Cakerolling (Or, Why the Internet is Amazing, and Borges Would Be Proud)

So, yesterday my roommate and I were searching wikipedia for a list of internet memes (don’t ask why, but it all started with Admiral Ackbar*). While browsing through the internet memes category, we discovered a meme new to both of us: Cakerolling. At first, I assumed this would be a variation on the famous Rickrolling, whereby another person is sent an obfuscated link to a youtube video of Rick Astley’s Never Gonna Give You Up, but instead of Rick Astley presumably a Cakeroll would involve sending someone to a video of Cake.

Boy, was I wrong. Instead, the victim of a cakeroll is greeted by this hilarious (and not safe for work) video of an Icelandic television show remixed with Lil’ John:

I highly recommend the video, it’s sort of amazing. What’s more amazing, however, is that the wikipedia page was created on November 29th, only one day before my roommate and I stumbled upon it. Even better, the page was marked for deletion seven minutes later, for being an unsourced neologism.

So, here’s my request: let’s save Cakerolling. Why? Because I’m a fan of whimsy, and because I’ve been Rickrolled enough times to think it’s funny (including my favorite rickroll, when the Misanthropologist called me from a wedding where “Never Gonna Give You Up” was actually playing).

Here’s the plan: Let’s source Cakerolling, and thus save it. One possible source? Why, this blogpost of course! Beyond that, I recommend Cakerolling your (cool, not watching Youtube vids indiscriminately at work) friends. Because we can. And because it would make Borges proud.

Next post will cover another Borgesian event – that we have been in a recession for a year now, and yet have only been in a recession for a day.

* “It’s a trap!”



  1. My predictions: A. Cakerolling will become a hit. It is irresistable. B. Cakerolling will get somebody fired. C. Time between A and B: 3 weeks.

  2. Dan, I’ve already told you in person (but I thought it was worth a comment), that this video is so endlessly fascinating that it inspired multiple layers of thought and research from both me and Shannon.

    At first, I was just determined to figure out the source of the supreme disturbingness surrounding this video. It didn’t take long to see that the source of the weirdness was that it had artfully twisted the cute “grown-up-ness” on the part of the main character, by the introduction of “adult content” in the other sense of the word “adult”.

    But then, it went further. I realized how ripe this Lazy-Town show was for modification. The catchy beats and hyper-active characters are perfect material to mold into all kinds of disturbing forms.

    Then I thought, is this a metaphor for our society’s treatment of women? First they’re cute when they’re grown-up acting, but by juxtaposition we can see the trajectory of this “cuteness” in the Lil’Jon video?

    But *then* I found another layer of craziness: the girl playing Stephanie (pink-haired protagonist of Lazy-Town) is actually 17! And not only that, but she’s trained as a hip-hop dancer (explaining why there’s an almost regaeton beat in “Cooking by the Book, and the girl’s dance style fits the hip-hop Lil’Jon video).

    I don’t even know what to make of this last discovery, but it only makes this somehow more disturbing to me.

  3. Michael

     /  December 4, 2008

    I don’t think you’ve quite pinned what it is about the video that people love, but at least you’re trying.

    And she was actually 14 or 15 when the episode was filmed.

    BTW, someone keeps deleting the cakerolling entry on Wikipedia even though it seems like a perfectly decent entry.
    Perhaps some overly wholesome dork who finds the video offensive?

  4. I just noticed that the “Nick Jr” logo is on the screen at all times, which means that whoever made this delightful music video had to copy it into each L’il Jon scene. That’s the type of attention to detail that really makes this video a winner.

    Also, by comparing this mash-up with the original “Cooking by the Book” video, you can tell that the producer of this video used many scenes from other episodes of LazyTown. I take from this that s/he has a deep appreciation for the original material.

    The most disturbing imagery is when the character Stephanie picks up the caulking gun and then we see white “frosting” being ejaculated, while Mr. Jon sings “grab that dick it’s yours, bitch” (0:57). Classy.

    I think this video really sticks with people because of the ease by which Stephanie is sexualized. L’il Jon is a caricature of himself, as Chappelle so adroitly demonstrated, and adds nothing of his own. Much like litmus paper, by adding L’il Jon to any situation we can see the level of potential decontextualized sexualization (PDS). I call this “the L’il Jon test.”

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