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Screengrab via Mr. Grande/YouTube

YouTube hero eats a pepper every time Ariana Grande says ‘um’

'If this video doesn't show you how much I love you, I don't know what will.'


Vanna Vasquez


Posted on Jul 21, 2017   Updated on May 22, 2021, 11:07 pm CDT

Gone are the days of showing love for your idol by making a collage of their photos on your wall. Dedication used to mean trying to score tickets to all their concerts, or at least legally buying their album, but with a new generation come new, fire-y extremes.

Mikey Junchaya, a 19-year-old YouTuber, dedicated his love for Ariana Grande by eating a hot pepper every time she said “um” during her American Music Awards acceptance speech last year. Spoiler alert, she said “um” a lot.

The clip, which on Friday became the No. 1 video on Reddit, showed the crabby teen scarfing down the peppers like candy. Well, if candy makes your face look like it’s in pain. The Albuquerque, New Mexico, teen can be seen gagging on the peppers as his eyes water up until he finally spits them out. We’re impressed he ate that many like a champ.

In an interview with BuzzFeed, Junchaya revealed what happened after the camera was turned off.

“After I turned the camera off is when I felt the real pain,” he said. “I thought water would help, but I was pacing back and forth in my kitchen, shoving ice in my mouth with tears coming down my eyes for about 20 minutes straight.”

He should have seen this coming. On his YouTube channel, Mr. Grande, Junchaya put a spotlight on Grande’s love of  the word “um” in a previous Chainsmokers’ parody.

But if it was viral fame he was after, he got plenty of it on Twitter.

He told BuzzFeed he wants the video to show how much he loves Grande.

“If this video doesn’t show you how much I love you, I don’t know what will,” he said. “And I forgive you for destroying my tastebuds!”

Junchaya surely created an imminent social media challenge. But remember, kids: Peppers are not your friend.

H/T BuzzFeed

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*First Published: Jul 21, 2017, 6:04 pm CDT