Comedic filmmaker Kevin Smith, known for movies such as Clerks, Mallrats, and Jersey Girl, is also known for his love of Veggie Grill, the West Coast vegetarian fast-food chain. On Monday — on his way to O’Hare International Airport for a 95-minute layover — he felt a craving. Before taking off from St. Louis, Smith sent out a bat signal via Twitter to his fans asking if any of them would deliver Veggie Grill food to him at the airport. He offered them $200 for the drop off, equating it to finding a wheelman like in Burt Reynolds’ 1977 film Smokey and the Bandit.
Flying back to Vancouver from St Louis in the a.m. I have 95 minute layover in Chicago - where there is a @VeggieGrill by The Loop. Do I risk missing my flight and try to make it from @fly2ohare to #VeggieGrill before my next flight or is that nuts? Thoughts from any Chicagoans?— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) October 15, 2018
After several tweets and social media drama that hooked several of his followers, Smith found a fan willing to order the food and drive the goods from the Loop down the Kennedy Expressway to ORD. He ended up paying $200 for $48.05 worth of Veggie Grill food. Smith had taken off from St. Louis and didn’t have Wi-Fi while in the air, so the fan didn’t know what the filmmaker wanted to order. He guessed Smith’s favorite items based on Internet research. The fan ordered vegan Buffalo wings, a Nashville hot Chickn’ sandwich, crispy cauliflower, tempura green beans, and a Beyond Burger.
Im short on time so i did some internet research and got him this pic.twitter.com/Uaswl6mkg9— Alex Fucking Smith (@Im_Alex_Smith) October 15, 2018
The commute down the Kennedy is brutal, and fans advised him that leaving the airport wouldn’t be a smart move. Smith, who made fun of his prior weight in the films he’s appeared in, has decreased meat and dairy intake after he suffered at heart attack earlier this year. In the process, he’s lost weight and become a fan of Veggie Grill’s options.
The delivery man — named Alex Smith (no relation) — appears to be a superfan. He was wearing a Mooby’s shirt. That’s the fictional fast-food restaurant that appears in Smith’s movies and comic books. Mooby’s serves burgers and features a kid-friendly cow as a mascot in a dark twist.
“Happy endings, man,” Smith said in a video posted from O’Hare on Twitter. “This is what a hero looks like, not all heroes wear capes, some of them wear Mooby’s smocks. Thank you from one Smith to another.”
WE DID IT! @Im_Alex_Smith made the @VeggieGrill Run from The Loop to @fly2ohare in time for me to enjoy a little piece of home right here in Chicago’s airport! Many thanks for being The Bandit, sir! It was an adventurous, delicious layover! pic.twitter.com/JgjjbdQvmz— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) October 15, 2018
Alex Smith posted a video chronicling his journey. He said he didn’t have anything better to do and needed the money. NBC Chicago aired a segment on the journey on Monday. That drew a reply from Kevin Smith: “And I’m sure @VeggieGrill is happy for the free commercial too!” Veggie Grill responded with a thank you.
Ha! That means it’s a s-l-o-w news day - which is never a bad thing! Thanks again, @Im_Alex_Smith, for the fun lunchtime mini-quest! That little taste of home made my flight to Vancouver way better! And I’m sure @VeggieGrill is happy for the free commercial too! https://t.co/9nsRY7M81q— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) October 16, 2018