Every day before I leave my room to attend class, I make sure I have my phone and my keys. Sometimes I forget my keys, but it’s never the end of the world. When I forget my phone, which is rare, I feel disconnected from the world and worried that I’m missing something important. But when I do have my phone, it burns holes in my pockets and summons me to use it as often as physically possible because it’s hard to escape the constant accessibility we have to social media. We endlessly flip back and forth between twitter, instagram, facebook, tumblr, reddit, etc. whenever we are bored, when we need to find information or just to keep up with our “friends.”
There is a common thread linking these platforms together, aside from them all being parts of media of course. This thread is crucial to popularizing a social platform: memes. A meme is basically “a humorous image, video, piece of text, etc., that is copied (often with slight variations) and spread rapidly by Internet users.” Memes are a social tool that can help you connect with anyone who has even the slightest exposure to that meme. Let me tell you, people LOVE talking about memes! They make people laugh and they are the glue that holds internet users together no matter their race, gender, sexuality, religion, etc.
A wicked popular meme right now is the “what in tarnation” dog variations. This is the original meme:
Then came the variations…
“what in calculation”
“what in stingray migration”
“what in boating violation”
“what in situation”
Okay, you get it. Not a day goes by where I don’t say or hear someone else say, “what in tarnation” with a southern accent or change the meme to fit whatever situation they are in. Memes are a staple in the community of adolescence that tend to frame the way young adults interact with one another. I have fallen victim to these meme shenanigans as well. But this is not just a one time deal- there will always be a new meme creeping around the corner.
A meme that was extremely popular but seems to have died down a bit is the “deadass” meme. Being “deadass” is associated with timberland work boots and New York. It basically means being serious. All of my friends back home always call me deadass or use that word in conversation with me simply because I go to school in New York. Here are a few variations of the deadass memes:
In the midst of writing this blog, I decided to walk around and stretch my legs. I walked into my common room and saw my suite mate’s friend, Tina. This is Tina:Tina is wearing Timberland work boots. Without even thinking, the first thing I said was, “Hey Tina! You’re looking especially deadass today!” That is when I realized that memes actually are a huge part of our culture today and there is no escaping it. It’s like an endless black hole that sucks you in and you think you’re having a great time but then you realize you haven’t gone to class in 3 days and you have a blog due today.