Oh dat boi. What he could have put me through.
There was certainly a bit of irony involved when my attention was drawn to the popularity of a meme featuring a unicycle-riding frog, dubbed 'dat boi'. As a person playing with social media on the job, when something goes viral I can't ignore it. Especially when the image had come from a resource connected to our company.
And that the task of looking at this guy fell to me was the irony. I am, you see, batrachophobic. Meaning that I am intensely terrified of amphibians. A toad in the garden will have me breaking out in a cold sweat, as my heart pounds and I lose my words. Bring a disgusting frog into the picture and you can add nausea, shaking and hyperventilating to the list of symptoms.
The presence of a phobia is often associated with traumatic events and I connect mine with an incident that happened during my teens. I won't go into details, but suffice it to say it was the 60s and the stupidity of adolescence played a big part.
Whatever the reason, the reality is that for as long as I can remember I have tread warily through life, afraid to pull a weed in the flowerbed, to walk along a riverbank, or even to turn a page in National Geographic. Yes, even a picture can put me over the edge. Needless to say, given the plethora of amphibians in the warm seasons, this one has, while not exactly destroying the quality of my life, made things interesting.
I raised four active, healthy children, with the same curiosity and wonder as all others. There were two boys, with mischief and energy in spades, who brought me 'things' from time to time. As they walked cupped hands towards me, my throat closed, my chest constricted around my pounding heart. And there were two girls who wanted to explore the wonder of nature, the flowers in the gardens, the butterflies that flew above, the bugs that crawled beneath. And I, swallowed fear for about two seconds, then passed the position of expedition leader to their father.
Then four years ago this summer, a beautiful bundle of joy arrived in the form of a granddaughter. Fom the time she could see, it was clear she carried within her an extraordinary love of animals. Whether it's a worm or an alligator, she can barely contain her excitement when seeing them. As a result her toy chest contains an assortment to rival any zoo.
It was during a visit when she was still just a tot that something strange happened. Among her collection is a group of realistic plastic frogs that my daughter kept hidden when I was there. On this particular day, however, I was sitting in a chair when our Little Missy, without word or even a glance, walked to me and dropped four of them into my lap before walking away.
My daughter got them cleared away before I went apoplectic, and I puzzled over how strangely the act had been. Making it even odder is that she has done it several time in the years since. The same way.
I wonder at her intuitiveness, if she is trying to help me, or prepare me. Either way, I recognize recently that I need to try and fix this. Long story short. at least from this point on, a simple exercise from a hypnotist has not exactly cured me, but has made the reaction tolerable.
So, it is with pride today that I bring to you a collection of frogs, including dat boi from AnimationFactory.com
Friday, May 13, 2016
Thursday, May 12, 2016
Baseball diamonds are alive again with the crunch of bat and smack of glove. Hard bodies line up on other side of the net, smooth sand beneath their feet for beach volleyball. Fleet of foot, soccer players tear up the pitch from goal to goal while reflex sharp tennis athletes serve up challenges on the court.
For now, however, many eyes are turned to the indoor action of the National Basketball Association playoffs. Currently in conference semi-finals, teams are doing what they do best, combining athleticism and showmanship to entertain armchair and court-side fanatics alike.
Though the NBA is dominated by American teams, Canada is represented as well. The Toronto Raptors, as of this writing, are still in the game having fought back to take control of the series with the Miami Heat.
I admit I've never really followed basketball that closely. At least not since high school when attendance at any sporting event meant you could miss classes.
But when I do find myself in front of the television while these towers of athleticism are at play, I think it's almost as pretty to watch as ballet. From dribbling to pivoting to hanging ten, there is grace to every element of the sport. Add to that the speed and the rock star charisma of the players and it's not too difficult to get caught up in the action.
Though it might be a rare occasion for me to see a game, there are many faithful followers who aren't missing a moment, while others less dedicated are at least keeping a close eye on the action. Fanatics as they are, they might be distracted by other sporting events. For now, though, basketball is the one game foremost in their thoughts.
This all makes the timing perfect for me to share some fun basketball clipart collections. They are ideal for decorating emails, promotions, websites, etc.
iCLIPART.com Basketball Illustrations
Clipart.com Basketball Illustrations
Animation Factory Basketball Animations
Acclaim Images Basketball Illustrations
Wednesday, May 11, 2016
Earlier this month a meme featuring a frog on a unicycle began making the rounds of social media. Suddenly dat boi, as he was dubbed, was everywhere.
While the first meeting with him required his presence incorporated with an additional phrase, "O shit waddup", to express gleeful excitement, it has since taken on a life of its own. Different versions of memes have been created, even one with Kermit on a bicycle which says simply, "Here come dat boi."
The original frog on a unicycle, however, is the popular choice and besides memes, he can be found in movie posters (a spectral image in "Saving dat boi", for example), and even on a t-shirt.
