The Man Who Supports His Family by Farting in PublicPosted on Aug 19, 2011 in Blog
Interview with Entrepeneur and YouTube Sensation Jack Vale
While working on the ultimate interactive encyclopedia of flatulence, it seemed to make sense to get the straight poop from a great icon of fartdom. We spoke with Jack Vale — the inventor of The Pooter.
The Pooter is described as the “world’s most realistic fart maker.” The Pooter has been a great success with current monthly sales hovering around 2,500 units. The Pooter is now available in Spencer’s Gifts stores around the nation and it sounds like it may be available in some big box stores soon as well.
After inventing The Pooter, Jack wanted to demonstrate how well it works. So he started making fart gag videos and posted them on YouTube. The hilarious videos struck a chord with the public and along the way, Jack Vale became an internet sensation. With over 40 MILLION video viewings, Jack has gained enough notoriety that his own reality television show is already in the works.
Jack was gracious enough to talk with Creature about his amazing gag invention and his booming comedy career.
What inspired you to create The Pooter?
Well there was another product on the market that was real similar. Leslie Nielson used to use it. This was probably 15 years ago and I picked one up at a gag shop in Hollywood and I absolutely loved it. A short time later, I could not get them anymore. I called every magic shop in the world, every gag shop and I could not find it.
I was really disappointed because, as that was happening, all of the fart machines were starting to come out and getting real big. Everybody started having a fart machine and I dispise fart machines because they sound so stupid…and I never found one that was even good. I mean they came out with a different version, the Fart Machine 2, the Electric Whoopee Cushion or whatever. Every time they come out with one it is supposed to be better, but they are awful.
So the thing I like about this one, it is almost like you see now. It is air coming out of a small hole and it is almost like you blew on the side of your arm or something and made a legit fart sound. So after being frustrated that I could not find it anywhere, I found out about the company. They stopped making them. There was some sort of business problem they were having and for years and years you could not find them anywhere. Every link I clicked on to try to buy one was an old link or outdated.
So that is what happened. I thought I can make it better, make it last longer maybe, and just kind of redesign it. So I redesigned it and kept the same idea. That’s how it happened. Got a prototype and started mass-producing them.
Will we be seeing The Pooter in Target and Wal-Mart soon?
Yes I hope so. I signed a deal recently with RS Toys, which is a toy manufacturer. They do all of the stuff for Rob Drydek and the Metal Militia. So they took over the Pooter and are mass-producing them in Hong Kong. They just became available in Spencer’s Gifts. There in all of the Spencer’s stores and that was kind of a testing ground for us. They are doing really well in Spencer’s. Target and Wal-Mart both said if they were doing well in Spencer’s they would consider taking them. We are just kind of waiting now.
Did you ever imagine you would be selling thousands of them every month?
No, not really. What happened was once we had them for sale, once we got to selling 5 or 6 a day we thought we were doing pretty good. And now we are shipping out anywhere from 50 to 100 orders a day, or something like that. And people are buying 2,3, or 4 of them.
So I am guessing this has become a full time business for you now.
Yes it has. In fact, it got so overwhelming that the Jack Vale Films stuff started going crazy, just in general as a comedy channel. So I started getting heavily involved with that, which I am now and we hired someone to handle the orders and the office. It is just easier every day too.
What were you doing for a living before you became a flatulence tycoon?
I had a business that we had for ten years. I was an Internet marketer. We had a website and kind of dabbled in Hollywood memorabilia. I used to do some acting, so we would get invited to movie premieres and stuff like that. So we would go to parties and award shows and get autographs and pictures and stuff like that and sell them on the website. We did pretty well with that for quite a few years.
Well I guess that is in the backburner now?
Yes were are done. We sold that a long time ago and we have been finished with that for five years now I think.
Let me ask you about the performances, about the videos. I know it is old hat for you now, but when you first started doing them, did you struggle getting the nerve to fart in public?
Ya you know what. I really did. You know farts are funny. If you are sitting in a public place and you hear the noise — it’s hilarious. But if you do it yourself, it is the most mortifying thing in the world to think that anybody thinks that it is you. Whether it is fate or not, this thing sounds so legit. Do you have one?
No, I need to order one.
Oh man, wow. Well send our customer service an email and tell them that you were the one that interviewed me today and remind them I said to ship you one. They will ship it out to you tomorrow.
Wow thanks. I know my son will definitely love it. I know that for sure.
Yes you know it sounds so legit, I just love it. You know with a fart machine, you press a button and people go “haha, OK who has the fart machine.” Almost like “who is the idiot in the room?”
