Everyone is well aware that one’s connections freshmen year are actually made up of discerning the weird from the interesting, and the sane from the lunatics, in one’s dorm, and finding out who’s going to take care of you on meandering and cold walks home from bars and parties.
So who knows what Mentos’ real angle in making this challenge was, other than finding out how much of their gum ended up going directly into the trash after leaving Jeschke’s possession. Apparently it worked for Jeschke, as he remarked, “I have been able to meet so many people from across campus that otherwise I probably wouldn’t have gotten to meet.” One can only hope that at least some of those people will actually view Jeschke as the person that he is, instead of “The Mentos Guy” for all of time. If not, well, at least he can meet up with Yik Yak and celebrate the good ol’ days.
For now, have a beer on us, Mentos guy. Shit he’s a freshman isn’t he? Well have some… Mentos we guess, surely there’s still a few stray packs out there, you’ve earned it.
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