Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tuesday Memesday

If there is one feature of the natural world that has been overlooked lately, it's the rainbow. The rainbow differs from other natural objects such as trees, which can be seen/touched/experienced from a variety of different angles. A rainbow requires three elements to be in the exact right places in order to exist at all - the moisture in the air, the sun, and the observer. So in a sense, a rainbow is more than just something that happens during/after a rainfall - it's a collaborative effort that can't exist without someone there to take part.

Given the amazing properties of rainbows, it's no wonder that a vlogger called yosemitebear shows such excitement at the appearance of a truly majestic double rainbow. Please watch his reaction:

You can't deny that this guy is having one intense spiritual experience with that rainbow. When I first watched it, there were moments when I was about to laugh derisively at him, but those moments always dissolved into admiration - why not feel good about someone who's able to take such pleasure out of life's beautiful events?

When you google search "double rainbow yosemitebear," the first article that comes up is an ABC News piece entitled "'Double Rainbow' Guy Paul 'Yosemite Bear' Vazquez Was Sober...". Although I linked to the piece, I haven't read it. I feel no need to. What does it matter what was or wasn't in his system while he was documenting this experience? Whether or not it's true, the fact that he was sober or high or drunk or tripping all the balls tells me just about as much about him as the fact that he was (or wasn't) wearing jean shorts and a t-shirt while watching the rainbow. What's important is the genuine excitement and sense of wonder at the natural world.

Breezing through Paul Vazquez's youtube channel, one finds some pretty interesting stuff, including a bit of arhythmic tribal drumming, a total beatdown in a cage match, and an impassioned plea to the president involving something about the rights of American Indians. Seems like a passionate guy doing his own thing while documenting it for all to see.

But of course we couldn't call this a true meme without a third party coming into the mix and putting their own little spin on it. The third party in this case is the group of hipsteresque musicians behind the popular "auto-tune the news" series. They used their weapon of choice and transformed a spiritual outburst into a catchy pop melody. On the one hand, I feel like it's totally against the spirit of the original viewing of the legendary double rainbow. On the other hand, it's just such a cool and creative idea.

Heartfelt homage or mindless exploitation? YOU DECIDE!