Yes, we have one. It has just been sitting in a drawer for five years.
Yep the Pooter sounds totally legit, nobody ever questions whether or not it is a fart machine. Everybody always assumes somebody really did the deed.
Well you can tell by the videos, the reactions that people have.
Ya exactly, there is never a question like “you have a stupid machine” or something. So that is what I like about it and that is I think one of the reasons that when I first went out with the Pooter, with the prototype in my hand it was a little embarrassing because there is no getting around like “hey it’s just a joke”. You know you have to pull it out and show someone to get them to believe it. If you walk up to somebody after you just used the Pooter and try and tell them it was fake, they won’t believe you.
I see some people get very angry with your farting near them, have any encounters turned ugly yet?
Are you kidding? You have not seen the video yet? You need to go on my site and check it out. A few weeks ago a guy punched me in the face. The video is called “I Got Punched”.
I farted near an old lady and her husband, they were both on those electric carts. He took offense to the farting and chased me down. It was all captured on video. The police came and everything. I tried to tell him that it was just a joke, I even pulled out the Pooter and showed it to him. I tried to explain to the officer this is what it is, this is what I do. He said “you can put the Pooter away Jack, I know who you are.” So he was kind of laughing and he thought it was funny and they gave me an option to have him arrested and all of that. But I would just have to go to court and all of that. Plus he is an old guy, so I just so “no, just let him go.” They said if we let him go, he’s still never going to be able to come to this Target again, he’s banned from the store permanently. I said “well that is punishment enough” and we just left it at that.
So are you afraid of your safety here on out?
[Laughs] No. Haha. No, two days later I put up a new Pooter video. No, still making videos.
Ok. Are there any products you are going to follow this up with or are you just going to stick with The Pooter for now?
I am not really an inventor or anything like that. This was more for fun than anything else. I never thought I would be selling 2,500 of these things a month. That’s about where I am right now, so I think I will probably just stay with this and the more the comedy things goes…you know I’ve got t-shirts and all that kind of stuff. So other than that, it is the only kind of product I’m gonna have.
I see other comedians doing farting videos using The Pooter. How do you feel about that?
Do you mean just like people on YouTube?
I think it’s great. I have absolutely no problem with it at all. It’s always nice when somebody puts something in the description about “go buy the Pooter” and they put a link in there or something. I have kind of asked for people to do that. There is nothing anybody needs to do, other than that. You know if they can do that, it’s cool and I think it is the highest form of compliment for somebody to go out and use your product to make their own videos. I encourage it. I think it is fun.
Cool. What can we expect to see from you in the future?
I am doing a lot of new things. The good news is I am going to continue to do new Pooter episodes. I am at number 127, I think is the most recent one. I am planning on continuing. In the end I will probably have thousands of them — I am going to keep doing them. I just need to mix it up a little bit and in between put out all the other videos I am doing too. One thing I am going to do, is to be a bit more eh, you know just come up with some new ideas like farting in the elevator.
I did 4 of those. There are some different areas, different things I am going to use the Pooter in. Usually I am out in stores or elevators — somewhere public. I am going to start meeting people at the house and have them in the office, Craigslist people and stuff like that. Then when they get here I am going to make them feel uncomfortable.
An intimate business meeting would be great. You have a group of people, but there is the one guy who keeps on farting all the time.
Ya, what I will do is interviews like for hiring or something like that. We have done that kind of stuff before when people come and submit an application and we get it on video. I give them $25 or $50 for their time, because they are trying to get a job or whatever. Get them on video and get them to sign a release form and we are good to go.
Do you think we might be seeing a Jack Vale feature film some time soon?
You know probably. As far as I can tell, it is nothing I have any real control over. I do have agents and managers and stuff like that to handle other things that are in the works. Like other TV shows with Warner Brothers and some other stuff like that. But that is just going to be scripted and…there is a reality show in the works. It is just going to be called “The Jack Vale Show”, about a guy…myself, who supports his family by farting in public. It’s on the table and they thought it was a good concept for a show, so I am looking forward to filming that. It will be a blast.
So is that already a done deal?
It’s a done deal in terms of funding for it and producing it. We have already shot stuff for it and things like that. As far as where it makes its bed, we don’t know that. E and some other networks are interested in taking a look at it right now, so we’ll see.
Wow that is great. Super. I really appreciate your time. Thanks for the free Pooter too!
Absolutely you are welcome. Keep me informed on the development of your app and I wish you all the best with that.
Yes I will and I will hook up with you on Twitter as well. Thanks a lot Jack and best of luck with all of those exciting projects.
Absolutely, thank you.