If you have seen the viral video of frozen pants sticking a landing in the snow during the past week, you are far from alone.
The video — viewed now up to 25 million times — was shot on Jan. 30 in Maple Grove, Minn., in subzero temperatures during the recent Polar Vortex.
But the video, taken by Virginia native and College of St. Scholastica of Duluth associate professor Danika Brinda, may never have gone viral if not for a suggestion by her former hometown baby-sitter.
The video, taken in slow motion, shows Brinda’s 10-year-old daughter Piper launching a pair of frozen-stiff leggings into the air, where they flip and twist before sticking a perfect landing, standing straight up in the snow.
Brinda posted the video to her Facebook page the evening of Jan. 30, with the hashtag #FrozenPants.
Her former baby-sitter, Vicky Merten of Mountain Iron, saw the video and asked Brinda to make it a public post so others could share it.
And the flying frozen pants craze took off from there.
Brenda thought it was “insane” when the post had been viewed and shared thousands of times, she said by phone Friday.
Now, it has about 10 million views “on my Facebook account” and has been watched some 25 million times via various social media and news outlets, she said.
The video has aired online on BuzzFeed. It was shown on ABC’s “Live with Kelly and Ryan.” Brinda has been interviewed by news and radio stations in Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Japan and Germany — “all over,” she said.
The video was shown on stations in Tampa, San Diego, Phoenix, to name a few.
Brinda’s parents, Doug and Maribeth Ganoe of Virginia, who live in Mesa, Ariz., during the winter “are the talk of their retirement park” thanks to the frozen pants.
“The video made my day,” said Merten, who baby-sat Brinda and her siblings years ago. “By this time of year, everyone has cabin fever. It was nice to see people outside having fun” — even in the bitterly cold weather.
Merten said she asked Brinda to make the video sharable, so it could brighten other people’s day, as well. She even told Brinda to share it with The Weather Channel.
By the next day, the video had been shared thousands of times.
And The Weather Channel did, in fact, post the video, with a caption reading: “Who cares if the wind chill is -50 degrees if you can do this.”
Brinda said she got the idea from social media photos of frozen-stiff pants standing up in people’s yards. Her youngest daughter Piper was “going stir crazy” while on Day 3 of being home from school, canceled because of the cold.
The two had already accomplished other fun subzero tricks, like making a frozen banana hammer, tossing boiling water into the air and watching it freeze before it hit the ground, and blowing frozen bubbles.
They then decided to freeze a pair of Piper’s leggings. “We stuck them in a bowl of water and hung them from a bird feeder” at their Maple Grove home. The pants “froze in 90 seconds.”
Piper first began tossing the pants through the air “like a paper airplane,” said her mom. She then flipped them in the air. On that second try, Brinda decided to take a video.
And that’s when it happened. The pants — like a talented gymnast — stuck the landing.
CBS News, in fact, tweeted about the video: “Move over, @Simone_Biles. These frozen pants just stuck the landing.”
“It was really a million-to-one shot to stick the landing like that,” Merten said.
“We laughed for so long afterward,” Brinda said.
The “biggest thing” the mom learned, however, is “how much you can’t control” social media.
People were commenting that the video was Photoshopped, and someone even did Photoshop a gymnast flying in the pants.
“I am seriously laughing at all the people discussing how my #FrozenPants video was photoshopped,” Brinda said on a Facebook post Feb. 1. “I wish I was good enough to know how to photoshop that lol! It is #legit people — shot in slow motion from my #iPhone7 in my front yard.”
Brinda further posed a version of the video without slow motion.
Piper “thinks this is all hilarious,” said her mom. “She thinks she is a YouTube star now.” After all, “every kid wants to be a YouTube star.”
Piper tried to recreate the stick landing the day after the video was filmed, but no such luck.
But the “Christmas baby,” born in mid-winter, is continuing to love the wintertime, Brinda said of Piper.
She, however, feels differently.
“I wish this meant I could retire and move somewhere warm.”
But, no such luck.