Knowing the sort of stuff The Yes Men do, such as distributing 80,000 copies of a fake New York Times that announced the end of the Iraq War, you might expect them to operate out of an undisclosed, possibly underground location on the outskirts of New York City.
But on Tuesday afternoon, Igor Vamos, one of the group’s two core members, was sitting in broad daylight on the 5th floor of 20 Cooper Square in downtown Manhattan. As of last year, the gonzo pranksters and their half a dozen coworkers have occupied a long desk in a spacious, cubicle-filled office owned by New York University’s Hemispheric Institute for Performance and Politics.
Seated beside Vamos, Mary Notari, a Yes Men employee (“I’m the Yes Ma’am,” she joked), was vocally brainstorming ways to incorporate Obama’s “horses and bayonettes” quip into a clever Yes Men Tweet. Vamos and Notari were both in full promotion mode, having launched a Kickstarter campaign for a new documentary, The Yes Men Are Revolting, at 9 p.m. on Monday night.
That specific date and time may seem arbitrary, but Vamos, who goes by the Yes Men alias Mike Bonanno, explained the greater significance.
“We’ve got an astrologist friend who suggested we launch last night,” he said, looking tired but content in a red plaid button-down that exposed a rakish swirl of chest hair. “There’s a lot of conventional logic on Kickstarter about when to do it. But we thought: Why not be in sync with the universe?”