Years ago, a group of three women in Ohio stormed into a Victoria’s Secret store and stole 62 bras. They were in and out so quickly that they still haven’t been apprehended (or shall I say, “busted”?! 😉 One of the women was, however, caught on the shopping mall security camera (pictured above).
What caught my attention was not the elated look on her face; it was the meme on her t-shirt. If you recall, a few years ago Miss Sweet Brown went into her kitchen to grab herself a cold pop, and smelled what she thought was someone Barbecuing. It wasn’t long until she realized that, “Oh Lord Jesus!” It was a fire! Then she got bronchitis, and ain’t NOBODY got time for that! Her recollection of the calamity that evening made the local news, and that quickly was mixed – and remixed – and became one of the internet’s most famous meme children, with over 67 million views on YouTube.
(If you were in a coma or going through your Meth phase, here it is again (original news story and remix) here it is so you know what I’m referring to.)
This shirt proves the supreme power creativity has as a fast friend in social media. Art imitating life is not a new concept of course. Since man could pick up a stick we’ve been expressing through art what we experience in real life. But consider this shirt, and the path it took in its awesomeness to come to life:
- Sweet Brown’s parents had to create her.
- She had to be in her apartment at that exact time there was a fire. Modern refrigeration and soda had to be invented, as did BBQ.
- The film crew who filmed her were also all born, developed interests in working in communications, and got jobs at their local TV station to eventually cover Ms. Brown’s unfortunate scenario.
- YouTube had to be invented.
- The remixer had to be born and grow up with an acute talent for locating the perfect 80s TV references to accompany the news remix. Then 67 million pairs of eyeballs had to watch it.
- Twitter and Facebook and Instagram and everyone and everything else in the world who talked about this video had to be born and eventually develop a common interest in hilarity and satire.
- And then – and only then – did someone see a moneymaking opportunity to print on a shirt the very meme that Sweet Brown made possible, so powerful in its message that it was ensured to appeal to the very girl who stormed the Victoria’s Secret store in Ohio to steal 62 bras.
The moral of this mindful deconstruction?
Creativity and opportunity are everywhere, made easier to manifest by the power of social sharing and people’s ability to make fun of others. Internet memes are today’s shared experiences, shaped by cultural beliefs and basic desktop skills. And I am sure that although the criminal choices of a deviant shoplifter are looked down upon – perhaps by Ms. Sweet Brown herself – certainly her taste in fashion would not be questioned.
I hope the 124 Ohioian breasts that will benefit from the thief’s actions were worth it – otherwise… ain’t nobody got time for that.
A special thank you to Paul Bradshaw and Stacy Smith, who both first introduced me to Sweet Brown, and my new friend, Austin Coop, for inspiring this blog with your Facebook post.
Click to grab your own copy of my book “Be Your Creative Sexy Self”.
Leave a Reply