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Tumblr — And Allegra — Discover Formula One
To paraphrase a TikTok I made recently, pretty much everyone who knows me is surprised that I’ve recently gotten invested in Formula One. The degree to which I’ve been anti-sports — or rather, sports-indifferent — has been consistent and unremarkable, so this turn comes as a bit of a shock. Possibly even more so than when I pivoted from pop music to polar exploration.
Not that I plan to get quite as deeply into Formula One as I have into the history and culture of Arctic expeditions, but I am genuinely enjoying it. It’s pretty simple: ten teams, twenty cars, one driver for each car. There are 20-plus races in different exotic locations all over the world during a season. The driver with the most points wins the driver’s championship, and the team with the most points wins the constructor’s championship.
The sport can be defined by a lot of different adjectives. “Expensive.” “European.” “Predictable.” The same teams (Red Bull, Mercedes) tend to land at the top every single year because they have more money to build better cars, and then the other eight or so jostle for what’s called the “midfield.” The fun stuff for me is in the simplicity of the actual race (Cars Go Fast) and in the drivers who make up the ensemble cast. Listen, I love The Terror — I simply can’t resist media where there are A Bunch Of Dudes Dealing With Stuff.
I’ve managed to get a couple friends into F1, and recently watched my first live race at a bar in Brooklyn. It was not that crowded — but probably more so than it would have been in past years. F1 has been actively expanding into the US ever since they were purchased by the American consortium Liberty Media in 2017, ousting controversial honcho Bernie Ecclestone and introducing a raft of changes to the sport meant to modernize it. One of those changes was the launch of Netflix’s Drive to Survive series, which many long-time fans dislike for its reality-TV soapiness and manufactured drama. Needless to say, that stuff is total catnip to me. It managed to get me interested in the drivers as characters, which is the only way I’m ever going to get into anything.
F1 is one of the top sports on Tumblr, by the way, right below hockey. Hockey, you ask?!? Yes indeed. For those not in the know, there is a thriving segment of hockey fandom that pivots around shipping the hockey players with each other and writing fan fiction about them. This is as valid a way to enjoy sports as any, and, of course, the vast majority of those fans are as genuine and dedicated fans of their teams as the next dudebro in the bleachers. One reigning theory I’ve seen is that this side of hockey fandom started to take off around 2010, when Fall Out Boy was on hiatus, Panic! At The Disco had collapsed, and a bunch of Chicago-based bandom RPF writers (band fandom real people fiction writers) pivoted to stanning the Blackhawks during their Stanley Cup-winning peak. Another claim is that it was in fact One Direction’s hiatus in 2015 which caused hockey to be a Thing in fandom, because 2015’s draft class was “like that.”
I’ve always had a relative blind spot around sports fandom, other than knowing all of the above second-hand, but obviously sports are like, the oldest fandom ever, second possibly only to religion. Getting into F1 has not only been fun but educational, allowing me to get a taste of a vital area of fan culture that has long and frustratingly eluded me.
And okay, because I know someone’s going to ask, my favorite driver is Daniel Ricciardo. That smile!
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New meeeerrrchhhhhhh. This incredible design was created by Gabby Kash. The shirts come in black and white and you can pick them up over at the Garbage Day store. I think they’re extremely cool and very relatable!!
"I'm A Robot, But I Still Feel Like A Human"
The new popular meme is "I'm not a robot." The meme started on 4chan and has since spread to other websites like Reddit and Tumblr. The meme is often used to express a lack of interest in something or someone.
This new meme is all about the importance of being yourself and not letting anyone else control you. It's a great way to stand up for yourself and to remind others that we're all different and that's what makes us special.
There are many reasons why people enjoy memes. Some people may enjoy the fun and practicality of them. Another reason may be that they provide a type of entertainment that is not available to everyone. They can be used to communicate difficult or funny information or to make others think about things they may not want to think about.
The Section Above Was Written By Artificial Intelligence
I wanted to see what a Garbage Day item would look like without a human involved. So I asked OpenAI’s GPT-3 test-davinci-002 language model to “write a small article about a new meme.” It came up with a meme called “I’m not a robot,” which it said was becoming popular on Reddit and Tumblr after starting on 4chan. Which I thought was interesting (and a little eerie). I then refreshed it a few times to get a solid definition of the meme. Then I asked text-ada-001, another GPT-3 language model, for an explanation of why people like memes, just to mix things up. I also asked text-ada-001 for the headline. Finally, I went over to the Midjourney Discord and asked it to generate “a new internet meme called ‘I am not a robot’”.
