Tube Dude before he was stolen from Mike Corcoran’s property in the Topsail Pond area. — Submitted photo
There have been a number of leads, but the whereabouts of Tube Dude remains a mystery.
The story of seven-foot-tall aluminum man, which was a neighbourhood hit at the end of Mike Corcoran’s driveway in the Topsail Pond area, was told in The Telegram in early June.
It would have required considerable effort to kidnap the impressive figure that Corcoran had bolted down and welded to poured concrete (somebody tried to nab him before, to no avail). Tube Dude seemed to bring joy to the people who saw him.
“The first time you see it, you look at it and laugh and you wonder, ‘What is it?’ And then the next time you see it you can’t help but smile,” Corcoran told The Telegram in June.
Now, Corcoran is marvelling at how much attention his ads to help locate the missing mascot have garnered. He has ads on both Kijiji and Newfoundland and Labrador Classifieds and he says he’s received upwards of 40 emails and several phone calls.
“Mostly from people wishing him well,” he says.
There have also been a few sightings — one in Corcoran’s hometown of St. Mary’s and another in Mount Pearl. Alas, they were just imposters — homemade versions people had crafted on their own. Corcoran was sent a picture of the one in St. Mary’s.
“From a distance it looked possible, but when I zoned in on it I could tell,” he says.
His wife and daughters went to check out the sighting in Mount Pearl.
“Like little detectives,” says Corcoran. “They were excited to go visit the one that they did go check out.”
He adds that his two daughters are always anxious to know if he’s been returned or if there have been any updates, but the one in Mount Pearl was also a domestic version.
So far, there have just been false sightings. Corcoran’s Tube Dude came from Sarasota, Fla., and cost more than $1,500. The homemade ones just don’t compare, he says.
“They’re not the same quality.”
But the eyes that are peeled for Tube Dude aren’t just confined to the borders of this province. Corcoran also got a message from a woman from Nova Scotia who saw Tube Dude while on a trip here and is now keeping an eye out for him in her province.
Corcoran says that after all this time it would be easy to give up, but drawing on some of the optimism Tube Dude seems to have in his smile and wave, Corcoran is holding out hope.
“I’ll never give up.”
He plans to keep refreshing the ads he has up and keep the social media on the search for Tube Dude growing. His hope is that the person who has the metal man might then realize they’ll never be able to put Tube Dude up without getting caught.
“Maybe some morning I’ll wake up and he’ll be after dropping it off without me even knowing it,” says Corcoran.