"Do it for the Gram!"
These phrases are just some of the captions to what has long been a cultural mainstay of internet-fueled hijinks and—in this case—misdemeanors. This time, a Louisiana man did it for the TikTok, as it were, if by "it" you mean taking a dip in a Bass Pro Shop fish tank to drum (no pun intended) up likes on a video-sharing app whose raison d'être is going viral and whose sole currency is the trifecta of likes, comments, and subscriptions.
The incident took place late last week in Bossier City, LA, Fox News reported. The man's stunt attracted media coverage, after Twitter footage emerged purporting to show something—ahem—fishy afoot.
The video shows a tourist on the wrong side of the glass, reminiscent of Harry's cousin Dudley's dive through the looking glass and into the snake tank in the first Harry Potter. The person behind the camera and her companion both sound, at first, alarmed, and then, amused. They worry that the man might be under duress, before he climbs outside of the aquarium and escapes, making a speedy break for the exit.
And he did escape, too. Authorities only apprehended the fishy fugitive after he came for a second visit to the Bass Pro Shop. Breaking the Law 101, people: Never, ever return to the scene of the crime. It's not rocket science.
The shop filed a complaint with the police, claiming that they would incur costs from having to clean out the fish tank, which weighs in at an impressive 13,000 gallons. Bossier City Police said that they charged the man with "simple criminal damage to property, a misdemeanor."
In case you're wondering what this Bass bandit has to say for himself, the man is quoted as saying he did it for the TikTok, basically. He says that he posted a video, offering to do the stunt in exchange for 2,000 likes. After the video surpassed that amount, he said he didn't want to break his word.
Well, he deserves kudos for honesty, if nothing else. A man's word is his bond, after all. Sometimes thousands of strangers on the internet just endorse your petty criminal proposal. Hey, it could happen to anyone.
As Andy Warhol famously prophesized, "In the future, everyone will be famous. For 15 minutes." One hopes it was worth the fine and police record for him.