Internet’s Inside Jokes

  –Akchayaa R, III B.A. English

After scrolling through the goldmine of memes that I have saved in my mobile, I finally found some divine inspiration to write this article. Do you have trouble initiating a conversation with someone you’re crushing on? Send them memes. Do you want to let your friends know how much you miss them? Tag them in memes. Do you want to – you know where this is going and you understand my point, right? Simply put, the ‘memeverse’ is expanding as you read this line and memes are becoming the universal language of the internet. And mind you, the internet is a cruel place and might label you ‘uncultured’ if you do not have an epiphany when you see a grape on a surgery table or an obese version of the Bugs Bunny whose name rhymes with fungus.

Jokes apart, memes are a serious business. With the gaining popularity of meme pages on social media sites like Instagram and Facebook, it is undeniably hard to keep up with the trending memes, their origin and sometimes what they even mean. Memes take up such an important place on the internet that there are websites like knowyourmeme.com that actually explain the meme and its origin. Memes nowadays are more than a funny template with a relatable caption. Today, almost everything (and I mean EVERYTHING) can be an inspiration for memes; from surprised Pokémon to moths. There is absolutely no limit to this creative art. While most memes are funny because they hardly make sense, some memes cater to our intellectual sides as well. Textposts (a type of meme without any pictures) like Oedipus not being able to read this post with ‘his own eyes’ and Instagram stories being compared to Mr. Gatsby’s parties will leave the literature nerds in splits (pardon my bias, for these are the only ‘intellectual’ memes I am able to think of).

Though memes are a very recent concept, the different kinds of memes and jargon associated with them is mind-boggling for a layperson to understand. Sometimes, a meme that looks simple might need references to memes that are five to six months old which is considered a long lifespan for a meme. For those who are not offended easily and enjoy dark humour, I would recommend ‘dank’ memes which might not adhere to any political correctness and make fun of mainstream or ‘normie’ memes. You might want to laugh at those in private while the others laugh at puppies and kittens being silly and classical paintings used as templates to represent current situations. The internet is in no dearth of memes surrounding politics, gender/sexuality and other pressing issues but with just a dash of humour to lighten the mood.

Apart from memes being just witty and entertaining, they seem to serve a deeper purpose for the millennial generation. It helps them cope with stress and actually gives them a sense of belonging. I mean, it is a nice feeling to know that there are people, just like you, who would rather pet the dog/cat at parties than socialise or feel victimised when elderly relatives ridicule your ripped jeans. Nobody today has time for long, hilarious anecdotes or five minute videos of dogs being adorably dumb, memes provide the same without taking much of our time. The internet can be harsh place, sometimes spewing with hatred because of differing opinions but memes definitely unite people and make it a better place. Excuse me before it gets all mushy and sentimental and ‘Heal the World’ starts playing in the background automatically for I have memes to hoard and tag my friends in.

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HUMANS OF STELLA

Nithu Rubha Rani J, English 2nd year
-Compiled by Samyuktha Shiva, English 2nd year

I had just finished my 10th boards and I had absolutely no idea what to do with my time. That’s when my childhood best friend, Rumaana, and I decided that we should sign up for baking classes. What was a chance decision then, in retrospect, has given me so much.

We loved the baking classes. Once the course was done, we started competing with each other; baking cakes and making ice creams or waffles. We’d always contribute to family get-togethers and birthday parties. During special occasions we’d make a batch of 100 cupcakes or ice creams and go over to orphanages.

It didn’t take us long to discover that we’d be a pretty great duo if we put together Rumaana’s ice-cream making and my baking skills.
We then decided to launch our very own brand -SCOOPY-DOO, which undertakes cake and ice cream orders.

From day one, we were very particular about  how we make our products; we would make ice cream with absolutely zero preservatives and bake our cakes with a lot of love and positivity.
From then on, we’d bake every day; try a hundred different flavours, new and old. After trying and testing we finally decided the flavours we’d go with and the final menu.

Today, some of our bestsellers are the classic Butterscotch and of course, Red Velvet.  We have also added Arabian desserts and puddings to menu, and as the summer approaches we are planning to start experimenting again and try more flavours.
Baking has become more than just a passion for us now. I honestly don’t know what I’d do without it; it brings me so much joy. Whenever I’m mad or upset about something, I just pick up the whisk and it whisks away all my troubles. Trust me; it’s a very satisfying feeling.

Rumaana on the other hand, is a very special person. She isn’t just my friend; she’s my teacher and my inspiration. We’re from Erode, and usually the Muslim girls there, or at least the ones I know, don’t step out of the house much or interact with too many people other than their close family members. Rumaana, however, has always been very spirited and has been taking big steps such as the one she has taken with Scoopy Doo. Her cousins have also been of great help to us. They run a hotel named The Biryani Hut back in Erode and they helped us base our company, as well as sell our baked goods and ice cream there.

Today we get orders via Biryani Hut, friends and family. We dream to make it bigger though, for we believe the sky is the limit for Scoopy Doo. After all, we love what we do, and nothing will change that, or stop us from doing it.

 

Café review: #Stories (Bookworms’ Library)

-Nevedetha Swaminathan, IIIrd B.Com (A&F)

Calling all bookworms and foodies in Chennai; you have a new place to hang out!

I am talking about the #Stories library-café located in K.K.Nagar. Formerly known as Bookworms’ Library, #Stories offers you the combined experience of having a quick bite to eat or a nice cup of beverage while reading a book. This place is owned and run by Mr. Gopi Sampath, and is located a little away from PSBB School.

The ambience of the place is incredibly relaxing and is extremely pleasing to the eye. The moment you step inside, you can see a beautifully decorated café, wallpapered with books and ample seating for you and your buddies.

Walk further in and you will see a door that leads you to the library. This library is home to over 35,000 books and magazines, both in English and Tamil and for all ages.

Mr. Gopi, who has been running the library since 2001, states that his main inspiration came from his visit to the US, where he had seen huge libraries and bookshops. He also wanted to prevent the slow decline of the reading habit. The idea of combining the library with the café came from his son, Seshasayee, who states that the café will be a good hangout spot and will also encourage people to come and take a look at the library.

Patrons of the library-café are usually families or students who want to enjoy a quiet and relaxed atmosphere. Many parents have also stated that adding the café has made it easier for them to bring their children along, who sit and enjoy delicious treats while the parents browse for books. Some children also accompany their parents to the library and develop their reading habit from a young age.

The library-café also has a beautifully decorated open space in the ground floor where they hold open mics, story-telling sessions etc.

This library-café is not short of innovative practices. Their tea is served in beautiful glass cups with copper spoons. The tea bag is enclosed in a cardboard sheet cut out like a flower, which opens up to reveal not only the tea bag but also a thought provoking quote. Kind of like a fortune cookie, but with tea!

For members of the library who live far away, the library-café also has a ‘Library on Wheels’ system, which is a mobile library. The van goes to different places every month on specified days and can hold about 3,000 books.

To anyone who wants to enjoy a quiet time with books or hang out with their friends in a new location, #Stories is ready to welcome you with open arms.

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