Type dat boi into your browser's search engine and be prepared to be amazed at the scope of this dude's fame. Brian Feldman, a reporter covering New York magazine's internet culture, tracked the origins of the cycling amphibian to AnimationFactory.com. Alison Hoy, president of Vital Imagery Ltd., parent company of AF, responded to his request for comment.
"We are very excited to see the resurgence in popularity of animated GIF images on the internet and in social media particularly. A good meme can brighten up your a day and with over 500,000 quirky and amusing images available on AnimationFactory.com we really do have something for everybody."
Memes are fun. While we might not always understand them, they offer amusement in a way that translates well for social media. The ones that go viral, such as dat boi, according to "meme scientist" Ari Spool, typically border on the absurd. Another factor, he says, is an inside-joke element. (You can see the full interview here: http://www.vice.com/en_ca/read/we-asked-an-expert-why-some-memes-work-better-than-others)
Following a study of memes, (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-3366348/What-makes-meme-Scientists-reveal-secret-causes-images-viral.html) researchers revealed that short and sweet memes tend to get more attention, while those with swear words are least likely to be shared.
Hmm.. guess dat boi is the exception to that rule.
If you have something to say and share, and would like to create a meme or two of your own, there are plenty of meme generators to be found online. Here's a random sample:
imgflip Meme Generator
Google Play Meme Generator
Tuesday, May 10, 2016
Thirty-six years ago May 10 we both said "I do" — to commitment, to accepting the other as our partner and to building a life together.
In the time since, we've been pretty lucky. Sure there've been some missteps. However, they've been so insignificant as to be forgettable. For the most part, we have lived, loved and laughed, which is all any couple could ask.
Though we've both reached a point where memories have faded and mutual ones often differ in the details recalled, we are clear on those surrounding our big day. Whether it's something as mundane as the weather or the unique moments special only to us, when we talk about the wedding, our recollections are the same. First among them always though, are the moments of laughter, a state that has defined our relationship from the start.
We chuckle when we recall my husband's first comment to me after the ceremony ("Nice hat.") , surprised as he'd been to not see the traditional tiara and veil. What can I say? It was 1980.
We remember opening the church door to a shower of rain, unexpected after a day of sun, yet not at all concerning to young newlyweds who shrugged, smiled and arm in arm, spiritedly dashed down the stairs and sidewalk to the waiting car.
We still laugh telling the story of his mischievous brother-in-law delaying our honeymoon departure by stealing our licence plate. And the tale of the drunken mayor waylaying us in the hotel parking lot before check-in to beg a ride home never gets old.
People often remark on the senseless expense of weddings. They can be elegant or kitschy, showy affairs or personal ones that speak to unique style. But no matter what they are most definitely one of the biggest deals we do in this life. A wedding is and should be a day to remember.
So, for all the 'You's' and 'I's' who will become 'We's', here is a wonderful collection of iPHOTOS.com Wedding Photos
Also, with a subscription to this site, you can access all of the great images for use in your projects. They are currently offering 50% off all subscriptions until May 31, so it's a good time to try it out. There are so many benefits, including access to all sizes of photos, right up to XSuper. To take advantage, simply enter promo code IP090516B here:
Monday, May 9, 2016
Over three decades ago, I married my guy. In the time since we have built a wonderful life together which every year we take the opportunity to acknowledge and honour. We have marked the occasion in a variety of ways, from quiet dinners together to parties with friends.
But always we celebrate. Because, contrary to what I've heard others say, I've never felt that an anniversary is just another day. It's about as significant a milestone as any couple can have. All of your other married life stories start from that day.
So, with busy calendars before us, my hubby and I opted to honour the 2016 occasion with a nice dinner out on Saturday. Finding the time in our busy lives to reconnect in a relaxing setting was the perfect way to remember when our dance began and all the steps since.
The next morning brought us Mother's Day. This was the first one without my own mom, reminding me only too well of how important this celebration is. Moms are there with us from the start of life, bucking us up when we need it, wiping tears, fixing scrapes and sacrificing quietly. To make her feel special at least one day a year seems a pretty good reason to party.
I was lucky to be with all of my kids for this one. In part because of another celebration on Sunday.
There is no greater gift than the arrival of a child and in 2014 we welcomed a grandson May 5 and a granddaughter May 13. Having each been guest-of-honour at their own first-birthday fetes, their moms decided this year to team up and let them share the spotlight. My younger daughter, who might have been a party planner in a previous life given her penchant for organizing events and making everything from stationery, to party favours and decoration, decided to theme the day around Dr. Seuss's Thing One and Thing Two from The Cat in the Hat. From the identifying t-shirts and decorated cupcakes it was a perfect day for little ones and photo ops.
Thus it is then, as I sit back before my desk on yet another Monday morning after a fun-filled weekend, the only idea in my mind is celebration. Here are wonderful clipart collections in keeping with that thought:
iCLIPART.com Celebration Illustrations
Clipart.com Celebration Illustrations
Acclaim Images Celebration Clipart
ClickArt Online Celebration Images