Whether they’re toddlers, teenagers, or 23-year-olds, young people are disgusting. Old people are disgusting too of course, because being gross is the human condition. So let’s celebrate it by digging into the trends and topics fascinating internet youth this week: mucus fishing, vabbing, and most disgusting of all, having to work for a living.
I apologize in advance if you’ve never heard of these two things that are growing popular among young people on the social medias.
- Mucus fishing: Mucus fishing is using a cotton swab or your finger to drag the mucus out of your eyes, and post a video of the stomach-turning process. Not only is it gross, but removing the mucus from your eyes can cause irritation and result in the production of more mucus. Ophthalmologists agree that it is a bad idea to touch your eyeballs.
- Vabbing: Popularized by “certified sexologist” Shan Boodran, “vabbing” is a portmanteau that combines “vagina” and “dabbing.” So it’s dabbing vaginal fluid on your skin like perfume with the idea of attracting a partner. It’s frequently done before a sweaty workout at the gym. Vaginas are awesome and all, but I have to stop thinking about this now.
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Three TikTok takes on work: Quiet quitting being “volun-told,” and the perils of the non-toxic workplace
As the trends above show, social media can be a bad thing, but as a counterweight to all that vabbing and mucus fishing, here’s something positive that young people are getting out of TikTok: Career advice from peers.
Before the internet, young workers’ main sources of “how to have a job”-related information were heavily management-slanted: Inc. Magazine, or brochures from HR. But now, rather than reading articles with titles like, “Are you working hard enough?” entry-level drones can get no-bullshit working wisdom with a “you are more important than your job” bias.
Like this video from zkchillin that defines the concept of “quiet quitting.” Quiet quitting is “when you’re not outright quitting your job. But you’re quitting the idea of going above-and-beyond. You’re still performing your duties, but you’re no longer subscribing to the hustle culture mentality that work has to be your life.” Definitely something I wish I had considered when I was 21 years old and knocking myself out for people who didn’t respect me.
The Corporate Chase is a TikToker devoted to career advice and jokes, and his many videos are full of practical words young workers need, like what to say when your boss gives you more work with no extra pay, and what it feels like to be “volun-told” to do extra work. The videos are funny memes instead of anything life-changing, but the comments, in which young workers commiserate and share experiences, are the real joy of this account.
My final Tikjob influencer is ayomitok, who promises career advice and humor, but I’m not sure they’re the best source of either. In this video, ayomitok reports that their current workplace is not toxic enough. “I realize I low-key live for the drama and thrive in chaos,” they write, “my new job is not dysfunctional enough to get my best work out of me.” Also a little questionable: naming/shaming a company for having the temerity to not hire you. And then doing it to another company. At the risk of sounding like a writer for Inc. Magazine, potential employers can look at your TikTok—who’d want to risk being publicly blasted by even interviewing someone who did this?
Police departments from Miami to St. Louis are warning people about the “Kia Challenge.” There are, reportedly, videos on TikTok and YouTube that show off how easy it is to steal certain models of Kias and Hyundais. I’m not sure how many videos there are, or whether they issue a challenge to steal cars, but the core information is accurate. According to our always-accurate sister site Jalopnik, car thieves really can bypass the chip in the key of some models of Hyundais and Kias by sticking a phone charger in a port in the stealing wheel. From there, they drive off, leaving Kia owners to take the bus. It’s not exactly a new problem, but the spread of videos detailing it on TikTok may be driving an uptick in car thievery. Or maybe it’s the spread of videos warning about the videos that show you how to steal cars.
I’m going to get all Inception right now: This week’s viral video is literally a viral video. Amusing science YouTubers Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell’s latest video is a deepish dive into The Deadliest Virus on Earth: Lyssavirus, also known as “rabies.” You’re probably aware of the macro-effects of rabies—how it makes you go mad, foam at the mouth, and fear water—but the microscopic world of Lyssavirus is just as interesting and scary. The complex way it tricks your immune system into not killing it while it slowly infects nerve cells until it reaches your brains is as horrifying a story as Cujo. While full blown rabies is nearly 100 percent fatal, there’s usually a long time between being bitten by a rabid Bassett hound and death, so victims can be saved with a vaccine. Usually.