oh my fucking god

Everyone go home. The internet is over.

Okay, you know what? I just reblogged this but I wanna get geeky over it. ‘Cause this is some high-class humor right here, and if you don’t get that you need to be educated so here I am about to do the thing you’re not supposed to do and explain the joke, because I’m just really impressed by this joke’s construction, okay?

So back in Paris in the 1920s, the surrealist movement in art was just starting to take off. The surrealist movement was born from the dadaist movement, which was a response to strict societal ideas of what was “art” and what wasn’t. The dadaists made a lot of works to try and challenge society’s ideas of what art even was in the first place, and this continued on into the more sophisticated abstract works of surrealism.

One such artist, Rene Magritte (also known for his paintings of people with invisible heads, or with fruit for heads), painted a work called "The Treachery of Images," depicting a pipe, and underneath the words (in french) “This is Not a Pipe.” The words were meant to refer to the fact that the painted pipe was literally not a real physical pipe that a viewer could smoke out of, it was just a painting of a pipe.

The painting was extremely meta, and really challenged the habit of allowing oneself to get so immersed in a work of art that one forgets it is a created representation of life, and not actual life. Understanding that alone takes a good deal of abstract thinking ability. And really appreciating and enjoying it requires a certain amount of one’s own frustration with society’s habit of trying to put limits on the definition of art; and being unable to think outside the box and really see something from all possible perspectives, including the perspective of being completely outside the thing.

Now what’s even more fascinating to me is that modern art movements (and I don’t mean “modern art,” I mean actual contemporary art movements that are being led by our peers) are kinda doing the same thing the dadaist movement was doing, but in reaction to the art that came out of the dadaist movement. Things have circled back around again, and abstract surrealist art is now what society has decided “art” is. And our generation doesn’t accept that. Comics, video games, TV shows and movies, graffiti art, web series, even flash mobs, all of these are our generation’s way of saying, “no, society, you don’t get to define art as strictly as ‘if it doesn’t make sense to me it must be brilliant.’ Art can be simple to understand, art can be accessible to all people, art can make you beg to find out what happens next!” And that’s really interesting to me.

Flash forwards to 2006, when rapper Gucci Mane writes a song called "Pillz" in which the phrase “bitch I might be” was coined and used several times. In the song, it’s used as a sarcastic, somewhat indignant but not wholly angry way to say “it’s none of your business,” in response to a beautiful woman in a club accusing the rapper of being high. The phrase became a meme in 2013, following Gucci Mane’s indictment for assaulting a soldier, when a redditor photoshopped a screencap of news coverage of the trial to reference the song. The photoshopped image changed the previous on-screen text to read “Rapper Gucci Mane responds with ‘bitch I might be’ when asked if guilty”. Again, the usage of the phrase is a sarcastic and indignant “none of your business.” The phrase then quickly gained popularity and was added to numerous other photoshopped images.

Now, memes are really cool as a concept anyways, when you think about them hard enough (I mean, the speed at which an entire world full of young people are able to latch onto something as simple as a phrase that they all mutually find funny, and within a matter of days explore every possible usage and implication of that phrase, including how it might relate to other complex systems of knowledge and understanding such as the rich character and plot developments of stories that generate fandoms), but lets put that aside for now and talk about sarcasm, instead.

Because sarcasm is a very sophisticated, complex, and subtle form of wit. It’s a difficult thing to be able to understand, through tone of voice alone, that what someone says, and what they mean, are two different things. And to be able to discern the actual meaning when the words were not said. As wikipedia says, “different parts of the brain must work together to understand sarcasm.” It’s even harder when those words are typed and not spoken audibly, as the reader must imagine the tone in the first place. That’s a lot of brain work involved in even understanding the true meaning behind that simple little phrase.

And sarcasm is popular right now. More than popular, it’s a hallmark of our generation. People have been writing lengthy articles and psychological, sociological, and anthropological studies and musings on why we’re so sarcastic. As this article suggests, it’s because we’re so angry. We’re a generation that was promised a lot and the world didn’t deliver. We’re disenchanted, and jaded, and mad. And we vent that through sarcastic humor. We laugh at things older generations don’t think are funny. We have come to expect so much disappointment, that we no longer afford “serious” things the respect we’re told they deserve. Because we no longer believe they deserve it. As the article states, “We are a generation that believes nothing is sacred. And if nothing is sacred everything becomes profane.”

One could even go so far as to make the argument that the popularity of the statement on the above image is due partially to the attitude amongst today’s youth (especially on tumblr) that one’s own life and choices are one’s own, and not the business of anybody else. This attitude can be seen in everything as simple as the “be yourself” and “follow your dreams” statements many of us were raised on, to the more serious issues we deal with today of discrimination against the LGBTGA+ community, fat shaming, slut shaming, prejudice against muslim people, etc., to political issues like free speech and government invasion of privacy, and even into more subtle ideas present in social media of privacy settings, controlling who gets to see what posts, block and ignore features, and even the philosophy of “nobody can tell you what to post in your own space. If somebody doesn’t like it, they can unfollow.”