I did some light editing, but not much. There was a weird stray capital letter in there and one part where I blended the two different language models had some repetition, so I cut a clause at the start of that sentence. Other than that, what you see above is what the bots spit out. I asked GPT-3 if it enjoyed being a Garbage Day columnist and it said it did and said it would love to write for me again about pop culture and current events. Then I asked it what its favorite band was and I got real bummed out.
These New Apes Are Disgraceful
When the NFT craze finally dies down I think we’re going to look back and really marvel at how much great copypasta JPG collectors have given the world. “All my apes gone,” “Multiple slurp juices on a single ape,” “We can prove the promise of ape community,” and, now, “These new apes are disgraceful”. These guys just don’t miss. There’s a lot to love about the tweet above, but I think my favorite part is the implication that there are multiple generations of Bored Ape Yacht Club holders, an NFT project that is barely a year old. Anyways, I hope this old, wisened ape can reach some kind of armistice with this rude, young upstart ape. A yacht club divided cannot vibe.
Anyways, while we’re talking about Web3, a reader named Mark tipped me off about the new Solana phone. Solana is a faster, but much less secure blockchain than Ethereum that can be used for web development. It’s probably the second-most popular blockchain for NFTs. The company announced yesterday that it was launching a smartphone called Saga, as well as “a crypto layer built on Android to make the mobile web3 user experience seamless.”
Now, per Solana’s press release, Web3 does not work super well on smartphones. This is true. But, not mentioned in Solana’s press release, there are a million reasons why you would not want Web3 to work super well on smartphones! It’s an entire internet ecosystem built on apps that sync with wildly insecure and uninsured crypto wallets.
A Good Tweet
It’s All Kicking Off In The HVAC Subreddit
In the before time, when Facebook was just a twinkle in Mark Zuckerberg’s eye, the internet was, for the most part, a quieter, slower place. There was not a lot of financial or social benefit for posting in online communities and the people who frequented those spaces were either people with extremely niche hyperfixations, furries, Star Trek and Star Wars fans, and people getting graduate degrees. Often, these were all just the same person.
It was not unusual to see a wildly aggressive, and, yet, incredibly low-stakes argument playing out over the course of several hours, days, or sometimes weeks. I also read the Twitter account, @dril, as a pitch-perfect parody of the type of guy who spent too much time on these kinds of message boards.
The assumption has been that this kind of internet discourse has been lost to time. Now, everything’s as high-stakes as it can be. We aren’t just arguing about cartoons, we’re fighting for social justice against genuine neo-nazis. We aren’t just cyberbullying a weird horny man into logging off, we canceling a person in a position of irl power, who may very well may retaliate against the masses politically. The early internet Garden of Eden, it was assumed, was gone. That is, until I saw this tweet from Twitter user @danup, directing me to this truly glorious thread from Reddit’s r/HVAC. “Feels so good to run into a Real forum thread out in the wilds”. Yes, @danup, yes, it fucking does.
Earlier this week, user u/Chief_B33f in r/HVAC, the subreddit “for Heating, Ventilation, & Air Conditioning technicians,” posted about a scene in an earlier episode of Stranger Things, because it features an air conditioning unit that did not exist in the 1980s.
“For those who don't know, this show takes place in the mid 1980's, and the AC in the background of this scene is from the late 90's to early 2000's,” u/Chief_B33f wrote, not knowing that they were singlehandedly preserving one of the oldest and most cherished forms of online communication. Here is a smattering of my favorite comments from this thread:
“Saw an Eaton disconnect in the background of one of the labs scenes and picked up on the sticker.”
“Have you ever played Call Of Duty and heard the condensers running? Same with the Division/Rainbow series”
“Those things are tanks! Relay, fan, capacitor, compressor, coil”
“Yea this kind of knowledge ruins a lot of scenes for me. Kinda annoying that their set designer didn’t think of hiding it”
Look guys, it’s Friday. The world’s a mess. We’re all tired. Go read this thread and remember the good times.
The Editing On This Video Is Honestly Wild
This video is so well done. It was created by YouTube creator chiptuner, who wrote in the comments that they literally learned Blender to make it. I don’t why they made it! But it’s still very impressive.
Another Good Tweet
Some Stray Links
P.S. here’s a real bad haircut.
***Any typos in this email are on purpose actually***