Viral meme all your friends already know about, #4: Loituma Girl

Do not, repeat, do NOT click on this link if you actually have something even slightly, vaguely important to do today, or if you are at all worried about maintaining your sanity.

Okay, fine, click.

Loituma Girl is the most spellbinding thing I've ever seen, and the worst part is, I can't explain why. At least Wikipedia can explain what:

Loituma Girl (also known as Leekspin) is a flash cartoon set to a gibberish section of the traditional Finnish folk song "Ievan Polkka" sung by the Finnish quartet Loituma, taken from their 1995 debut album Things of Beauty. ... The cartoon consists of a 4-frame animation of the Bleach anime character Orihime Inoue twirling a leek (a type of green onion, called a negi in Japan) to a 27-second loop from the song. ...

The cartoon uses the second half of the fifth stanza (four lines) and the complete sixth stanza (eight lines) from the song. Unlike the rest of the song, these two stanzas have no meaning, consisting mostly of phonetically-inspired gibberish that vary from performance to performance and are usually made up on the spot by the singer (compare scat singing in jazz).

The origin of the cartoon is unclear. Within a few days of its appearance, tens of thousands of pages either directed to the possible origin or had the file uploaded on their own server. On 10 July 2006, the Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat reported that Loituma Girl had caused a resurgence in Loituma's popularity, and the band had received thousands of fan letters from around the world.

BBC's The World radio program even covered the animation in a segment, in which they noted the clip's trance-inducing qualities: "This is basically a joke for someone who spends all of their time staring at a computer, made by people who spend all of their time staring at a computer."

So many questions! Why the Japanese-Polish fusion? Why a leek? Is this the new Hampster Dance? Will I ever get this song out of my head?

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Ernest Hemingway’s Guide to Life, In 20 Quotes
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Central Press/Getty Images

Though he made his living as a writer, Ernest Hemingway was just as famous for his lust for adventure. Whether he was running with the bulls in Pamplona, fishing for marlin in Bimini, throwing back rum cocktails in Havana, or hanging out with his six-toed cats in Key West, the Nobel and Pulitzer Prize-winning author never did anything halfway. And he used his adventures as fodder for the unparalleled collection of novels, short stories, and nonfiction books he left behind, The Sun Also Rises, A Farewell to Arms, Death in the Afternoon, For Whom the Bell Tolls, and The Old Man and the Sea among them.

On what would be his 119th birthday—he was born in Oak Park, Illinois on July 21, 1899—here are 20 memorable quotes that offer a keen perspective into Hemingway’s way of life.

ON THE IMPORTANCE OF LISTENING

"I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen."

ON TRUST

"The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them."

ON DECIDING WHAT TO WRITE ABOUT

"I never had to choose a subject—my subject rather chose me."

ON TRAVEL

"Never go on trips with anyone you do not love."


Ernest Hemingway Photograph Collection, John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston. [1], Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

ON THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN INTELLIGENCE AND HAPPINESS

"Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know."

ON TRUTH

"There's no one thing that is true. They're all true."

ON THE DOWNSIDE OF PEOPLE

"The only thing that could spoil a day was people. People were always the limiters of happiness, except for the very few that were as good as spring itself."

ON SUFFERING FOR YOUR ART

"There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed."

ON TAKING ACTION

"Never mistake motion for action."

ON GETTING WORDS OUT

"I wake up in the morning and my mind starts making sentences, and I have to get rid of them fast—talk them or write them down."


Photograph by Mary Hemingway, in the Ernest Hemingway Photograph Collection, John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston., Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

ON THE BENEFITS OF SLEEP

"I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I'm awake, you know?"

ON FINDING STRENGTH 

"The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places."

ON THE TRUE NATURE OF WICKEDNESS

"All things truly wicked start from innocence."

ON WRITING WHAT YOU KNOW

"If a writer knows enough about what he is writing about, he may omit things that he knows. The dignity of movement of an iceberg is due to only one ninth of it being above water."

ON THE DEFINITION OF COURAGE

"Courage is grace under pressure."

ON THE PAINFULNESS OF BEING FUNNY

"A man's got to take a lot of punishment to write a really funny book."


By Ernest Hemingway Photograph Collection, John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston. - JFK Library, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

ON KEEPING PROMISES

"Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut."

ON GOOD VS. EVIL

"About morals, I know only that what is moral is what you feel good after and what is immoral is what you feel bad after."

ON REACHING FOR THE UNATTAINABLE

"For a true writer, each book should be a new beginning where he tries again for something that is beyond attainment. He should always try for something that has never been done or that others have tried and failed. Then sometimes, with great luck, he will succeed."

ON HAPPY ENDINGS

"There is no lonelier man in death, except the suicide, than that man who has lived many years with a good wife and then outlived her. If two people love each other there can be no happy end to it."

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4 Movies, 1 Thing In Common II
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