You might already be familiar with Wednesday memes, celebrating that most pivotal day of the workweek. But there’s a whole class of memes devoted to a silly-yet-apropos nickname for Wednesday: Hump day memes.
First, we have to get into a bit of history about what hump day is and how an insurance commercial with a talking camel signal boosted the phrase. Then, we’ll dive into some hump day memes.
Why is Wednesday called ‘hump day?’
Hump day as a substitute for Wednesday dates back to at least the 1950s, according to the Economic Times. That publication reasoned, “The phrase ‘Hump day’ represents the concept of a week as a metaphorical hill that a person climbs, with Wednesday typically considered as the middle or peak of the week.”
It also went on to note people in Sweden call Wednesday “lillördag,” translating to “Little Saturday.”
In 2013, a notable Geico commercial featuring a talking camel walking through an office helped further popularize the “hump day” term among Americans.
In a CBS News interview with the commmercial’s creators, Wade Alger (overseeing the Geico account for the Martin Group, admitted that the creators were torn on a salient point. He said, “There was a huge debate, is it happier than a camel on Wednesday or is it happier than a camel on hump day?”
Abbey Klaassen, editor for the marketing and media publication Advertising Age, said for the article, “You know, it is unusual to get an ad that has this kind of staying power,” noting its 13 million YouTube views at the time of publication, as well as making it onto the White House’s Twitter account with then-Vice President Joe Biden.
Guess what day it is… pic.twitter.com/YG8o5fIN4m— White House Archived (@ObamaWhiteHouse) August 14, 2013
That article noted that the ad “is likely to end up as the most-watched commercial of the year. It was also the most shared ad all summer.”
So, what about hump day memes?
While some Wednesday memes draw from the famed Mean Girls line, “On Wednesdays, we were pink,” a number of hump day memes rely on camels for the double meaning that Geico cultivated, including one that features another famed advertising: Camel Cigarette’s unsettling Joe Camel.
Others out there take a still from the classic Geico commercial, while some just appropriate stock images of camels to communicate the hump idea.
The Work and Money site selected several hump day-adjacent memes for what it pegged “funny Wednesday memes. One took the Batman slapping Robin meme to cut off an attempted utterance of “hump day.”
Additionally, it took a familiar Yodaspeak meme template to have the Star Wars character bring the camel into things.
Beware when you’re searching “hump day” online, however: Some tweets, like this one from The Book Bunny, use the day of the week to build upon another meaning for “hump”—as notably purposed by the Black Eyed Peas in their 2005 hit song. (A Slate writer, by the way, panned the song as “a stunning assemblage of awful ideas” and “enough to convince one to never, ever ogle again.”)
Hump day 🐪 pic.twitter.com/W3Rlf7nWGQ— 🐰The Book Bunny (@bunnnyjuice) November 22, 2023
And yet, some still carry on this convergence of what “hump” communicates. Especially on Wednesdays.