This Day In Internet History – December 6, 2004: Numa Numa Is Born

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On this day in 2004, a New Jersey man named Gary Brolsma procured for himself something we all long for: Immense fame simply for being a silly goof on the internet. But, like a wish upon a cursed monkey’s paw, it came with a price.

When Gary (or whoever got ahold of the video) pressed the upload button on Newgrounds in December of 2004, did he know that by doing so he would become a viral legend? Did he know that dancing and lip-syncing to the song “Dragostea din tei” by the Moldovan pop group O-Zone would make people freak out with laughter and inspire countless parody videos? Probably not. But he did it anyway. The man took a chance.

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This video, which has over 27 million views, is, as The New York Times puts it, earnest but painful.

A Brief History of Numa Numa

Gary Brolsma was 19 years old when the video hit. And it hit hard. In fewer than three months after its release, it had been viewed more than two million times on Newgrounds. Then it ballooned up to 18 million. From there, the video was copied and shared on countless websites. By November of 2006, Numa Numa was the second most-watched viral video of all time, with over 700 million views.

According to Brolsma, his mom woke him up one day when she discovered news vans from CBS, NBC and ABC parked outside their house. She didn’t know about the video, and thought her son had gotten himself into trouble. No, mom, your boy just went viral.

In a whirlwind of press coverage, Brolsma made appearances on ABC’s Good Morning America, NBC’s The Tonight Show, and VH1’s Best Week Ever. The Numa Numa video was ranked number 1 on VH1s Top 40 Internet Superstars.

But the attention got to be too much. Brolsma didn’t know how to deal with his unexpected launch to celebrity. The New York Times revealed that he was an “unwilling and embarrassed Web celebrity.” He canceled an appearance on NBC’s Today, in favor of isolating himself to seek refuge from fame. He stopped taking phone calls. He quietly sulked around his home.

He didn’t stay down forever.

A supportive story in The Believer made the case that the Numa Numa video “singlehandedly justifies the existence of webcams… It’s a movie of someone who is having the time of his life, wants to share his joy with everyone, and doesn’t care what anyone else thinks”.

The story goes on, “Everyone wanted to be the Numa Numa Guy—to feel that un-self-consciously self-conscious joy he felt in his body, flailing around in his chair and lip-synching a stupid pop song in a language he didn’t understand.

He may be shy, but there’s no question that Brolsma is an entertainer. His video made people laugh and forget their troubles for a while.

Time Goes On

Brolsma says he “wasn’t big on fame.” The attention got to be relentless. Still, he made the best of it.

In an interview with C-Net, he says his life essentially went back to normal after the fame died down. He has retained his small group of friends, and it’s thrilling when people stop him and ask for a picture. The marriage proposals are flattering, too.

Brolsma came back in September, 2006 with a professionally produced video, this time using a song written for him by Variety Beats.

New Numa 

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Then he teamed up with some other viral video stars for the “Numa Numa” 10-year reunion. 

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The man certainly knows how to milk it!

Parody Videos and Tributes

Numa Numa on South Park.

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I thought this was Britney Spears. It’s not.

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I don’t really know what this is but it has over 3 million views so who am I to judge?

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I hate this.

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Maybe don’t show this to your kids.

https://youtu.be/ncXkdeRRjiQ

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Speaking of kids.

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So that’s the story of Numa Numa, one of the first viral videos ever.

Let’s close it out on some solid advice from the Numa Numa man. “If you’re doing something and your intention is to be funny and you’re not having fun yourself, it’s not going to work out.”

Now let’s all get out there and dance our weird hearts out!

Chris Hemsworth Celebrates 10th Anniversary of Two “No-Names” Starring in Thor

Thor Anniversary Post
(Instagram/Chris Hemsworth)

It’s hard to believe that Chris Hemsworth was an “unknown actor” when he was cast as Thor a decade ago. He recently took to Instagram to celebrate the 10-year anniversary and throw a little shade at the poorly-aged article that questioned Marvel’s casting choices. Banking on two “no names” in Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston as Loki to carry the movie? What was Marvel thinking?!

“Thor” debuted in 2011 and Hemsworth shared a pic of him with Hiddleston at an early table read. He shared it saying “This year marks the 10th anniversary of THOR when two unknown lads were given the keys to the kingdom. It’s been a hell of a ride and we clearly haven’t aged a day.”

 

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A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth)

What’s funny is they both actually look *better* now (that’s what money and success can do to you), especially as Hemsworth gets ripped for the next Thor movie.