None of this would be happening consciously, of course, but we can’t help but be influenced by the world around us. And a phrase whose meaning is essentially “it’s none of your business” is very likely to resonate strongly with a group of people whose fundamental philosophies of polite interpersonal conduct revolve roughly around the same concept.

Taking all this into consideration, this joke is taking a lot of pre-knowledge and putting it all together to kind of say, in a funny way, “stop acting like you have it all figured out, because you don’t. And some things are just not for you to figure out anyway.”

So to sum up, to understand the above image, you must:

  1. have a descent grasp on art history to recognize the original painting.
  2. have good abstract and/or creative thinking skills to understand and appreciate the original painting.
  3. have a good grasp on modern pop culture, internet culture, and current slang and memes (basically, be an active participant in the wider world).
  4. have the complex emotional and interpersonal understanding necessary to understand the subtleties of sarcasm.
  5. understand enough of what’s going on in the world around you that you are disenchanted enough to appreciate sarcastic humor.
  6. participate in our generation’s general philosophy of life and how to interact with other human beings in the world at large.

So basically, if you laughed, you’re smart. :3


hey everyone look at this big fucking nerd

(via mandelable)

“And actually, in South Korea, there is a train called the cinema train. It’s not the whole train, but one section, they show the movie inside the train from Seoul to Paju. The funny thing is, I was in the cinema train and I saw the movie “The Perks of Being a Wallflower.” And in the beginning of the movie, there’s a subtitle [that said] “This movie has been re-edited for the train’s duration.” So, for the length of the train ride, they cut it down. They should have just found a shorter movie. I was really pissed off. [laughs]”

Interview: Bong Joo Ho

Is it too much to ask to want to watch films with this dude? nope.

(via thehotflash)

They should have multiple routes/courses, adjusted for the length of the film! Longer trips and more rail for longer films.

Or, I suppose they could slow down, too. But multiple choice routes is kookier, so that, please. =)

(via fyeahsnowpiercer)

SNOWPIERCER: Pescatarians only?



Where was the train car where the animals lived? There was a meat locker car, but I don’t think I saw a cow or chicken. So that means that there is no way to sustain the front of the train lifestyle or even the middle. If no one is raising animals, they’d all have to go vegan. Man, I need to break out the Marxist literary theory.

The movie is two hours long, it would have been tedious and useless to see each and every one of the cars…

Given the stores we see in the meat locker car, there’s definitely a livestock car or two. Definitely no free-range here, tho. Would likely have been a factory farm on wheels, right? Chickens jammed into boxes and cattle in pens, stacked on one another. Would’ve been an interesting compare/contrast for the audience: the Tailies and the livestock.

MAYbe a zoo car for the kids, a sort of ark car, preserving some animals for the sake of their species? Crazy talk—maybe as we leave the car, we see a plaque with Gilliam’s name on it? An ark car would be dedicated to the hope of actually leaving the train at some point.

In any case, we don’t get to see the car/s with live animals, for reasons involving running time and perhaps budget, right? I wonder what kind of interactions were or would have been written into such a scene, tho.

Funny that when I think “meat locker,” I think refrigerated, but on the Snowpiercer, it would just be a regular container car, with less insulation/climate control than other cars, if any.

The graphic novels have an interesting and different solution to the protein/meat problem on the train…

*graphic novel detail SPOILER*

Vat-grown meat—Yumm! No animals at all. There’s also a mention of human hair being used for fabric/upholstery.

SNOWPIERCER: More reflections…

More *SPOILER*ful thoughts and crazy talk concerning bits and pieces of the immersive world created in Bong Joon-ho’s SNOWPIERCER…

"Blow it up!"

Saw this animated GIF earlier today…

And immediately thought to myself—Dayumn! That is baddass! That is, like, EdgarWrightian* badass! I mean—”Blow it up!”? That, plus the one-armed crucifix in Gilliam’s quarters, that’s pretty much the end of the movie right there! Will have to keep my eyes open for more prophetic signposts at a next screening—I love this movie more and more!

*Not that Edgar Wright invented foreshadowing in cinema, or whatever you might call it. He (w Simon Pegg) only perfected it is all. =)

How do the matches get into Curtis’s pocket?

I didn’t think of it until after the movie, of course, because it certainly didn’t bother me in the flow of the film and storytelling. But okay, that’s a legit question.

A legit, but probably not very satisfying answer—There is ample time between on-screen events for off-screen activity to account for getting the matchbook from Chan in the tail up to Curtis in the Water Supply section. After the Battle of Yekaterina Bridge, they clean up and sleep in the Water Supply car, so Gilliam, Curtis, or Edgar, realizing that there are going to be more tunnels, could have ordered the matchbook be passed up to the front line.

