Friday, October 16, 2020

I Like Your Melon G
Inktober 2020 Day 10

The “I Like Ya Cut G” meme is one more bit of evidence that I will never really understand or truly appreciate the internet that our kids inhabit. 

Like many such memes, I first heard the phrase, delivered by one son to the other, as he whacked him hard on the back of the head. reports that the first video dates back to 2018 and featured a man delivering the soon to become catchphrase to a bald child before slapping him on the back of the head. 

This spawned a thousand iterations, often with some sort of sound, like a shriek, or strangely, the Taco Bell noise (let’s just skip that) following the slap. 

Have read the etiology of this meme, I still basically fail to understand its appeal. Yes, hitting people on the head is always funny to some, but still...why all of the iterations of this one. Surely there are other excuses for swatting people and objects?

I did find something appealing about the dolphin version of the meme. (Though of course, it is not a dolphin, it’s a Beluga whale.)

Wikipedia informs me that a Beluga whale “possesses a distinctive protuberance at the front of its head which houses an echolocation organ called the melon which in this species is large and deformable”

In other videos, Belugas seem receptive to having their melons “deformed” by a friendly human hand, so this does seem to be contrary to the basic antagonistic nature of the “I like ya cut G” meme. But maybe I like my memes less antagonist.

And maybe I just wanted to draw a Beluga. 


Another Bad Drawing of Something You Shouldn’t Laugh At

Inktober 2020 Day 9

Our older son really enjoyed showing me a video of a man bouncing an infant on a yoga ball until the ball suddenly explodes- apparently just at the moment that he does not have a firm grip on the baby. The baby drops behind the activity box on the floor, completely disappearing as if swallowed by the floor.

My son pointed out that I seemed compelled to make the same startled noise as the baby dropped every time I watched the matter how many times I had seen it already. 

Usually the enjoyment of watching other people wipe out on youtube does not extend to infant injury, but somehow the performance of dubious parenting here makes this weirdly compelling viewing. (The initial bouncing is a maybe a little ill advised for a baby too young for  head and neck control, and then perhaps startled, the guy actually stands up as the baby falls rather than trying to stop the descent)

Luckily our kids survived their infancy, and now my bad parenting manifests in allowing them to watch baby dropping memes.

That’s Not Michael Either

Inktober 2020 Day 8

Our kids have always enjoyed a nice creepy image or a scary story. 

In their younger years, the resulting exposure to scary stuff might have made it difficult to, say, go to the kitchen to get a glass of water when the lights were out. One never knows what horrors might lurk in one’s own domicile. 

I have tried explaining that we are too far boring for Abominations to take an interest in. And hiding in dark corners waiting for a teenager to leave his room to go to the bathroom...that’s really dull stuff. Monsters have more interesting places to be.

But the very brief video clip known as “That’s Not Michael” definitely puts an amusing spin on the casual dismissal of horrors lurking in domestic spaces. The carrier of the video phone is walking around a cluttered basement looking for Michael. He looks down a dark hallway to see a very ominous, tall, naked figure squatting at the end, which turns to look over its shoulder at him with green glowing eyes. The narrator/ cameraman, comments dispassionately, “that’s not Michael” and moves on.

The figure at the end of the hall is mostly in shadow and mostly suggested, other than its glowing eyes.

It only took a couple of  google searches to come up with the author of the video, Zulubo Productions, and the “how to make a cursed video” / making of “that’s not Michael” video, which shows the very literal animated figure that he posed and placed at the end of the hall.

My son says that kind of spoiled his enjoyment of the video.  That plus a bad drawing, and my work for tonight is done.

It’s Fun Until Someone Loses An Eye- then it lives forever on YouTube?

Inktober 2020 Day 7

Ah, the endless joy of watching short video clips of other people getting hurt. And it’s even better when there is a compilation of multiple clips.  And then add some snappy music.

The “Wii Sports Resort” meme checks all these boxes and additionally provides perverse nostalgia for our formerly Wii Sports Resort playing kids.  The video is a series of unrelated clips, each representing one of the sports options off the main menu: basketball, bowling, boating, etc., and of course, archery.

Each clip features accidental or intentional injury- one ping pong player throws the paddle across the table at the other. One guy in a basketball one-on-one just plain decks the other guy, a man drives a boat full speed into a post.

It is both mildly funny and seriously disturbing, as the clips range from harmless stumbles to possible fatalities. 

But the clip  in which a bow tie wearing kid, who has obviously set up his phone on the floor to record himself shooting his cool nerf bow and arrow, only to have the arrow immediately bounce back to hit him in the eye, is memorable. 

I am really hoping that the clip would not have made its way to YouTube if, in fact, an eye had been lost (or damaged)

Everybody Gangsta ‘Til Rodents Who Are Probably Not Beavers Start Pushing One Another

Inktober 2020 Day 6

This one is known as “everyone gangsta ‘til the beavers pull up” and is, of course, popular with many people, including our kids.

The “Everybody Gangsta Until...” meme started back in 2015 with ...”until the cockroach flies” and has proliferated into a thousand iterations from “until your mom catches you rioting” to “til the pelican pull up at the store” 

The supposed beavers here were my first exposure to this meme. How on earth had I missed it for the last five years? 

They are standing on their hind legs and awkwardly and ineffectually shoving one another. (It’s not unlike Spider-Man fighting Jesus) There seem to be two sizes of the creatures, and the smaller ones keep trying to get in the middle of things. This is, for some reason, funny.

But I just have to point out: they are clearly not beavers. Maybe something like a groundhog? Which I learned this evening, is the same animal as a woodchuck and is sometimes know as a “whistle pig” or a “land beaver” (“Whistlepig Day?”)

