Hot Diggity Dog, we meat the co-pilots of The Wienermobile
Let’s beef frank, who wouldn’t relish the opportunity to ketchup with Molly “Mayochup” Swindall and Spencer “Saucy Spence“ Bernhardt and discuss all the bun-derful opportunities they will experience as representatives of Oscar Mayer, parent company Kraft Heinz, and the great Wienermobile?
These two dynamo hotdogger co-pilots began their journey in June; a tour that lasts for one year aboard OSCRMYR a 27 foot long Wienermobile. OSCRMYR is one of six Wienermobiles driving across the United States at any given time.
When asked what kind of mileage these vehicles get, their quick response is, “limitless Smiles per gallon.” After six months as a team, the co-pilots will be reassigned to another team mate and begin their final six months of employment with a new co-pilot and a different area of the U.S. Molly is really hoping to get assigned to the South East part of the US as she would love for her family and friends in Georgia to experience the Wienermobile in person with her.
So in this dog-eat-dog world, what exactly did they have to do to get hired for this position?
Well Molly was in her senior year of her masters program when she discovered what appeared to be the opportunity of a lifetime. So despite her degree, she opted to apply for this position. “The opportunity to ‘meat’ people and travel the states was too amazing to pass up,” said Molly. Spencer was studying at the University of Wisconsin, Madison (“Go Badgers!”) when recruiters came to the campus. He too quickly hopped on the hot-dog express.
The two shared that they attended a two week training at Hot Dog High in Madison, Wisconsin, where they learned information about the company, how to give media interviews and interact with others at events, and a bunch of fun puns. And most importantly, they learn how to drive the Wienermobile. “We set up in a big lot with cones and all of us are driving around. It’s crazy!” They train with drivers learning to pilot peanut-shaped Planters known as the “Nutmobiles.” “We occasionally ‘meat’ up with them so we have to be very strategic on how we park” says Molly. Oh yeah, they seem to have A LOT of puns!
No commercial license is required to drive the Wienermobile, but hotdoggers do have to log their driving and work hours like truck drivers do, and all Wienermobiles undergo regular inspections with Penzke.
Hotdoggers have per diems and corporate cards for food, vehicle expenses and lodging. And they receive benefits and a competitive post-graduation salary. They have standard uniforms they must wear at events.
So what kind of information do they learn at Hot Dogger High you might ask?
Mayochup and Saucy Spence tell us that founder Oscar Mayer moved to the USA from Bavaria and began work as a butcher-boy in Detroit. In later years he moved to Chicago and founded the company in 1900 based on the principle of the promise to use quality in everything they make. Which is what the “Yellow Band of Quality” represents on their logo.
Now about that Wienermobile – it was Oscar’s nephew Karl who came up with that idea. “It was kind of a dark time during the Depression, so he thought he should make a hot dog vehicle.”
- The first wiener mobile was created in 1936 and was 13 feet long (that’s 1⁄2 the current size). So size does matter.
- The 1952 Wiener mobile is in the Henry Ford museum in Detroit
- The 1969 Wiener mobile model featured Ford Thunderbird tail lights, on a Chevy motor- home frame. It reportedly averaged 187 smiles per gallon
- Each Wienermobile has two co-pilots (that’s 12 “Hot-doggers” a year)
- Wienermobiles aren’t actually packed with hot dogs, so they’re only served if stores and other venues that host events choose to grill them up. But everyone gets a Wiener Whistle, which was first introduced in 1952.
- The Wienermobile horns sing out, “I wish I were an Oscar Mayer Wiener”
The Wienermobile has traveled to Topeka to participate in two events being held at Studio 62 in NOTO.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 27: A Painting Picnic
FRIDAY, AUGUST 28: Can’t Wait to be King (Drag King Competition)
Basically anyone can contact the corporate office and request for the Wienermobile to be available. Then based on where we are, we may get a message giving us more information on where to go next. Once we are in the area, we look for other events and options or we might just hang out at grocery store lots handing out Wiener Whistles and coupons, chat with people, take photos, attend events, do media interviews and otherwise promote the company. At times they can even take people on rides in the giant hot dog.
Moyochup and Saucy Spence will hit Route 66 next, traveling to Amarillo, TX and Flagstaff, AZ.
About that jingle
Richard D. Trentlage, the songwriter behind the Oscar Mayer Wiener Song. Before he passed, he revealed some strange details about a song that almost every American knows by heart. Trentlage remembered something his son had spoken about. Reportedly his son said he wished he were ‘a dirt bike hot dog,’ which apparently meant a ‘cool kid’ back in early 1960s America. His son wanted to be cool. So why not make Oscar Mayer hot dogs cool in the same way? And the rest is history.
Oh I wish I was I an Oscar Mayer wiener
That’s what I’d truly like to be
Cuz’ if I were an Oscar Mayer wiener
Everyone would be in love with me!