Vinnie Pearl

My friend Bill and I love to pick on Vinnie.  He’s an easy, fun target!

First, let me start near the beginning.  We all know each other through our photography and we sometimes go on outings together.  Vinnie let it slip one day (3-4 years ago) that he enjoys taking photos of flowers.  There’s nothing wrong with that, of course, but it did open a door for Bill and I to pick on him.

One day while shooting waterfalls Bill had his fisheye lens on and took a shot of Vinnie.  Bill Photoshopped some makeup on him, added french nails and changed his coat to purple.  When I got it I added a Minnie Pearl hat and ever since then Vinnie’s been known as “Vinnie Pearl”…or “Pearl” for short.

Fast forward to September 2008.

Some bison were let out about 25 miles from my house and wound up on our lawn a couple times.  When my two goats saw them they freaked out and ran towards their shed where they stopped and went to the bathroom out of fear!  I told Vinnie about it because I thought it was funny.  Knowing about our upcoming trip to the Tetons (9/13-9/21) and my mother’s fear of bears, Vinnie then asked, “Is that what your mother’s going to do when she sees a bear??”  I told my mother, of course, and she said, “Oh really…he said that?  I’ll fix him!”

So, as I was planning my trip, Vinnie was planning his, too.  You see, he had chosen the week after me and we didn’t even know.  Not only that, we would both be spending time at Signal Mountain Lodge!

Once my mother realized we were staying at the same lodge, she put her plan into action.  She purchased a pair of underwear knowing that we’d later buy a chocolate bar and create some “skidmarks” in them (as if she saw a bear) and leave them at the desk for Vinnie. LOL  We were leaving the lodge on Friday and he was arriving the next day.  It was perfect because he had asked if I could leave the literature he let me borrow with the front desk.  So, we put the “soiled” undies in the envelope with the literature.  I asked the young lady at the desk to give the package to Vinnie the next day.  I also asked if she would help me “get even” with him by playing a joke on him.  She was very eager and more than willing.  “Oh, we’ll get him for ya!!”  So, I wrote up a little note as we left the lodge that Thursday morning.  My instructions were clear…when Vinnie goes to check in, tell him you can’t find his reservation.  Let him panic for a minute and then say, “Let me check again.” and then, “Hmm, we don’t have a Vinnie Collins, but we do have a Pearl Collins.”

I called Vinnie at the lodge Saturday night from Denver.  I couldn’t believe it, but the girls actually did it!  Vinnie said he was like, “Umm, yes, you do have my reservation.” and the girls started giggling.  When he heard “Pearl” he knew he had been had!  He found the underwear in the envelope and had to admit that we really got him good.

Mom and I returned home on Sunday and I immediately called Bill.  He was cracking up at our little prank.  I told Bill, “Wait a day or two and call Vinnie at the lodge with another prank.  What can we do??”  We came up with yet another plan…!

Bill called the lodge and asked for Vinnie’s room.

B:  “Hello, Vincent Collins?”

V: “Yes?”

B:  “This is Jack from the front desk.  I’m sorry to inform you, but we believe your vehicle was just involved in a minor accident.”

hehe…  I’m not sure what was said by Vinnie next, probably a “What happened?” or something, but Bill wound up saying,

B:  “We know it was your vehicle by the woman’s underwear we found inside.”


What was really funny about that is Vinnie confessed to Bill that he literally had just walked in the door a few minutes before he called.  He said he parked a little crooked or too close to the car next to him and thought, “I should probably move my car a little.” but then decided it would probably be fine.  Ahh, the stars aligned!

So now fast forward to present.

April Fools’ Day is tomorrow and Bill and I have been scheming.  We decided to use that famous “Vinnie Pearl” photo for a poster.  We came up with the VISA card theme of “PRICELESS”.  On Saturday I sent out 15 color posters along with a note to the attention of the receptionist.  We requested that the posters be hung around the building and distributed to coworkers.  bwahaha!  He’s going to kill us.  So, if either of us come up missing or dead, Vinnie Pearl did it!

Here’s the poster (clickable thumbnail):


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