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☁️ Miles High Club ☁️ 🦀 Crab Planet 🦀

Miles Klee
Miles Klee
Oh dip. Is this happening again? Okay, I’m ready. This is Miles High Club.

Well, readers, spring is undeniable now. Hummingbirds are getting territorial about the feeder out back, and the squirrels that inhabit the tree out front have fornicated in my line of sight. (It involved a lot of ass-biting.)
I’m spending my money on fresh pasta at the farmers market and a stockpile of allergy pills that could protect my sinuses even if triffids invade the city. Never rule out a triffid event—it’s more likely than you think!
"Ma'am, is this plant bothering you?"
"Ma'am, is this plant bothering you?"
In the meantime, you can check out my second guest appearance on the very good podcast Ten Thousand Posts, an in-depth and always alarming dissection of digital spectacle. One listener said that my voice is “mellifluous.” Are they full of shit? You be the judge.
At the moment, however, I’m in a great mood because I discovered that when the refrigerator makes this irritating buzz, just slapping the side of the freezer makes it stop. It’s a simple, satisfying hack that’s sure to have no negative consequences in the long term.
But enough of my riveting domesticity. You’re here for the lovingly curated flotsam of this week. Let’s dive in.
Needles to Say
I have one sizable tattoo, and the country opening again has me considering a second. I’m not alone in this, I know, because tattoo artists are booked solid lately—and because a handful of their clients have elected to commemorate the “end” of the pandemic.
Or, at least, vaccination status:
It might feel sore in the morning.
It might feel sore in the morning.
If you’re groaning at the image above, I hear you. A couple of bigger accounts have posted it over the past week, expressing a combination of disbelief and ridicule. But! You see that watermark in the lower left quadrant? It leads you to the source, @grandoldmemes, a rabidly Trumpist content mill that used the pics for a more politicized punchline.
From there, the tat compilation migrated to the sewers of 4chan, and it’s now destined to become a mainstay of disinfo-poisoned Facebook boomers who believe that President Biden is tagging docile libs to be harvested for organs when the Great Threshing is upon us.
This isn’t an accident, of course. While I couldn’t trace the upper left tattoo (which is, let’s say it, charmingly low-key), two more were lifted from a May 21 thread on a toxic message board for LSU football (where they were mocked for “virtue signaling”), and the fourth seems to have originally surfaced in the Twitter account of a dumb covid truther, reappearing May 21 on a strident anti-vaxxer feed.
Which is to say: yes, there’s some cringe vaccine ink out there, but don’t carry water for the chuds by attacking people who proudly got their shots. At least they didn’t have this written on their skin in March 2020, as one unfortunately poetic Kentucky woman did:
Another tragic victim of metaphor.
Another tragic victim of metaphor.
Who Peed My Pants?
Next up, we check in on a sartorial movement that will have some of you scrambling for the “unsubscribe” button: Wet Pants Denim.
"Wet Look, Dry Feel."
"Wet Look, Dry Feel."
Calvin Kasulke investigated the “jeans that look pissed in, but aren’t” company for MEL magazine back in 2019, and was even brave enough to wear a pair in public. Ultimately, it appeared to be a legitimate business that also functioned as performance art, satirizing the outer fringe of head-turning fashion.
Yet, for something you can only take as an elaborate internet joke, Wet Pants Denim has been remarkably long-lived, and the brain trust behind it remains committed to the bit. Earlier this month, TikTok user @lin.yue posted a clip of herself “unboxing” some fake-pee-stained cutoffs, and when commenters had questions, the WPD social media team swooped in to answer. Customer support at its finest.
The hustle doesn't take a day off.
The hustle doesn't take a day off.
Unhinged stunt capitalism: not 100% awful, I guess?
Planet of the Crabs
Finally, I’d like to share a theory. Just as we move through different phases of the Chinese zodiac—with a different animal for each year—I believe that meme culture exhibits a zoological progression.
Consider the earliest period of “viral” sharing, which was dominated by cats: LOLcats, Keyboard Cat, Caturday, etc. Then came the rise of the frogs. Kermit, leader of the Muppets, was enlisted for many an image macro; a unicycling frog known as Dat Boi captured hearts and minds; Pepe the Frog became a lightning rod in the 2016 election.
What creature holds sway today? I’m here to make the case for crabs.
If the cats spoke to our whimsical naïveté, and frogs flourished in an age of clashing ideologies, crabs are postmodern signifiers, the reflexive commentary on our very habit of turning animals into content.
Their prehistoric design lends them a thrilling alien quality, yet their ability to clutch cigarettes, knives and money means they are forever enacting human drama. They’re such useful avatars of mood, in fact, that people post footage of computer-animated crabs dancing to rave music whenever an odious public figure dies.
Alex 🪱
You can tell exactly when Rush Limbaugh died using this graph of people searching crab rave on google
Then there’s the biological fact that crabs are unavoidable. Convergent evolution has repeatedly delivered crab-like crustaceans in a phenomenon known as carcinisation.
Put it all together and you have a remarkable, even mystical energy. The crab is at once the past and future, the only constant amid ceaseless change and uncertainty.
Crustaceans have evolved into the shape of a crab at least 5 independent times. I do not like this.
@cableknitjumper Some cosmic horror for you: given the consistent nature of fluid dynamics in water at temperatures where carbon-based life can survive, and the sheer probability of life to be rife in the universe, there are probably several intelligent species of crab-like aliens out there.
Can anyone or anything challenge the dominance of crabs? Hard to say, but I’m keeping an eye on the scientists who just published a study about getting lobsters high. So far, the only result is slower-moving lobsters, but I think we have to be prepared for a new breed of chill ocean critters that may change the game entirely.
The quest for forbidden knowledge continues.
The quest for forbidden knowledge continues.
At this point, dear reader, I must bid you adieu. Remember that you can always reply to these emails with tips, comments, corrections, queries and requests—I’d love to hear from you.
A humble reminder, too, that Miles High Club has a tip jar: three bucks a month supports your jobless correspondent, who does not want to polish his résumé. Plus, exclusive stuff is on the way. Upgrade to premium membership here!
And, until we meet again, may the blessings of crab be with you.
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Miles Klee
Miles Klee @milesklee

Internet nonsense and chill vibes.

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