I mean wow.
In case you don’t know what I’m talking about, a 14-second film I made at the end of my coaching session last week went viral. We arenow at 3 million views and counting.
I’ve been working with Tuffie Vos for a while, as she is a brilliant voiceover talent (among other things she’s great at) and gets asked to do English voiceovers. We have been working on perfecting her American and her British accent in our sessions. In our last session on Tuesday, I asked her if I could film her saying something in one of her famous voiceover voices – she’s the voice of Tefal, Magnum, the NS, and Robijn, among others. She said ‘yes’ and then surprised me by making me a train stop! Wow. I had no idea what she was going to say, let alone in which voice! I was so honored to be a train destination. We had a good laugh about it and I posted it on my FB page (with her blessing), and before I knew it, it was picked up by every major (and minor) media platform in the Netherlands.
Dumpert.nl was the first one to pick it up and posted it without mentioning my name or the context in which the film was made (which was on my FB post when I posted the video). People who knew me recognised me, told me about it, and I was shocked to see that it had over 250,000 views in the first few hours. Out of the dozens of media platforms that covered it, only 2 organisations actually asked my permission before posting – nu.nl and nos.nl. Kudos to them.
One person even claimed my film as their own and was shot down immediately when they were asked why their name wasn’t Buffi Duberman, and how the video happened. He has about 6,000 views on his channel. I have slightly more on mine.
Although I’m no stranger to (social) media, this totally took me (and Tuffie) by surprise. (Tuffie and I had constant contact throughout this process and laughed a lot about it. She has had many follow up interviews since and is very happy people realise now how hard it is to do what she does. She makes it look so easy. Oh, and she has always said that she’s the voice of the NS in all her interviews; hence her surprised reaction when people thought I “outed her”. It’s been old news for 17 years.) We decided that in our next session we would make a film about being good to each other and helping refugees. Let’s see if that one gets 3 million views….
What was really interesting for me was the comments on all the forums. I learned so much about myself. I learned the following, for example (just a random sample of the thousands of comments):
*That I’m a bloodsucking, money grabbing cunt who created this ridiculous career in order to steal money from Dutch people.
*That I’m really hot and sexy and should show my tits in my next video.
*That I am an excellent Dutch speaker because no one could ever guess that the voice on all the trains was ACTUALLY AMERICAN THIS WHOLE TIME!
*Instead of ‘saving someone’s ass’ I should first start by showing mine in my next video. Preferably in a thong.
* I am the coolest English teacher ever.
*I am the worst English teacher ever.
*I am a fucking moron because I filmed it vertically.
*I should go back to the States immediately because no one needs me here in the Netherlands.
*The Buffi Duberman train stop that she says is actually a small village in Germany.
*We need to make a Buffi and Tuffie show.
Oh, I could go on for hours. But I won’t. I think you get the idea.
And there were also thousands of comments about how annoying the voices were from the Kruidvat and Albert Hein commercials. Funnily enough, I also coach those talented folks. I love working with them and it’s an honor to be involved in their perfection of their craft. (And no, it wouldn’t be “totally cool” or “original” to get that “Kruidvat lady” to be your voicemail message. Because she’s already mine.)
I don’t think that people realise that when they post on my YouTube channel I get a notification every time. And next to that notification there’s a ‘delete’ button. And a ‘report’ button. I’ve been pushing them a lot. You push my buttons, I’ll push those. Life can be so easy sometimes.
What have I learned from all this? I learned that I’m really ok with who I am and those comments did not hurt me as I thought they would. What hurts a lot more is how people are so quick to judge, to carve an opinion in stone, based on a flash on a screen. That worries me. The anonymity of those bullies sitting at home (OMG, are they typing all that shit while eating food from the Albert Hein that they bought at the….OMG TRAIN STATION….and wearing underwear they bought at the Kruidvat?!?! I wonder…. ) feeling bigger by trying to make people smaller. I still feel the same size. And I’m not going anywhere. (Ironically, my waiting list has gotten even longer thanks to all this exposure. Guess there IS a need for Yankee Morons after all.)
So it’s been quite an interesting past few days. How have yours been? Write me, I will always write you back!
With love and a giggle.
Yankee Moron Buffi Who Is Going Nowhere.
PS: Many of you have asked about my book funding. We are on day 12 and at 66%. It’s incredible! If you’d like to pre-order my new book “100 Ways To Save Your Ass In English”, your help is greatly appreciated and you’ll be helping 100 refugees too! Here’s how you can support it. Thank you so much!