Eric D. Snider

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I Can Has Cheezburger? Yes!

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I’m having a hard time explaining the appeal of I Can Has Cheezburger, a Web site devoted to cute pictures of animals (mostly cats) that have been humorously captioned. I mean, it’s obvious why cute pictures and humorous captions would be appealing; what’s hard to explain is why it’s so appealing that I squeal with glee each time a new one is posted.

It started in January with the picture shown at right. The caption became the name of the site, and now dozens and dozens of similar pictures have been posted. Some are funnier than others, and many recent ones are responses to previous ones. For that reason, I recommend browsing to the last page of the site and working your way forward.

The basic idea, I guess, is that animals are adorable, and that making them appear to speak in broken, child-like, poorly spelled English is even more adorable. I concur with this philosophy. “Can I have a cheeseburger?” is funny for the above picture, as that chubby cat does indeed look thrilled at the prospect of eating something. But “I can has cheezburger?” is 11, maybe 12 times funnier.

These pictures are known by various names: kittahs (from the way Cartman on “South Park” pronounces “kitty”), cat macros, and lolcats (“LAWL-cats,” from Internet lingo LOL). People first started making them to post in Internet forums, either as a commentary on the discussion, or as a cute way of quelling heated debates. I prefer “lolcat,” because it leads to a captioned picture of a walrus being called a “lolrus.” Here is the first lolrus (click for a link to the larger version):

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Now there’s an ongoing saga of walruses trying to find their buckets. Who knew walruses could be as cute as kitty cats?

18 Responses to “I Can Has Cheezburger? Yes!”

  1. Jesse Harris Says:

    I’M IN YR BLOG LEAVIN A KOMMENTZ

    (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.)

  2. Crystal Says:

    I LUB MAH BUCKET!

  3. RandyTayler Says:

    OH MAN! Oh my word. I haven’t laughed that hard in a long time. I had to stop myself from wasting the whole day reading those.

  4. Keri Says:

    My sister showed me these pictures. I think they’re cute, but I’ve stopped looking at them because the grammar for the captions is so terrible that it’s off-putting. I know that’s supposed to be part of the charm, but it makes me cringe.

  5. Audrey Says:

    LAWLing all over the place!!! I’ve seen some of those photos before but never knew where they came from.

    That walrus? Funniest thing I’ve seen in a LONG. TIME.

  6. Jonathon Says:

    Sometimes I begin to feel that the internet is a vast wasteland. And then someone provides a link to a site like this, and it restores my faith.

  7. Carrie Says:

    I was going through some of these with my mom, when we got to a particular one. I kind of cocked my head to the side, and I looked at my mom who was also confused. And then I sounded it out. Then we looked at each other again and both got it at the same time. And for the next 5 minutes, we laughed painfully, tearfully hard. I present to you that one

  8. Erica Says:

    Okay. . .this stuff is addictive. I went to the site, and at first I just thought, “???” Then I saw “I Hate Everything,” and whammo–I was a goner. ;-) Why, oh, why did I follow the link when I should’ve been studying for finals?

  9. Momma Snider Says:

    There was a link to a puppy site on there, too, and they are adorable. Not funny like that cat one, but with the added bonus of being dogs instead of cats.

  10. Melissa Says:

    I went to this site via Eric’s blog and I looked at every picture…SO funny! I love the one where the sandwich was photo-shopped into the cat’s hands, like he was eating it – I must have sent pictures from that site to half a dozen friends today. Awesome.

  11. Thoughtful Observer Says:

    Curse you Eric D Snider! Telling all of us innocent people about these horribly addictive sites that cause use to sit in front of our computers at work, trying to laugh soundlessly with tears streaming down our eyes, hoping to not get caught by our bosses and yelled at! For knowing our weakness for cats and small rodents! You should be ashamed of yourself. Do you want to get us fired?

  12. Homerific Says:

    If you want to see a truly hysterical cat website, try

    catsthatlooklikehitler.com

  13. David Manning Says:

    Okay, okay okay–everyone…

    HTTP://WWW.STUFFONMYCAT.COM/
    *pmph*

  14. Sergei Says:

    ichc? > stuffonmycat

  15. Sara R Says:

    By Common Consent has done some Mormon bloggernacle specific lolcats.

  16. Olympic Beret Says:

    This site is so famous, even Geoffrey Chaucer (yes, THE Geoffrey Chaucer) has gotten in on the action: LOLpilgrims

  17. Zach Zulli Says:

    NOO THEY BE STEALIN MAH BUCKET

  18. sam Says:

    I am on your blog, speaking in a manner that is grammatically correct.

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