I have learned so much today.

Though these pushy critters don’t really look like groundhogs....But definitely not beavers. The tails are wrong. 


Everybody Gangsta Til the Pedantic Old Lady Shows Up to the Meme Party.

Super Villain Seagull


Inktober 2020 day 5:

Sometimes all you really need is a video clip of a seagull laughing like a supervillain. 

Many have documented on YouTube the disturbingly evocative cries of gulls. But one in particular posted by  YouTuber Dimaniztlt back in 2012 features the gull throwing its head back with the malevolent flair of a Joker.

Know Your Meme reports that by 2017 the clip had over 181,000 views. It has proliferated and moved far beyond that since- and morphed into the “Seagull Inhaling” meme with a glowing red eye.

But I thought the upside down eye here was persuasive enough. 

I’ve Been A Fool


Inktober 2020 Day 4:

Our older son loves a video posted by @yeehawwsadcat of a teary-eyed cat, singing a Japanese ballad through the courtesy of creepy face morphing. 

The human lips....truly nightmare fuel.

Our younger son explains that is an example of a “cursed image.” One might briefly think this terminology originated with my own clever child...well, one might think that if one is close to my advanced age perhaps. But I have learned to think twice. I googled, and discovered on Wikipedia: “ a cursed image refers to images that are perceived as mysterious or disturbing due to their content, poor quality, or a combinations of the two. Since 2016, such images have become popular online.”

This one brings together two memes, that are each their own deep rabbit holes (or entire warrens): “Crying Cat” and “Baka Mitai”

According to Know Your Meme, the earliest know usage of the Crying Cat image was in 2014, which oddly, was a photoshopped version of Serious Cat.

It proliferated on a German image board in 2015, known there as “Schmuserkadser,” before moving to 4chan in 2016. 

Baka Mitai (I’ve Been a Fool) is a karaoke song that appears in the Yakusa series of games for the PlayStation. Baka Mitai, also known as “Dame Da Ne” for the first line of the lyrics, is a widespread meme of its own, sung by various game characters and real people. In 2020, Deepfake technology allowed many more people and characters ranging from Super Mario to Obama to sing the song without their participation in the real world.  The face morph template was apparently provided by Youtuber shaggySuave. 

No question, the queasy distortion generated by the low quality morphing is part of the charm.... if charm is the word we need here.

The Joy of Shrieking

Inktober 2020 Day 3

Continuing onward with our hapless Inktober series of bad drawings of the short videos that my sons like to show me....repeatedly.

Struggling to characterize these videos, I asked my younger son for a description and he offered, “stupid funny shit which makes me laugh.”

Tonight’s bad drawing is based on a TikTok by @gideon_mcmanus titled “pov: you used the band kid’s instrument.” Mr McManus portrays a band kid who exclaims in horror about someone using his alto sax: “You wettened my reed!!” The clip ends in a startling high pitched shriek.

I would like to add something insightful about this video, but words fail me. Suffice it to say that it is more compelling than my drawing.


Spider-Man vs. Jesus

(A post from October 2nd)

Inktober 2020, Day 2

This one is not hard to find on YouTube, though the title does vary a bit: “Spider-man Fights Jesus to Bring Mr Starks Back” or “ Bring Stan Lee Back To Life,” etc. Linkin Park’s 2002 hit, “In the End” plays for the entire clip. The combatants appear to be at some sort of party, though the video quality is extremely low, which is, I suppose, part of its charm. It did present more of a drawing challenge than I might have hoped.

There’s no hitting going on, Spider-Man and Jesus are mostly grabbing and stumbling around in a hapless manner. They do appear to be evenly matched. Spider-Man sports a baseball cap and track pants, both of which are in danger of removal throughout.

Our son agrees with the comment posted on one of the videos that “this is lowkey brilliant.” Another comment suggests that this video sums up the entire internet.

I’m not sure, 

But in the end 

It doesn’t even matter.

Sweet Dreams Bears


(A post from October 1st)

Inktober 2020, Day #1:

Inktober presents an opportunity for bad drawing on a deadline once again...and not even on a napkin!

I’ve tried to keep up with the one ink drawing a night mandate of inktober for the last 4 years, much to the distaste of everyone in my immediate environment, and any remaining followers here. I’ve managed to limp through most of the month in years past, but I have to admit, given the competing demands on my time right now, the prospects are pretty grim this year.

But sadly, I haven’t given up yet.

Sometimes I just need to make some crappy drawings with the excuse of an artificial deadline. 

In previous years I have exploited my kids and made drawings about my weird health and sleep fixations. I hatched several plans over the last few weeks, but finally decided today that it should be more in the original spirit of the napkins- though, yes, this is a watercolor.

So I am drawing from the memes and videos that our sons are always trying to get me to watch.

This one is an older video, still on YouTube at close to 3 million views...though the 10 hour version has a mere 1.8 million views. The bears flop around endless to the Eurythmics’ “Sweet Dreams.” It’s oddly compelling even to those resistant to the charms of idiotic videos.

I haven’t done it justice at all. 

National Son Day

(This one was supposed to have been posted back on September 28th)

I’ve been considering exploiting my all suffering male offspring as source material for the upcoming #inktober, but well, I am sensitive to over handling them, so to speak...and to putting their faces out too much online as recognizable images. 

But here is a trial run, nonetheless.

My son tells me that it is recognizable as him. 

I am distracted by the drawing disaster and cannot really engage with the likeness issue.  But it’s not really looking like a solution to my inktober problem.