They say there's no such thing as an overnight success, but try telling that to John Edwards, 29, of Deer's Leap Gulch, MA. Just last week, Edwards was, in his own words, "a loser, living with [his] folks and basically going nowhere," but all that changed when Edwards received a retweet from funny man Frank Caliendo. Overnight, a nation that had to that point largely ignored the William Henry Harrison High School drop out, found itself addicted to Edwards's twitter feed for his sharp wit, outspoken political beliefs, and self-described "real-talkisms."
"I'm always on the lookout for new talent on twitter," said Larry Hughes, a senior partner at the accounting firm of Price and Moorer. "Usually, I follow up and coming leaders in the business world, politicians, and other thought leaders who our clients are talking about. And when I saw John Edwards show the entrepreneurial spirit to leverage his birthday into a retweet from that guy who does the funny Dr. Phil impression, I just knew we were looking at greatness."
David Miller, a reporter at WPOD, the Deer's Leap Gulch NBC affiliate, concurred. "What I found so impressive about John's request was that he wasn't too obvious about it. He didn't do something desperate, like asking Caliendo to retweet a clever joke or cogent argument, which would look like he was showing off. Instead, he just asked Caliendo to share with his thousands of followers the fact that John Edwards had asked for a retweet. That made me want to know more. I think that made all of us want to know more."
And know more we all soon did. Within hours of receiving the retweet from Caliendo, Edwards had soared from 14 followers - 6 of whom were pornography website spambots that followed him back as a courtesy - to over one million, as a nation came together to learn from its newest wunderkind.
The next morning, Edwards awoke to find his Boost Mobile prepaid cell phone ringing off the hook. "I got a call from Henry Luce's grandson, just begging me to write for The Time Magazine. When I asked what that was, he explained it was sort of like Maxim, but for facts." "Pretty boss," Edwards added, while acknowledging he still wasn't entirely sure about the link between the magazine and Morris Day. Despite the lucrative opportunities, Edwards has decided to stick with what works for the time being. "I'm going to focus on my twitter feed, that way I can speak to my public, unfiltered," Edwards commented over an "Edwards Breakfast," of 3 eggs, bacon, sausage, and a pint of Smirnoff in a Big Gulp of Diet Sprite. "I haven't decided how I want to monetize this opportunity just yet. Maybe I'll see if I can be a contributor to a evening news broadcast, like that Joe the Plumber guy did, or maybe if everything really comes together, I can parlay this into an appearance on Tosh.0," Edwards said, gesturing heavenward with both hands.
Despite everything that's happened, Edwards says people shouldn't expect him to change. "I'm still the same guy. I'm still going to tell it like it is with no corporate bs. The NSA can't bring me down," he said, accidentally confusing the government spy agency with some sort of imagined Wall Street villain. Nor will he forget how he got here: he remains a big fan of Caliendo, even as his million followers dwarf that of his former mentor. "I'd love to work with the guy someday," Edwards mused. "I do a great Shaquille O'Neal impression," Edwards added, robotically gesturing with his arms in an apparent attempt to replicate the mannerisms of the retired NBA big man. With one last sip through the straw of his Big Gulp, Edwards is on his way. Slipping into his brand new 2014 Ferrari 458, Edwards turns and flashes a thumbs up. "Keep it real, bro," he intones, just before he's drowned out by the sounds of former Rush singer Geddy Lee's 2000 hit, My Favourite Headache, blasting from his stereo.
Keep it real, Johnny B. Edwards. We know you will. Keep it real, indeed.
UPDATE: Donald Trump recognizes a man of action when he sees it.
@realDonaldTrump I could give you a big sloppy kiss right now, you big lug.
— john b Edwards (@johnnyb23390) January 15, 2014