By Joie Atejira, February 28 2017 —
The 2017 meme calendar continues to update, with Salt Bae claiming top spot for the month of January. Smart Guy Pointing at His Head and Blinking White Guy were considered February front-runners, but there is another meme competing for the top spot this month, destabilizing the meme scale — the Trash Dove.
Starting out as a lowly Facebook sticker, the Trash Dove earned its individual identity and appeal to shitposters abroad as something to stimulate lolz, with the GIF version where it violently thrashes its body up and down. Its newfound popularity has surpassed its adorable status as a conversational sticker. It has surpassed the Guy She Tells You Not to Worry About and even may replace “Cash Me Ousside” girl.
In terms of artistic quality, the Trash Dove is a decent drawing. The choice of purple livens up the pigeon’s figure and shows good birds-of-colour representation. The animation style is subtle and creates a sense of longing in the viewer.
The most striking feature is the large, ever-staring yellow eye. The size is definitely not vicious or threatening. -Instead, it inspires you to open your mind’s eye and look deep into your soul. Truly, Trash Dove is worthy of being placed in New York’s Museum of Modern Art. But if you’ve seen what else’s in the MOMA, that’s not necessarily a compliment.
The most important criteria for any image to become a modern meme masterpiece is its relatability, more than its versatility to be fused into any photo, video or phrase. Surely, an animation of a pigeon can be easily inserted into a GIF of Donald Trump’s signed legislation or be integrated into an alt-right group’s symbol. But a meme’s quality lies on how it connects to its viewer on a emotional or spiritual level. How can this pigeon be #relatable? Indeed, Salt Bae’s smooth sprinkling resonates when one showers a text with emojis and Blinking White Guy becomes all of us when we are asked to define what “cells” are. But the one-dimensional bird caricature cannot — and will never be able to — reflect a millennial’s struggle.
In conclusion, the Trash Dove deserves a spot in the trash where it came from and not alongside the greats of the meme calendar. It’s no surprise that this stupid bird came to life on Facebook, where people still laugh at six-month-old memes. Now stop sending me messages with this garbage sticker.
This article is a part of our humour section.