Shit X Says: The State of a Meme at the End of Its Life (Hopefully)
It all began on December 12, 2011.
That’s when “Shit Girls Say” was uploaded to YouTube and nearly broke the Internet when it was picked up by Reddit, the Huffington Post, and pretty much every other website, too. A month and a half later, it’s racked up over 12 million views. “Shit Girls Say” began as a Twitter account created by Kyle Humphrey and Graydon Sheppard, before they, along with some help from Juliette Lewis, put together the 79-second video that almost instantly “changed” the Internet, for better or worse (worse). Ever since, hundreds of parodies have popped up online, ranging from the inevitable “Shit Black Girls Say” to the far more out there “Shit Premature Ejaculators Say.” And somewhere in-between, we’ve got “Shit Lana Del Rey Says.”
Unless it’s Rebecca Black-related, memes are meant to live and die in a very short amount of time. As soon as Tebowing became a thing, it was time to move onto something else, like Cam-Newtoning (you just didn’t hear about it), and everyone who was still Tebowing was, as the assholes from that AT&T commercial would say, “SOOOO FOUR SECONDS AGO.” But people are still making Shit X Say videos, with dozens more uploaded to YouTube every day. What does a meme look like nearly 50 days after it began? Well:
“Shit Scary Snakes Say,” January 25, 2012
1) I have no clue if this video is ironic or not.
2) Is that “Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye” being played on the keyboard?
3) If you’re wondering, “Shit Cats Say” was uploaded on January 6.
“Shit ’90s Kids Say,” January 22, 2012
Whenever there’s an online trend, it’s only a matter of time before the ’90s gets involved. It’s an instant nostalgia connection for everyone roughly between the ages of 22-30, and it’s also one of the easiest gimmicks in the book. Say you’re talking to someone who’s 62 years old about the Velvet Underground — how many times in your life have you heard them at one point jokingly, but snidely say, “How do you even know about the Velvet Underground? That’s my generation.” Ever since, oh, the Internet became a thing, generational divides stopped meaning anything — someone who’s in their 20s can know just as much about I Love Lucy as someone who watched the show when it was on TV. ANYWAYS.
“Shit People Who Make “Shit People Say” Videos Say,” January 18, 2012
Meta. Bound to happen.
“Shit Bassoonists Say,” January 25, 2012
All the good instruments have already been taken (Shit Drummers Say, January 16; Shit Violinists Say, January 17; Shit Metal Guitar Players Say, January 24, etc.), so it’s time for the bassoonists to shine. No one’s done Shit Glockenspiel Players Say, though, so the instrument-based subgenre of the meme isn’t dead yet.
“Shit People Say to Tattooed People,” January 18, 2012
There are some who latch onto the meme, but don’t fully get the concept. The intended formula is: “Shit _____ Say,” not, “Shit ____ Say to _______.” With just a slight rewording, it changes the premise entirely, from being about what a certain gender, race, sexual orientation, TV show fan, etc. says to being about what an outside individual says to a certain gender, race, sexual orientation, TV show fan, etc.
“Shit Samuel L. Jackson Says,” January 25, 2012
Jay Pharoah wishes he had thought of this first.
“Shit Jamaicans Say in Drive-Thru,” January 18, 2012
Most of the “good” shit-saying situations have been taken, so the premises have become more specific. You can’t just be observing what Jamaicans say; you have to analyze what Jamaicans say in the drive-thru. While many of the videos can be understood, at least slightly, by anyone, this is an example of a situation that only a tiny fraction of the online community can laugh and nod at. Specifically, Jamaicans who have used a drive-thru.
“Shit Black Grandmas Say,” January 21, 2012
Think Madea, with a slightly bigger budget.
“Shit Supernatural Fans Say,” January 22, 2012
This is the fourth “Supernatural Fans Say” video, and the meme has really only been applied to sci-fi or fantasy series. For instance, there’s a “Shit Sherlock Fans Say,” but no “Shit Simpsons/Seinfeld Fans Say” videos. Once you start burrowing down the pop culture rabbit hole, though, it’s only a matter of time before you reach the recently-uploaded Parks and Recreation scene from “Hunting Trip” with Leslie Knope essentially doing “Shit Men Think Girls Say.” That was two years ago.
“Shit Seattle People Say When It Snows Part 3,” January 19, 2012
PART THREE. Shit X Says: December 12, 2011-January 19, 2012
Shit Josh Kurps Say