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Kill them. Kill them with fire.
We love the Internet. Except when we hate it. Every week, Jordan Valinsky bottles the angst of his Millennial generation and finds something to despise about the Web.
You know how a nicely aged wine is the backbone to any good reality show starring middle aged woman grasping for any attention they can get? Well, that’s what memes are to the Internet.
Like wine, memes are a sweet diversion to distract you from the real problems in your life. Instead of writing this (sometimes decent?) column, I’d rather set my homepage to KnowYourMeme and gaze stupidly at it while emitting a low-pitched grunt of approval (which, incidentally, is the same way I watch Revenge).
Too much wine can be a bad thing, however. The slurring words, the headache, and, sometimes, that disgusting morning after breath that smells like you tried cleaning your Birkenstocks with your tongue.
Maybe it’s just me but memes can have the same effect.
If you’re a non-drinker, the most sober way of describing this feeling is when your friend sent you a “Shit [somebody] Says” video three weeks after it stopped being funny and you couldn’t handle it anymore.
So, here are three memes that need to be bottled up and thrown into the non-recyclable trash bin to never return.
“Call Me Maybe” covers
Justin Bieber diabolically started this trend when he kidnapped everyone from the Disney channel and recorded himself dancing around in some empty McMansion to Carly Rae Jepsen’s breakout hit. The world’s greatest summer pop song quickly, and deservedly, climbed to number one on the charts around the world thanks to that.
Then everyone starting making their own covers, especially bros. It reached its apex when NBC’s Today show invited the Harvard baseball team and Southern Methodist University’s rowing team to uh, compete with dueling van-set versions. I know Today has 18 hours to fill, which mostly consists of baking low-calorie cakes and Al Roker not shutting up, but this was just awkward to watch. Also, I get it, people with webcams: You can dance and lip-sync to simplistic lyrics that should be imprinted on an Aeropostale t-shirt. Congrats.
Let’s all get it out of our system, watch this supercut of “Call Me Maybe” covers that Popdust created and never call back.
Celebrities reading Fifty Shades of Grey
This is going to be the next big meme that will fill your Facebook news feed. Your friends (who are secretly reading this late-night Cinemax-inspired novel but are too embarrassed to admit it because they probably go to church or have a sense of shame), will soon be posting these YouTube clips with the smart explanation: “lol so funny!!”
Gilbert Gottfried started this trend because his ear-aching voice and that trashy prose makes for some good click-bait.
Now Kristen Stewart, Charlize Theron, and Ellen Degeneres have all proven they are literate at a seventh grade level and recorded a video of themselves doing so. Can someone find out what Betty White’s fees are? I’d like to record her reading the line “His thumb presses on my tongue and my mouth closes around him, sucking wildly,” and just get this over with.
Reaction GIF Tumblrs
I hate these because they freeze my Tumblr dashboard eighty percent of the time. We need to cool it. It began with the #WhatShouldWeCallMe blog. The original blog to use animated GIFs to represent common emotions was actually funny. Haha, you’re right Tumblr blog, I am just like Snooki and roll my eyes when I see something that annoys me, like a long Starbucks line. My life is so tough that a GIF perfectly encapsulates my complex feelings.
Its Tumblr spawn are another matter entirely, however. We’ve now got reaction GIF blogs for colleges, cities and careers. Everyone just began regurgitating the same GIFs we saw last month, slapping on some half-relatable sentence on top in an attempt to be clever.
This GIF of George Michael moping around is how I feel but I’m not going to make a blog about it.
Photo via NBC
A former editorial operations specialist and staff writer for the Daily Dot, Jordan Valinsky is a tech reporter and web culture commentator. His work has been published by the Week, Digiday, CNNMoney, Popular Mechanics, Vice, Mic, and Betabeat.