Cory Booker Adds Dog Rescue to Ever-Growing Résumé

America has learned an awful lot about social media-savvy Newark mayor Cory Booker over the past several months. For example, when much of the Eastern Seabord was wracked by Hurricane Sandy, Booker took to Twitter to directly address concerns of his constituents, and after one hungry Newark resident tweeted him about running out of Hot Pockets, Booker responded with words of inspiration and, as a result, the company offered coupons for free Hot Pockets to all residents. Later, we learned that he was planning to run for Senate in 2014, although Democratic Senator Frank Lautenberg responded to his intentions with a little snark. 

And over the weekend, adding to the thing we already knew about Booker being really responsive when it comes to social media, we learned that he has a soft spot for our four-legged friends, especially those left out in the cold during wintry weather. When local broadcast news affiliate WABC tweeted to locals and specifically addressed Booker about dogs being left outside to freeze on a particularly cold night, Booker stepped in to bring one pooch, Cha Cha, who had recently had puppies (thankfully, not left in the cold), to warmth and safety while her owners were visiting friends in Queens. Naturally, our cynicismas media consumers and as people have kicked in and there are already some Cory Booker "truthers" declaring this a cheap press op (see the YouTube comments to the video below for proof).

But even if it was, what, do you want the dog to freeze? Come on, now. Anyway, Cory Booker rescued a dog, and got Newark Hot Pockets, and what have you done lately? Watch the broadcast—Booker, puppies and all—below.

Newark Mayor Cory Booker Got You All Hot Pockets

Over the past two weeks, the whole country (or, at least, the part of the country that pays attention to things that are relevant) has kept an eye on the response to the destruction of Hurricane Sandy and the stupid, stupid Nor’easter that followed it. Our elected officials have been held under particular scrutiny for how they handled the storm; President Obama’s response secured an endorsement from New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg and may have swayed a number of undecided voters in his reelection.

One politician whose response to the hurricane has been celebrated around the Internet is Newark mayor Cory Booker, who took to Twitter to respond directly to his constituents who were without power, dealing with flooding, and sometimes worse. He offered hurricane evacuees into his home. But it was one particular tweet that commanded more attention from non-New Jersey residents than most. When Newark resident Tyree Humes tweeted at Mayor Booker to let him know he was “running out of hotpockets,” Booker responded, “I believe in you. I know this is a problem you can handle.” Naturally, this went viral, because the Internet.

Well, the people at the Hot Pockets company saw an opportunity, and wrote a letter to the mayor which simultaneously feels a little icky and opportunistic and also well-intentioned and a “helping the only way we know how” kind of situation. An excerpt:

“We read the tweet between you and one of your constituents referencing the fact that he had run out of Hot Pockets sandwiches, and it made us think that we could do a little bit to help. Enclosed, please find coupons for free Hot Pockets that you can give out to people who stop by your home, or anyone else you feel could use them. We’re also sending some to Tyree Humes who sent you the tweet.

We realize that there is much work ahead to rebuild and move on, but we wanted to make this small gesture to help. We wish you, the people of Newark and all those affected by the storm the best of luck in recovery, rebuilding and returning to normalcy as soon as possibly.”   

Obviously, there are things the people of Newark, and much of the Eastern Seaboard at large, still need more than Hot Pockets. Some need toilet paper, gas or water. Some are still without electricity. But after an impossibly rough couple of weeks, sometimes it’s nice to not only know that an elected official is actually listening to and communicating with his constituents, but also to have just a totally weird chain reaction of events that will hopefully make someone, somewhere smile. And get a free Hot Pocket. In the meantime, you can help residents with the essentials via these wish lists created by Occupy Sandy, Matthew Titone and more. BlackBook and VIBE Media also have a Hurricane Sandy relief fund, which you can contribute to here

Snoop Dogg Becomes Snoop Lion Becomes Snoop Hot Pocket Spokesman

It’s easy to imagine the scenario that led to this new advertisement featuring Snoop Dogg/Lion hawking Hot Pockets. It probably happened in a big, fancy conference room in a top ad agency, with lots of poring over notes and PowerPoints and Klout scores and drinking lots of coffee, possibly with whiskey in it (because all of your understanding of how ad agencies work comes from Mad Men). How to make Hot Pockets seem hip and sexy for the younger demographic? The hapless just-moved-to the-big-city Intern is not paying attention, instead mindlessly scribbling “Pocket Like It’s Hot, Pocket Like It’s Hot” on her notepad. The Account Executive sitting next to her snaps up the idea like it’s the last bacon-wrapped shrimp at a casino buffet, and an ad campaign is born. No one seems to notice that this is a song from 2004.

This may not be exactly how it happened, but nevertheless, somehow it never crossed the mind of anyone in advertising to use Snoop Dogg’s “Drop It Like It’s Hot” in a Hot Pockets commercial before. So here were are, complete with a music video with guest appearances from Andy Milonakis and DeStorm, as well as a blinged-out incarnation of mascot Herbie Hot Pocket. As Snoop watches the microwave while rapping about what to do when “your munchies get a attitude,” Herbie chills in the hot tub and at one point, DeStorm makes it rain with pepperoni slices. This is the stuff of which Clio awards are made.