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Why everyone is saying it’s ‘Just hay fever’ on TikTok

'The Story of Tracy Beaker' and a creepy new effect collide on TikTok.

 

Audra Schroeder

Internet Culture

Posted on Feb 4, 2022   Updated on Feb 7, 2022, 1:59 pm CST

That One Sound is a weekly column from senior internet culture writer Audra Schroeder that explores the origin of popular sounds heard on TikTok. Suggestions? Tips? Email audra@dailydot.com.

This week’s sound has the distinction of circulating along with a new TikTok effect, “Crying Eyes,” which is a bit discomfiting when you happen upon it at 2am, but it’s actually an appropriate filter for the dead of winter in the third year of a pandemic. 

Here’s why everyone on TikTok is saying it’s “Just hay fever.” 

The sound

The sound, which started going viral in January, features audio of a boy asking, “What’s the matter?” A girl responds, “Just hay fever.” The Crying Eyes effect, which debuted in early January, reinforces that statement, though it does make most people (and animals) look like aliens. 

According to the original poster, uglinablin, the audio has been on TikTok for two years but is only now going viral.

The sound was applied to traumatic events, like finding out your dad’s cheating on your mom after reading his Facebook messages in 2013, as well as more mundane events, like getting stoned at work because you hate your job. It’s also been used quite a bit since Euphoria season 2 came out.

https://www.tiktok.com/@kykynicolee/video/7054661890710048046

Where’s it from?

The sound is from early aughts BBC show The Story of Tracy Beaker, adapted from Jacqueline Wilson’s book of the same name. The titular character, a mischievous 10-year-old girl, resides in a children’s home and the series ran from 2002-2006. But it’s still quite popular today: Spinoff My Mum Tracy Beaker, which saw Dani Harmer reprise her role, debuted last year. Quite a few commenters on other TikToks about the sound thought it was from the Harry Potter movies.

Tracy crying but blaming it on her hay fever is a recurring theme in the series, as illustrated in this YouTube compilation.

Sound off

The sound has been used in more than 195,000 TikToks since the start of the year. The young Tesco worker who first uploaded it in April 2020 got in on the trend last month, illustrating the irony: “when your sound blows up on tiktok two years after you posted it and you’re STILL working in tesco.” 

@uglinablin

Done pretending it’s just hayfever #justhayfever

♬ original sound – uglinablin
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*First Published: Feb 4, 2022, 8:00 am CST