Thought Catalog

Hamsters

Kids ask me all the time what’s wrong with my face. Children lack social awareness, which makes them simultaneously horrible and awesome. Just when I want to turn around in my airplane seat and rip a kid’s feet off for kicking the back of my chair, he asks his mom in a loud voice why that old man is smelly.

Like so many great works of art, this video leaves so many questions unanswered. …Like, does the kitten eventually outgrow the ball and go on to lead a fulfilling life? Does his family eventually buy him a bigger ball? And what of the other black-and-white kitten? He sits to the side, a mute observer, like Rosencrantz and Guildenstern in Shakespeare’s Hamlet. …But what is his true story?

Everything seems vaguely normal, in that things seem predictably surreal, as you read sentences about Haley Joel Osment and Dakota Fanning Gmail chatting about hamsters, until, after maybe two minutes, you realize you’ve been ignoring that there are tribal-tattoo patterns near the margins and in other places and that the text is glowing reddish-black and sometimes has a slightly 3D nature, like it’s projecting a holograph of itself an inch above the page.

The use of Microsoft Paint and Paintbrush to create amateurish-looking, expressive, and fun art seems to be an emerging trend. Largely created by and for people who spend a lot of time online, “MS Paint artists” like Allie Brosh of Hyperbole and a Half, Sam Brown of Exploding Dog, Mark Leidner, Tracy Brannstrom, and Tao Lin create simple geometric humans and creatures with lines for hands, often adding titles or speech bubbles to humorous effect…