The second photo was the news report of their casting, calling them “no names” and questioning the move to hire “virtual unknowns” to carry the film, especially when people like Shia LaBoeuf and Josh Hartnett were interested.

Now that Hemsworth has been knocking it out of the park for a decade as Thor now, and with Hiddleston about to carry his own series on Disney+ (as well as stealing scenes throughout the Avengers movies as Loki) I think it’s safe to say Marvel made the right move by “rolling the dice.”

Unknown a decade ago, sure, but now they are two of the biggest stars in the MCU, and their stars are only getting brighter.

Bindi Irwin Shares Touching Artwork Depicting Late Dad Holding Her Daughter

Bindi Irwin shares family portrait which includes late dad
(Instagram/bindisueirwin)

Though your very first Mother’s Day is an occasion for celebration, for many, it’s intensely bittersweet. Becoming a parent yourself completely reframes the way you see your own parents, allowing you to understand and bond over things that were previously complete and total mysteries. For Bindi Irwin, the road to parenthood is a journey she’s shared publicly, but with baby Grace finally here and her first Mother’s Day in the books, Bindi couldn’t help but think about the person she desperately wishes she could celebrate with – her late dad, Steve Irwin.

 

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A post shared by Bindi Irwin (@bindisueirwin)

In addition to being Bindi’s dad, Steve Irwin was her hero and inspiration. Even today, her late dad’s legacy remains central to the way Bindi lives her life. Through their conservation work, both Bindi and her brother Robert pick up where their dad left off. During their biggest milestones, the family finds ways to make it feel as though Steve is there celebrating with them.

Without a doubt, Steve would be so incredibly proud of his growing family. They continue to prioritize both conservation and family, things that the late Crocodile Hunter held close to his heart. Though Steve wasn’t there to celebrate his daughter’s very first Mother’s day with her, Bindi found a way to share her special day with him in spirit.

Bindi commissioned a painting by Debb Oliver of The Monkey Brush, a touching work of art that she and her family will undoubtedly treasure. The photo Bindi shared on Instagram looks like a typical (albeit beautiful) family portrait, but with one special addition – a smiling Steve Irwin holding his very first granddaughter, tilting her slightly towards the viewer as if he’d just finished saying, “crikey, isn’t she a beauty?”

 

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A post shared by Bindi Irwin (@bindisueirwin)

The happy family is dressed in matching Australia Zoo khakis, making the portrait feel even more real. Had Steve been there to celebrate baby Grace with his family, this exact photo would almost certainly exist organically.

“I wish we could all be together but sometimes life has other plans,” Bindi captioned the photo. “To my beautiful daughter, always know that you are loved beyond description.”

Mom Adopts Puppy Without Paw To Help Daughter Without Hands Embrace Uniqueness

2-year-old without hands adopts puppy without paw
(Instagram/vanessamcleod_)

When kids are young, they haven’t yet developed a framework of how things are “supposed to” be. They approach things with curiosity as opposed to judgment, learning as much as they can about the world around them. It takes time for kids to notice things that differentiate them from their peers, and unfortunately, many kids start to view the things that make them unique as negatives. To preemptively instill confidence in her 2-year-old daughter, one mom decided to call for backpup.

Vanessa McLeod from Vancouver B.C. learned that her daughter would be born without hands when she was just 19 weeks pregnant. Though her doctor urged her to consider the quality of life for someone born without hands, McLeod knew that whatever obstacles her daughter faced, they would face them together. Now 2 years old, Ivy is happy and thriving.

“Her favorite thing to do is color and she just uses her toes to hold the markers so she has just learned to do things differently,” McLeod told CTV News.

 

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A post shared by Vanessa McLeod (@vanessamcleod_)

As Ivy grows older, McLeod knows it’s only a matter of time before Ivy starts questioning why she was born different. It’s inevitable, unfortunately – kids make cruel comments, whether they’re intentionally cruel or not. Those comments penetrate our own self-image, and sometimes, they completely overtake the way we see ourselves.

McLeod decided that she needed to give Ivy something solid to point to if she begins to question her own beauty and value, something to remind her that those who look different are just as beautiful as their peers. The determined mom settled on finding a dog for the family, one with a limb difference just like Ivy.

“You know you were born that way but different is beautiful,” she imagined telling her daughter, “and this puppy was also born that way and that is also a beautiful thing.”

Beginning what she anticipated would be a long and difficult search, McLeod set out to find the perfect pup for Ivy. In what felt like a magical turn of events, the search was over just as quickly as it started.

“But on April 6th, the day I initially posted… that very same day, a tiny little puppy was born IN OUR CITY with a little lucky fin,” McLeod wrote on Instagram. “If that’s not fate, I don’t know what is. It’s so very clear to us that she is meant to be part of our family.”

