The famed Naked Cowboy of New York City's Times Square is facing down some unexpected competition in the form of The Naked Indian.
Robert John Burck, aka The Naked Cowboy, has been a near-constant presence in Times Square since 1998 when he first showed up carrying an acoustic guitar and wearing only boots, underwear and a cowboy hat.
The 41-year-old street performer has faced off against his share of rivals. He recently settled out of court with Mars, the maker of M&M'S candy, over a copyright infringement allegation. And he has even created a Naked Cowboy franchise system, where he allows other performers to operate under his brand for a fee.
However, Burck has had less luck negotiating with a new player on the scene, The Naked Indian. In an interview with Animal TV, The Naked Indian notes that Burck has threatened to file a lawsuit against him, an action he calls "classless."
"Cowboys been pushing Indians around for long enough," said The Naked Indian, who did not give his legal name. "This Indian won't be pushed around."
The Naked Indian even alluded to scalping his predecessor.
"He will get a haircut and he will smoke the peace pipe," he said.
But how have his Native American peers responded to the act?
"One chief came and he tried to say something but he didn't have a really good argument," he said. "My family doesn't have a problem with it and I'm not doing anything wrong. I'm not doing porn. I'm not doing nude modeling. I'm not doing anything that's distasteful. I'm on Broadway."
However, even if his act isn't illegal, he might be guilty of hubris. When asked how tourists are receiving his street performances, The Naked Indian wasn't bashful. Crazy? Maybe a little. But certainly not bashful.
"I throw peace signs with every photo and that really strengthens international relations, believe it or not, on a subliminal level that's unparalleled, that's unmeasured, it's incomparable," he said.