Local musician and media-relations manager David Moye calls himself an “insensitive singer-songwriter.” Moye, 44, has worked as a reporter and an editor at the WirelessFlash, a San Diego news agency. Moye says that recent coverage of Colorado’s balloon boy, six-year-old Falcon Heene, who was originally said to have been trapped inside a homemade helium balloon that allegedly accidentally went airborne (the boy was later found hiding in the family garage) brought back memories of Richard Heene, the boy’s controversial father.
“I gave him the title ‘the Bob Vila of Cardboard Boxes,’ ” Moye says.
“I first interviewed Heene by telephone for the WirelessFlash in 2001. He called me up about a video he had made called Box Time, which was a video about how to make playhouses out of boxes. It was a kid’s video. But I thought, let’s make this wackier. I asked Heene if it was possible to make homes out of cardboard boxes for homeless people. And he was, like, smelling an opportunity. ‘Oh, yeah, yeah,’ he said. ‘These things can withstand 20-mile-an-hour winds.’ ”
Moye says that in the years to come he would write another four or five stories about Heene for WirelessFlash. “He talked really fast. I’d have to slow him down.
“We did a story about Heene trying to get people to send in their tornado photos to somehow help science determine when tornados start. Heene talked about how he took his kids to tornados, literally drove into the tornado. For the weird-news world, he was a great combination of a crackpot who loved publicity.”
Moye says he contacted Heene again after Hurricane Katrina for another story. “We said, ‘Hey, we know you did this [Box Time video] for children, but do you think all those displaced homeless people who don’t want to live in Houston might benefit from, say, Target donating a bunch of used refrigerator boxes?’ He was all over it like a cheap suit.” Moye says Heene made a second Box Time video showing how discarded refrigerator boxes could be reinforced with duct tape, latex paint, and shingles.
“What fascinates me is that the box theme keeps coming back. He asked reporters to put questions in a cardboard box. His kid was hiding in a box. Why is Heene so obsessed with boxes?”
Moye will perform his insensitive songs at the open mike Sunday, November 1, at Java Joe’s in Cafe Libertalia.