A brief history of flash mobs: they originated in the early 2000s, when people started using the Internet's early social networking tools (like Yahoo groups. Remember those? Remember Yahoo?) to arrange for people to "spontaneously" congregate at a public location at a specific time, engage in some strange, synchronized activity together, then suddenly disperse. One of the earliest publicized examples of a flash mob was a 2003 one at a co-op in Harvard Square, where hundreds of people descended on the store claiming to be shopping for a greeting card for "Bill." Larger scale flash mobs then began to arise, like ones by the group Improv Everywhere, whose stunts include getting more than 200 people to "freeze" in place at New York's Grand Central Station.
After a lull in popularity, a 2010 YouTube clip of a massive dance number to "Do Re Mi" from The Sound of Music in a Belgium train station started the Dance Flash Mob trend (as far as YouTube fads go, it's the pre-lip dub). And, just like with your favorite book, once Oprah endorses it, it's officially The New Thing: on the first show of her talk show's final season, audience members of an outdoor Black Eyed Peas concert suddenly erupted into a choreographed dance during the song "I Gotta Feeling". (I should note that in posting a link to that video, I am in no way endorsing that song or that band.)
Now fried chicken purveyor Popeyes is jumping on the bandwagon by hosting a dance flash mob of their own tomorrow (Saturday) at 2 p.m. (check-in starts at 1 p.m.) on the 300 block of Bourbon Street, between Conti and Bienville Streets, to promote their new "Louisiana Leaux" menu. The song they chose is — of course, because it'll never die — "Halftime (Stand Up and Get Crunk)" and if you wanna learn the moves and participate, watch the video below. I would not recommend eating any of Popeyes menu items before doing the dance.