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The Sh*t People Say meme is a perfect illustration of what the AV Club’s Nathan Rabin calls the Sideshow Bob Rake Rule: first it’s kind of funny, then a little less funny, then excruciatingly unfunny … and then it miraculously becomes funny again through the weird power of repetition and predictability.
Maybe that’s why BuzzFeed created Has Anyone Said This Sh*t, a website that lets users browse through virtually every “Sh*t” video ever made. Just type a word, or even a two-letter combination, and the site will suggest possible “Sh*t People Say” videos that fit your needs.
Granted, the overwhelming majority of them are pretty much the worst. But the entertainment value doesn’t lie in making us think, “Oh man, that’s TOTALLY the sh*t my towel says!” It’s more about the surreal discovery that “Sh*t My Towel Says” actually exists.
While there are plenty of terrible things to say about this meme, there’s something oddly illuminating about sitting through one “Sh*t People Say” video after another.
It’s like watching the entire spectrum of homemade Internet video unfold before you: Some are pretty clever (“Shit Nobody Says”); some are painfully specific and self-absorbed (“Sh*t Mom Blogger Husbands Say”); others have that ineffable WTF quality of late-night cable access programming (“Sh*t Cool Dogs Say”).
But none of them quite captures the driving force behind the meme that refuses to die like “Sh*t People Who Make Sh*t People Say Videos”:
David Holmes is a technology and politics reporter. His work has appeared in Fast Company, the Guardian, the Daily Beast, and Stereogum. In 2011, he wrote the acclaimed "The Fracking Song (My Water's on Fire Tonight) based on ProPublica's investigation on hydraulic fractured gas drilling.