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NTMP 51: Enter the Burritoverse
Tex-Mex is always in season
New-to-me Phrases, January 29, 2023
The Phrases, With Context
This week we have a very Wikipedian exploration of a Wikimedian, spinal evolution gone awry, meta cookie marketing, bold Taco Bell assertions, and more. Let’s get to it!
1. Tech neck
I saw an ad for a workplace yoga class addressing tech neck and man, what a catchy phrase for a condition that’s emblematic of our existence in this hellscape timeline.
While spinal surgeons are concerned about the impact of tech neck on our necks, spines and shoulders, This Guardian piece takes a cheeky look at the condition, which is defined as neck pain resulting from looking at smartphones.
2. The Cabinet of Wikipedian Curiosities
First of all, power move by Wikipedia to rank first when you search for Depths of Wikipedia.
Third-fourth-fifth, there’s a newsletter, Discord server, and ::checks notes:: LIVE SHOWS (she’ll be in Chicago Feb. 26!). I’d actually go to one of these shows, and will be forever mad that I missed out on the Schitt’s Creek shows.
Thank you to My Favorite Murder for helping to popularize this trend, even though I stopped listening because despite adoring the co-hosts, I grew sickened by the inevitable spotlighting of murderous white men who prey on vulnerable people from vulnerable groups. By the way, MFM might not be the only podcast/website with a roadshow that spurred this trend. If there is an earlier source that popularized online-to-live-shows, let me know!
A takeaway here is that there’s sometimes way more cool stuff happening with the goofy social media accounts you follow.
My friend Mike, who writes the excellent music newslettersent me this one, a great read by journalist and author Cory Doctorow entitled "TikTok's Enshittification.”
Doctorow defines enshittification thusly:
Here is how platforms die: first, they are good to their users; then they abuse their users to make things better for their business customers; finally, they abuse those business customers to claw back all the value for themselves. Then, they die.
This is a long but compelling thinkpiece about the social media economy (spoiler: it’s as heinous as you’d suspect), and it links to a piece in Forbes that reveals that the TikTok For You page isn’t really based on your interests at all. They’re lying to their users? Shocker!
4. Cat News
Last week, Outside magazine’s newsletter reported that a rare cat (the Pallas’s cat) was spotted in the Himalayas. They cited a journal called Cat News, which is both a hilarious and awesome name for a journal. The perfect gift for the cat person in your life, Cat News tracks wild cats, not stories about how BooBoo got into the catnip and opened the back door again.
P.S. for my fellow search and rescue nerds (I know you’re out there): That same Outside newsletter shared a Google Drive link to these amazeballs search and rescue videos in Zion National Park.
5. Burrito season
According to the NYT (gifted link), Chipotle put out a call for more employees to cover their upcoming burrito season.
My husband pointed out that burrito season implies there is a burrito off-season—which is further proof that we are living in the worst timeline.
6. The Oreoverse
Awesome phrase or marketing nonsense? How about both?
Oreo is releasing its most meta Oreo ever: Oreos filled with Oreos. When I read this, I pictured a sort of Oreo club sandwich. Alas, the Most Oreo Oreo is just chopped up cookies added to the cream filling. I’d still try one. Stay weird, Oreo!
From USA Today
Timed to the arrival of The Most Oreo Oreos is a new online Oreo-themed virtual reality world called the Oreoverse. You can use your Meta Quest 2 or Meta Quest Pro VR headsets to explore the Oreoverse, or use your smartphone or computers and visit oreoverse.oreo.com. Once there, you can play Oreo-themed games and enter to win a $50,000 grand prize.
7. Selfie Bear
A Boulder, Colorado wildlife webcam attracted the attention of a particular bear, now dubbed Selfie Bear, who so far has used it to take over 400 selfies. But did they use that facetune filter that makes you look like a porcelain doll?
8. Taco Bell mac and cheese
Taco Bell Fire sauce is delicious. You read that right. It’s basically salsa roja enchilada sauce, which I love. They sell it in grocery stores and I put it on my Tucson Tamales, Taco Tuesday tacos, fajitas, etc.
This week, my middle kid (who does not read this newsletter) decided to add some Taco Bell Fire sauce to his Stouffer’s mac and cheese and he is now obsessed and claims it’s delicious. I don’t doubt him!
Do you put anything weird, like ketchup or Sriracha, on your mac and cheese? Has Dennis atweighed in on this?
That’s it for this week! Remember to stay curious and remain furious—especially because theoverlords still refuse to allow a “center text” option for newsletters, so EVERY WEEK my compiled phrases at the top of this newsletter look like shit.
Oh yes, and our democracy here in the U.S. is under constant threat because a handful of rich people don’t want to pay taxes, so they’re pumping disinformation out to the masses, who eat up every bit of fake outrage and then take actions that cause actual harm to both marginalized groups and themselves.
Anyway, hope you liked this distraction-from-the-horrors-of-today newsletter, bye!