With fans in high spirits about their playoff hopes, it seems that the A's can finally make a few "moribund franchise" jokes at their own expense. A new video, "Bernie Lean," released by the team in collaboration with L.A.-based rappers ATM and IMD, shows center fielder Coco Crisp, several other A's players, and fans joining ATM and IMD in a dance inspired by the dead title character of Weekend at Bernie's, which can best be described as a waggling limbo.
As far as we can tell, the Bernie craze began with a 2010 song, "Moving Like Berney," by rapper ISA, whose video depicts a corpse coming alive at a funeral and doing the dance. As Casey Pratt at CSN Bay Area explains, pitcher Jerry Blevins began playing the ISA song in the clubhouse, and third baseman Brandon Inge eventually adopted it as his walk-up song. When Inge injured his shoulder and was put on the DL, Crisp decided to keep the tradition alive by using "Bernie Lean," an entirely different song on the same topic, as his own walk-up music. The dance caught on with fans so strongly that the A's organization held a "Bernie Weekend" the last weekend of August, featuring a first pitch thrown out by Terry Kiser, who played the stiff in the original films. The ATM and IMD video was filmed the same weekend. (Here's a video interview with Pratt and the two rappers that also instructs viewers on how to do the Bernie.)
As Deadspin notes, the intro to the video that depicts Coco Crisp being hit in the head by a pitch and revived as a dancing corpse might be a little cruel in the wake of the head injury sustained by A's pitcher Brandon McCarthy last week. McCarthy took a line drive to the noggin during a game and had to have surgery to stabilize a skull fracture. Judging by this tweet after his release from the hospital, however, we think he'll be able to laugh it off:
Guess who's "a good big boy who went potty all on his own" today? This is all doing wonders for my self- esteem!— Brandon McCarthy (@BMcCarthy32) September 12, 2012