 

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A post shared by Vanessa McLeod (@vanessamcleod_)

As soon as Lucky is old enough to be adopted, she’ll begin her life with her new family. Lucky and Ivy have already formed an incredible bond, one that will only grow stronger once they’re together full time. Though the adorable pup bears the name, everyone involved is likely feeling pretty dang lucky themselves.

Muppets’ Statler and Waldorf Get What’s Coming To Them On SNL

SNL Security Muppets Sketch
(YouTube/SNL)

Most of the Muppets are really lovable. My opinions on Miss Piggy notwithstanding, most of Jim Henson’s puppets are not only funny, but they’re also endearing. The put-upon frog, the inept comic bear, the lovelorn pig, the manic drummer, the indecipherable chef, all have endearing qualities.

Except for two. Statler and Waldorf are just plain jerks. The two curmudgeons who sit on a balcony and mock the rest of the Muppets are hilarious, but they’re not exactly lovable. And if they existed in any universe outside of the Muppets, they’d probably be less celebrated.

Over the weekend, Saturday Night Live explored exactly what would happen if the two elderly hecklers ran into the wrong people.

Keegan-Michael Key, from Key and Peele, hosted the show, and in one memorable sketch, he and Kenan Thompson played a pair of security guys working the venue at the Muppets latest gig. When Statler and Waldorf started doing their thing, they were NOT here for it, and they let the hecklers know.

And then the hecklers messed around and found out. Hilariously.

Ashley Cain Posts Moving Tribute to Late Daughter

Cain Daughter Tribute
(Instagram/mrashleycain)

Former soccer star Ashley Cain took to Instagram to post a moving tribute to his late daughter. Cain’s daughter Azaylia passed away this spring from a rare form of leukemia at the young age of eight months. The 30-year-old MTV “The Challenge” star said he was finding it hard to look through her photos and videos, so he scrolled and posted the first one he landed on to honor what would’ve been her 9-month-birthday.

“What a beautiful video it was!” he wrote. “What a strong, clever, brave and beautiful little girl you were. My champion, my hero….MY INSPIRATION!”

The video is truly heartbreaking, as it’s a baby and her dad playing together. A baby and dad that should’ve had more time together.

A parent should never have to lose a child. It’s truly one of the most devastating things a person can ever experience. Cain has been vocal in his daughter’s diagnosis and passing and looks to keep her memory alive. Cain and Azaylia’s mother have said they are going to use the remaining money raised for her treatment to start a charity in her name.

“What we saw during our time fighting this monster has changed us forever and we will spend the rest of our lives spreading Azaylia’s message of hope and strength to all those who need it,” Cain and Safiyya Vorajee wrote on the GoFundMe pageGoFundMe page. “We will ensure she lives on until the day we are able to hold her again in paradise.”

Pediatric cancer is one of the cruelest diseases we have in this world, and hopefully, with advances in science and research, it can be one that’s ended in our lifetime. And Cain will be joining that fight in honor of his late daughter.

Loki Sneak Peek Gives Us More Owen Wilson

Loki Sneak Peek
(YouTube/Marvel)

Apparently, the MTV Movie Awards are still a thing, and they happened last night!

I couldn’t tell you who most of the presenters were, but I know Scarlett Johansson won a career award, Chadwick Boseman got the posthumous award the Oscars denied him, and WandaVision won for Best Show. There’s another MCU show coming soon – Loki arriving in early June – and in between awards, viewers were treated to a sneak peek.

In the short, one-minute clip, Owen Wilson introduces himself as Mobius and explains that time works differently at the TVA, the Time Variance Authority, where Loki is now a prisoner.

Check it out:

Tom Hiddleston recently gave an interview in which he spoke a bit about the show, and the character he is best known for portraying.

“I want to preserve the freshness of the show for when it emerges, but something to think about is the [show’s] logo, which seems to refresh and restore,” Hiddleston explained in a recent interview with Empire. “The font of how ‘Loki’ is spelled out seems to keep changing shape. Loki is the quintessential shapeshifter. His mercurial nature is that you don’t know whether, across the MCU, he’s a hero or a villain or an anti-hero. You don’t know whether you can trust him. He literally and physically changes shape into an Asgardian guard, or into Captain America repeatedly. Thor talks about how he could change into a snake.

“I think that shapeshifting logo might give you an idea that Loki, the show, is about identity, and about integrating the disparate fragments of the many selves that he can be, and perhaps the many selves that we are. I thought it was very exciting because I’ve always found Loki a very complex construct. Who is this character who can wear so many masks, and changes shape, and seems to change his external feeling on a sixpence?”

