Illustration courtesy of the Pioneer Log Archives

LC students use social media to satirize campus culture

Going to college during the golden age of social media has created an entirely different and unique social experience. Instead of bonding and sharing ideas with other students only in person, we can do so from the tap of a device. 

The fact that classes at Lewis & Clark returned to Zoom for the beginning of the semester has only pushed more students to revel in their shared experiences online. New Instagram accounts giving humorous commentary of various aspects of the school have been popping up left and right, mingling with more established ones. They give a semblance of a unified experience in an isolating time.

These Instagram accounts are all student-created and run, and they make it clear that they are unaffiliated with the school administration. They can be divided into three subcategories: memes, cursed images and text-based posts, with some overlap. 

Although there are multiple general meme accounts, such as @memes4lewisandclark and @lewisandclarkcollegememes, one of the most prominent meme accounts is @thepioofficial. I am sure many of us have felt wild panic as we run to catch the Pioneer Express Shuttle as it starts to depart. This account taps into these feelings and portrays them in iconic memes that encapsulate the bus experience, some of which have even debuted as stickers which the Associated Student Body distributed. One popular sticker you may have seen stuck on laptops features an inverted color picture of the Pio with the text, “Evil Pio be like: I am leaving.”

Cursed images are a more chaotic form of humor, funny due to their odd nature. Again, there is an account for general LC cursed images, but @cursedbonimages provides more specific content. It is a reliable source for painfully funny content. This account posts images of silly, weird or even downright alarming things (such as a hair in a pan of eggs) found in Fields Dining Hall as light mockery of the food quality. 

What sets them apart, though, are their captions. Without any text in the image, captions are vital for context. While other accounts simply state the location in which the photo was taken, this one often adds short, but punchy lines that add emphasis, such as an image of a cup on the ground captioned “troom fry sauce on da curb.”

Text-based posts are a more miscellaneous category. One of these accounts is @justthebontip, which is just getting off the ground but provides helpful hacks for dining, such as unfolding to-go boxes to make a plate. There is also@humansoflewisandclark, inspired by the wildly popular @humansofnewyork account, which features different students who discuss interests, challenges and stories. These accounts are a great way to connect with others and learn new things, whether it is how to make quick Bon recipes or what other students think about life at LC.

In the realm of funny textual accounts, there is @lcaffirmations, a great source for some motivation and reiteration of shared struggles. However, I think that the best account is  @over_heard_lc. With 1,079 followers, the highest following of any of the mentioned accounts, it is clearly widely popular and it has 99 posts — a respectable number that shows their dedication. 

The basis of this account is to post funny things students have been overheard saying. Anyone can submit via direct message, so do not be afraid to throw your eavesdropping tidbits into the ring. They also post missed connections, similar to the Lewis & Clark Missed Connections page on Facebook. This account is great for finding consistently funny, relatable and well-organized content.

Oftentimes, the people behind these accounts are shrouded in mystery. However, @over_heard_lc, who preferred to remain anonymous, was willing to give a sneak peak behind the scenes.

“People say the most hilarious things and see absolutely no irony in what they’re saying,” the creator said.

One example of this is their post which states, “Sunday would work better for me, I’m doing shrooms tomorrow.” According to the creator, LC quite often reflects the stereotypes associated with liberal arts colleges. 

Whatever kind of humor or type of content you enjoy, you will probably find it on one of these ingenious accounts. Even a simple thing like a college-specific meme page can demonstrate how adaptable students are to changing circumstances and how even when confined to dorms, they find ways to share commonalities. 

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