Monday, February 24, 2014

Keep calm and kill this meme

Is there a worse Internet meme than "Keep Calm and ..."?

Of course there are. Racist ones. Also, overdone and unfunny ones in general. But at least when you're reading those, you think, "That's worthless and/or inflammatory, but there is a meaning here that can be ascertained."

Not so with the "Keep Calm" meme. Its main purpose as a meme seems to be to say, "I'm aware that this thing exists." This thing referring to this:


Unlike many others who object, I'm not bothered by this poster's serious history as an alternate-universe reassurance for Nazi-occupied London. No, it's just that it's nearly impossible to make its copycat meme clever or even coherent, much less funny.

Some prime examples include:

• Et cetera

What, exactly, does keeping calm have to do with any of those things?

• "Gee, I'd love to love horses, but I'm way too uptight!"
• "You should really mellow out before hitting that bike trail."
• "Now, now, let's all take it easy before One Direction takes the stage. You should be quiet and respectful so you can hear them."
"The No. 1 thing to remember when twerking is to be really tranquil about it."
• "[Too hipster to even be hypothetical about]"
• OK, I get this one.
• Et cetera

Even when the meme occasionally works, it's because you can slice off "Keep Calm and..." and the statement will be exactly the same. So, really, it never works.

Indeed, to know how I feel about this meme, just consult this other meme:

And slice off the top half.

1 comment:

Minna said...

It is such a rare occasion to encounter someone who thinks the same way about this abomination. Not that I'm too fond of the whole meme business altogether, but this particular one is only illogical. And oh so friggin annoying.

PS. I can't get over the fact how good-looking you are. :)