Who Let the Dogs Out: Linguistic and Cultural Analysis of A Certain Class of Canine Photogravure Upon the Internet


As a decentralized locus to content creation and protean framework for aggregated cultural projection (at least in its post-structuralist reified construct, ignoring Farque’s updated interjections), the Internet — or the “internets” as it is often addressed by its most loyal participants — gives birth to a wide range of linguistic fragments that often come together under their own internal philological logic. Although this author understands the necessity of counteracting the perspective bias of luminational foundation outlined in Gibbner 1987, the following essay employs photogravuric evidence or at least its contemporary simulacrum to show the evolution of linguistic structures operating the online meme production praxis.

Now that we have scared away or over-impressed the basic reader, we can reclaim our use of the standard vernacular and get to the pictures. Let’s go!

Fig. 1 – A dog.

Apparently starting in the Some Ghastly Thing forums, netizens have taken up the practice of writing words upon dog pictures. For whatever reason, cats do not make the cut — or the laugh. These dogs often speak in intentionally incorrect English — [sic]ism as first defined in Wandaroff 2004. The specimen above is interesting: the “hoth base” is a reference to the second film in the Star Wars series: Episode V. But note the representative use of the form — I am in your (blank), (blank) your (blank). What’s odd here is that the dog — who apparently is mentally impaired due to being a dog — uses the correct form for “your” before then stumbling upon the “cooler” degenerate form “ur” in the second half of the sentence. We posit this innovation as deferred degeneration. To be honest, I am not convinced that a dog of this breed would understand what “d00dz” are, especially seeing that Great Pyrenees are known to have trouble distinguishing an “O” (the letter) with the zero “0” (the number), making this an imperfect example of the genre.

Fig. 2 – Three dogs.

This whole sentence may be a typo. I am not sure why young people would immediately refer to three dogs as “Bel [sic] Biv Devoe.” Note the misuse of grammar: “R” being “are.” One dog is wearing clothes, which to this subjective eye, does remind the viewer of Michael Bivins. Not to say he looks like a dog, but I think I remember him wearing that shirt. I do not exactly understand what is going on here, but I do believe that is the point.

Fig. 3 – A dog.

I believe “Invisible Saddle” is the name of a popular comic book, but more importantly, the dog does indeed look like he could be wearing an invisible saddle. Quite humorous!

Marxy wrote a lot of essays back on his old site Néomarxisme. This is one of them.

6 Responses

  1. mg Says:

    RE: “For whatever reason, cats do not make the cut – or the laugh.”

    i have actually seen many more of these images featuring found cat images than dogs. here is a blog that has an extensive collection http://www.icanhascheezburger.com/

  2. Fabian Says:

    Indeed, I think the cat pictures are the far more popular variety. For a really (and I mean *REALLY*) extensive collection of such cat pictures go to:


    I’m not sure, but I think the whole “invisible ” got started with this one:


  3. marxy Says:

    Wow – Trevor really killed all our comments. What a bummer.

  4. carolalotta Says:

    i very much expected Rory to commment on this.
    where is he when his expertise is needed?

  5. carolalotta Says:

    i very much expected Rory to comment on this.
    where is he when his expertise is needed?

  6. clh Says:

    sorry… i doubled and tripled again.

    still waiting for rory to commmmmmmmmmment