Sony Reveals New Midnight Black & Cosmic Red PS5 Controllers

PS5 Midnight Black Cosmic Red Controller Reveal Trailer
(YouTube/Playstation)

In a Playstation Blog announcement, Sony unveiled their brand new PS5 controllers and I have to say, I’m loving that classic black color scheme.

“Our goal is to always find designs that will surprise and entice our fans, and these new colors are the result of an extensive selection process,” says Leo Cardoso from PlayStation’s design team. “We wanted the new controller colors to complement each other, as well as the original DualSense wireless controller and PS5 console, so we designed the colors around the theme of ‘galaxy’ as it felt like a natural progression from the original PS5 and accessories designs.”

I don’t mind the white color scheme of the current PS5 controller, but I always feel like I’m staring at one of the Avengers time travel suits from Endgame.  It will be nice to change things up a bit.  If you were lucky enough to snag a PS5 console and need some extra controllers for the family, the Midnight Black DualSense will cost $69.99 US, and the Cosmic Red DualSense will be a bit more at $74.99 US.

The current release date for each of these controllers is set for June 11th, 2021 and you can pre-order from the Playstation website right now.  My birthday is on June 11th, so hopefully, my wife reads this article and takes a hint.

Father Figures: Believe It

“I had to share how amazing my husband has been becoming a first time dad. He keeps saying how he wishes he could’ve done more. But I need him to know he DID DO everything and more.

Our son Zac was born at 37 weeks on March 24th.

My husband (Alex) and I decided to induce that day, due to my diagnosis of hyperemesis gravidarum (ongoing for 8months), as well as hydronephrosis which we had been spending the past week in the hospital for.

This pregnancy was a living hell for both of us. We spent a total of about 30 days in the hospital during the pregnancy.

Alex spent the first 7 months of the pregnancy holding my hair with one hand and my sick bucket with the other. I became physically and mentally dependent on him to get through each day. He’s the one I wouldn’t have survived without.

Soon after our son, was born he was rushed to the NICU and I saw the life get sucked out of my husband’s face. He started blaming himself for not being able to take care of his family.

He dropped everything to be with Zac and me for the 13 days we were in the NICU. He has showed up everyday, every hour, for every feed, and we finally went home with our preemie baby who still has a lot of growing to do.

We never thought our life would come crashing down like this, but Zac and I wouldn’t have survived without Alex, and I just want my husband to know that and believe that.

He did everything right. He did everything in his power to keep us safe even though he thinks he failed to do it. There is nothing he could’ve done differently because he has been perfect and now our family is complete, something I am truly, truly grateful for. ”

– Aisha Dow

Want to share a story about fatherhood? Email [email protected]

The Rock Stops to Duet Maui’s Song With Father of Moana Fans

The Rock duets song from Moana with father of two young fans
(Facebook/Dwayne The Rock Johnson)

It’s no secret that wrestler, actor, and absolute tank of a human Dwayne Johnson loves every second of being a girl dad. The father of three revels in spending time with his daughters, sharing touching posts on social media, and frequently discussing the joys of fatherhood. It’s impossible to fully understand what it means to be a parent until you become one, and as a nod to the bond of parenthood, The Rock regularly takes the time to help out his fellow fathers.

As if his plate wasn’t full enough, The Rock made yet another one of his dreams come true in 2020 when he founded Teremana Tequila. The brand focuses on sustainability and responsible sourcing, and since The Rock puts 100% into everything he does, the Tequila was an immediate and astounding success.

While promoting his new brand in early 2020, The Rock met a dad who really struck a chord. In the video Johnson shared on Facebook, he’s approached by a man with a small but mighty message from his 4-year-old daughter.

“She wanted me to tell you that she is 4, her name is Hannah, she has a little brother named Lucas, and they love your song.”

“Hannah and Lucas – wow. Where’s your phone?” Johnson asks, his Dad signal activated.

The father of two explains that every night he sings “You’re Welcome,” Maui’s song from Moana, to his kids. Some people can’t stop ordering things they don’t need online, others may gamble too much, but Dwayne Johnson simply cannot resist taking time out of his busy days to make his fans smile – especially when those fans happen to be kids.

After a brief introduction to his new friend’s kids, The Rock begins to sing Maui’s song before pulling the overjoyed dad in to sing with him.

“There’s always ‘an understanding’ between fathers who will do anything to make their daughters happy,” The Rock wrote on Facebook.