Move over, Chewbacca mask lady! America is now obsessed with the water-bottle-flipping guy, Mike Senatore. The Ardrey Kell High School senior has become an overnight sensation for his ability to flip a water bottle and make it land standing upright.
Senatore, 18, showed off his unique skill set during the senior class talent show on Tuesday morning and by the next day, his stunt had gone viral. The University of South Carolina-bound student is now making the rounds of local TV news and his friends have already started the campaign to have him guest on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
Here’s what you need to know.
1. The Auditorium Went Crazy When Senatore Landed the Trick
Video from nearly every angle was taken while Senatore pulled off his trick. It’s hard to get an exact view count given how many different videos of the stunt there are but one student told The Charlotte Observer it had to be in the “hundreds of thousands.”
The popular Ardrey Kell student set up a black TV dinner tray in the middle of the stage and walked up to it as Jorge Quintero’s 300 Violin Orchestra played. Approaching the table to quickly, he had to slow down twice, but his execution looked planned down to the second. He finally stops, flips the bottle and it lands upright, sending his classmates into a frenzy as he walks off stage.
His best friend Wesley Manning posted the video first to his Twitter (see above). The post has been retweeted more than 47,000 times and liked more than 69,000 times.
2. Senatore Had His Talent Show Performance Planned Since Last Year
Senatore discovered his hidden talent during chemistry class last year, he told The Charlotte Observer. Bored in class, he flipped a bottle into the air and it landed upright. It wasn’t a fluke.
The high school senior kept practicing when things got slow at the Auto Bell (car washing chain) and he once landed the trick 30 times in a row. All he wanted to do for the talent show was flip the bottle, he told the Observer.
I actually had the idea for about the whole year – I’m going to flip the bottle at the talent show. I want to be in the talent show and it’s the one thing I can do.
3. He Swears by Deer Park Water Bottles
Senatore can flip a variety of water bottles, but there’s one specific brand he uses to make sure the trick works most effectively.
“I can flip most bottles,” Senatore told The Charlotte Observer, “but if I’m going to flip it and feel confident about it, it’s going to be Deer Park.”
The 16.9 ounce bottles of Deer Park Water, sourced sustainably in the Mid-Atlantic where Senatore lives, have an hourglass-like shape. He then fills the bottle with water up to the third indentation line from the bottom. A full bottle causes it to bounce on impact and an empty bottle is too lightweight.
4. Senatore Is One of the School’s ‘Most Spirited Individuals’
Senatore’s principal at Ardrey Kell, David Switzer, described his now famous student as “one of the most school spirited individuals,” he told The Charlotte Observer. He attends nearly every sporting and extracurricular event for the school.
It’s nice to see the positive things that kids do. He’s real spirited, dresses up all the time, was a student leader over the years. He’s got a great spirit about him.
Senatore doesn’t expect his newfound fame to last more than a few days. He hopes it’s not all he’s ever known for but said it’s “cool and awesome” to be recognized. “But it’s only Twitter fame.” He plans to attend the University of South Carolina in the fall and major in political science.
I can’t imagine it’s going to get bigger than this, as if my whole life is based on flipping bottles. I’m still just focused on college. It’s the end of senior year so I get to enjoy all of it.
5. He’s a Fan of the Chewbacca Mask Lady
Senatore’s viral video comes on the heels of the Texas woman whose joyous reaction to her new Chewbacca mask had everyone smiling last week. Candace Payne who first streamed her video on Facebook Live has appeared on Good Morning America and The Late Late Show with James Corden.
Senatore tweeted about Payne’s video on May 22 and wrote, “I love what the Internet can randomly do for people.”
He also got some love from Vine star Jack Johnson and his friends are trying to get him on The Ellen DeGeneres Show using the hashtag #MiketoEllen.