Last week, a strange flurry of memes started covering the internet. They all had three things in common: classic Simpsons episodes, an unreasonable fear of downloading viruses to your computer, and something called "lee-me wire." At first glance, this might seem like an odd mix of random weirdness. But they're in fact a perfect slice of nostalgia aimed at a very particular audience -- namely, everyone who lost their virginity to the Shrek soundtrack.
Now, everyone who hasn't had to confront mortality by discovering their first grey pube may not understand what the hell these are referencing. That's because the Simpsons-Limewire memes are a rare thing on the internet: memes for middle-aged people. They target people who were teenagers in the early aughts -- the only ones who not only know what it feels like to think The Simpsons will never stop being funny, but have also felt the bitter sting of waiting five hours for a single Evanescence song to download, only to realize too late that they've just blue-screened their dad's computer.
The spoiled e-youngsters of today, who only have to fear silly things like doxxing, sextortion, and having their private information sold by Facebook for a ha'penny, will never understand how the internet used to a real sketchy place. And because the likes of YouTube and Pornhub didn't exist yet, piracy software was to only way to access the world's vast treasure of entertainment -- old SNL clips, ten-second porn, and most importantly of all, very tinny nu-metal.
And Limewire was the greatest P2P source for illegal free stuff. But it was also a dark place full of dangerous clicks, ready to exploit a less-tech-savvy generation that didn't know the difference between an .mp3 and an .exe file containing one of the bazillion Trojan Horses rolling around. Classic times!
So when combined with classic Simpson scenes (the dad jokes of the internet), this is very much a rallying cry to all the late Gen-X'ers who haven't died from snark poisoning to rise up and show all these Millennials that they can still shitpost with the best of them.
Cedric Voets no longer recognizes the hands that typed these dumb jokes. Follow him and his aging mind on Twitter.
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