So, yeah, seriously, lotsa time and opportunity for that to have happened.

But, okay, it would’ve been nice to have seen Grey catch Curtis’s eye, toss them to him, Curtis maybe surprised, and then Yona explaining, “He says there will be more tunnels… He’s right.”

Bent spacetime in “My Dinner with Wilford…?”

If you listen, the conversation in the Engine between Curtis and Wilford flows at a regular pace, but as you watch, the action appears to jump in places. It’s somewhat hidden by cuts to activity in other parts of the train, and maybe cuts to reaction shots in the Engine, but to me it is striking, conspicuous, perhaps meaningful. A little disorienting if you’re paying attention, but I *like* it.

It also speaks to me about a possible psychological side effect of the Engine itself, maybe even a physical (as in physics) one, too. After all, what do we know about the energies involved in a perpetual motion engine, right? Also about Curtis’s state of mind, his exhaustion, and potential susceptibility to Wilford’s words.

One memorable jump… Wilford is at the grill, cooking up his steak, speaking at Curtis. He’s monologuing, and to illustrate a segment of his philosophizing, we get a cut or two to the Kronolheads massing at the narrow bridge, and suddenly (it seems to me), without missing a beat in his speechifying, he’s at the table, eating, opposite Curtis, who now has a full plate in front of him. Of course, he does not touch any of his food… We *never* see him eat. The taste of any meat must be a reminder of the horror of the first month on the Snowpiercer.

Does time flow differently around the works of the Engine? Does the Engine itself/herself (“She’s getting sensitive lately.”), choose and cause time to jump as it/she wishes? A demonstration of power? Or a manifestation of the Engine’s respiration? Could the engine be an entity? A “sensitive” perpetual motion machine. What would such a creature want most? To continue, I should think.

Perhaps the closer you are and the longer you’re exposed to the Engine’s power, the more crazy/Wilford-like you become. The Engine needs an Engineer to maintain it, and the Engineer needs everything and everyone in its place to do that. The Engine needs the system, the balance, the population control, and the population.

The time skipping triggers a flash of deja view to the end of 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY, in which Bowman experiences aging/time jumps in the presence of the Monolith.

Chef Paul…

This is a detail I didn’t really get until after a second screening…

The way Curtis, Edgar, and other Tailies speak of Paul when they encounter him in the Protein Block section is a little puzzling. They recognize him, but he looks way different somehow. It’s been some time since they’ve seen him. First I imagined he was drafted from the Tail section for his expertise in some part of food science or processing or such, the way that Jerry was taken for his skills as a violinist. So, Wilford must have put Paul to work on an alternative to long pig, because the Fronters weren’t going to share their livestock and the Engine was losing potentially valuable spare parts to the Tailies’ bellies.

The timeline is kind of funky, tho. If he was drafted to *create* a food solution for the Tailies, that was almost 18 years ago, because the first protein blocks showed up at least two months after the Snowpiercer started its endless journey. How and why would so many Tailies recognize a man they only knew for two months at best? So, maybe he was drafted to take the place of the original chef-scientist? MAYbe… But I think that we should listen to exactly what Paul says to everyone when they first meet him. That this (the turning of a valve) used to be done automatically, but since a part went extinct, it has to be done manually now. That’s not just small talk. That’s the explanation of his entire purpose on the train, as dictated by Wilford.

Well, that and passing on the Informant’s message capsules/bullets.

I imagine Claude showing up with security a few years earlier and asking for people who’d worked in factories or food processing. They would step forward and maybe Claude would pick out the three tallest individuals and then ask them to jump as high as they could, maybe to touch the ceiling. And Paul was the lucky winner, escorted from the tail section to the Protein Block car to learn his new place in the World.

Crazy crazy talk…

This is SO far out of the SNOWPIERCER ballpark, it’s somewhere in orbit, but that is where my head likes to go sometimes—outer space.

What if the world of SNOWPIERCER is somehow virtual? Powered either by electronic or psychic/oneiric means, it doesn’t really matter. Would it be one individual’s world? A shared world or dream? I can easily imagine metastories that would support both possibilities, but let’s not go even farther out. If the frozen apocalypse IS a WORLD ON A WIRE or SOLARIS-type sim, it might allow for technological or mental hacks, like matches appearing when needed, the jump-starting of the elder Marco killing machine, or the time skipping disruptions (or super speed?) in the Engine.

Fight your way to the front!

Keep on keepin on~


Something about Tilda Swinton’s Snowpiercer look rang uncanny to me…

"It’s our sustainable, eco-friendly form of protein…"

The future is now. =)

Fight your way to the front!

Keep on keepin on~

Lucas Lee in SNOWPIERCER! redux