“If you can dream it, you can do it.”
For decades this has been one of The Walt Disney Company’s guiding mantras, but it’s just as applicable to that brazen chancer who’s trying to wrangle free chicken nuggets for an entire year.
In case you need your memories jogging, 16-year-old Carter Wilkerson – a young man so fond of chicken nuggets that they’re the first thing he mentions in his Twitter bio – tweeted American fast food giant Wendy’s asking how many retweets he’d need to get for them to seal such a deal. The restaurant chain simply replied “18 million”.
Impossible. Give up while you’re ahead. Fantasy. Nothing in this world is free – not least bitesize chicken pieces straight out of a deep fat fryer. You’re out of your depth, kid.
HELP ME PLEASE. A MAN NEEDS HIS NUGGS pic.twitter.com/4SrfHmEMo3— Carter Wilkerson (@carterjwm) April 6, 2017
The internet has rallied behind the cause, and at the time of writing Carter the nugget dreamer is sitting on 3.2m.
Sure, he still needs around five times the already-ridiculous swell of support he’s had so far, but he only wrote the initial tweet two weeks ago. Statista reckon that in the fourth quarter of 2016 there were 319m monthly active users on Twitter. How many of those accounts would back a teenager’s quest for 365 days of free chicken nuggets? I reckon a lot. And Carter is really taking this seriously.
But there’s a twist in the tale. Ellen DeGeneres holds the world record (3.4m) for retweets thanks to her now-iconic Oscars selfie.
So Ellen’s photo, which encompasses no less than 12 of America’s biggest stars, one of whom is a fucking photobombing Kevin Spacey, could be surpassed in worldwide popularity by a kid who doesn’t want to fork out for his damn nuggs like everyone else. A kid who wants to waltz into Wendy’s and say: “the usual, and don’t go easy on the ketchup my dude” without producing a wallet is 0.2m away from being preferred to a visibly gleeful Meryl Streep at the most prestigious movie awards ceremony on the planet.
What the fuck is happening?
Feeling it was necessary to arrange a showdown with the man threatening her title, Ellen this week invited Carter onto her show to get his story. Enemies closer, and all that.
Cash me ousside nugget boy, howbow dah? pic.twitter.com/4vDRnAoNYu— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) April 18, 2017
As we’ve come to expect from Carter, when the host asked outright why he’s trying to sabotage the selfie, he simply replied: “You know, honestly, I just want chicken nuggets.”
Clearly aware of his relentless momentum, Ellen has promised Carter her support, providing everyone who retweets him does the same for her. She even said she’d throw in a 55” TV and a year’s supply of underwear as an incentive for him to keep promoting his competition. To be clear: Ellen DeGeneres is down for Carter’s free nuggets, as long as it’s not at the expense of her selfie’s cultural importance.
Nugget boy is here today. You know what they say... keep your friends close and your Twitter competition closer. pic.twitter.com/PA9Vfu2tY3— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) April 18, 2017
Twitter users: this is your time. If you want to help make history, if you want to stick it to the man (the man here being Wendy’s marketing team who let’s be honest are doing pretty well out of this either way), then Carter Wilkerson asks for your retweet.