Streaker Interrupts News Show

( The Today Show, which has long broadcast in front of windows looking out onto the New York City street, got a bit of a surprise Monday when streaker ran past as the show was on the air.

The show was just coming back from a commercial break when co-host Craig Melvin mentioned that they had seen a “naked runner.” And just as he mentioned it, the streaker ran by again.

The show’s hosts quickly descended into chaos prompting the director to cut right back into a commercial break:

That’s quite a far cry from the people who hold up signs reading “Hi Mom!”

Fortunately for the network, the Today Show logo on the windows blocked the naked man’s lower half from the viewers.

This bizarre tradition of streaking (running while naked) became popular on American college campuses in the 1960s. And by the early 1970s streaking hit the mainstream with naked guys running across baseball fields, interrupting tennis matches. One streaker even interrupted the 1974 Academy Awards broadcast when actor David Niven was about to announce the Best Picture winner. It became one of the most famous Oscar moments in history – mostly because of the quick-thinking humor from Niven.

But even as it spread to sporting events and awards shows, streaking remained a mainstay of college campus life.

At Austin State University in Texas, streaking became such an epidemic, administrators provided both time and designated space for students to run naked.

In March 1974, 1,543 students at the University of Georgia staged a naked jogging event.

Streaking became such a common part of 1970s culture that in 1974, country singer Ray Stevens immortalized the fad with his song “The Streak.”

Today’s streaking trend is largely fueled by social media. Popular YouTuber VitalyzdTV disrupted the 2016 NBA finals game in Cleveland rushing onto the court in a state of semi-dress with “Trump Sucks” sharpied onto his chest and “Lebron 4 President” on his back. The brief YouTube video of VitalyzdTV getting tackled and removed has over seven million views on YouTube. No 1970s streaker can boast anything close to that kind of … well … exposure.

But on college campuses, where the streaking fad was born, the current campus climate has all but ended the tradition.

The once wildly popular Bun Run at Notre Dame University has become a source of well-I-nevery indignation among the student body. With today’s campus environment, getting spotted running naked through the quad is more likely to get you pegged as a sex offender than a happy-go-lucky, devil-may-care prankster.