My first account on #ClassicTFM was not SharkWeekTFM. As I’m finishing up this installment I’m discovering it wasn’t even my second. I just decided to pose as a human and blend in. Didn’t want to make waves. None of my comments or jokes really landed especially well. It was the age of pun names. I tried to do a pun on “I Think Therefore I Am/Frat” because it’s a common phrase people know and if you weigh your options then you would “obviously” decide that it’s a good idea to go Greek. ThinkThereforeFRAT was all that fit. I tried to keep it classy. It was bad. I didn’t have the heart to be especially rude or harsh to anyone and no one wanted a philosophically twisted joke or a classy commentary. Although I was able to get 7 wall posts and a picture up by the end of that career and only one or two would make the new Fail Fridays.
The first classic Fail Friday (https://archive.totalfratmove.com/fail-friday-original/) was posted way back in February of 2011 (yup, it’s the 10 year anniversary of Fail Friday this month). It was only 5 wall submissions hoping to be published as real TFMs and 1 video they found. As the name suggests, these submissions just weren’t up to snuff. One of them was:
I’m a host at Chili’s. I was fired today because I gave my brothers unauthorized discounts on queso. TFM.
No wonder you got a bid. Wow. “This mother fucker is a host at Chili’s? BID! BID! BID!” That’s how your bottom-tier bid night went.
Several of the subsequent Fail Fridays also had appearances by the Chili’s Guy who was, eventually, just users trying to come up with Fail Friday worthy sounding submissions.
Washing windows in my store, then having my manager see me and ask me to stop because, “That is women’s work.” TFM.
This has to be the guy from two weeks ago who worked at Chili’s. Looks like he got a new FaF job. Fuck yeah! Window washing! I hate you.
And later, clearly a joker:
I reminded the manager at Chili’s who my father was and he decided to give me my job back. TFM.
OUR BOY IS MAKING A COMEBACK. Back in the saddle.
Eventually an account named The_Chilis_Guy appeared and the game was changed. Wouldn’t be surprised if it was that Missouri guy. He was a character. He commented in character most of the time and it soon became the age of joke and parody accounts. There were accounts for people being famous people or famous people’s moms or just coming up with a bit of some kind and sticking with it.
You can probably see where this is going.
I was reading some particularly good articles, probably Fail Friday too and funny comments one day thinking if I should make a joke account for myself. But what would my bit be? A commercial for Shark Week on Discovery Channel came on while I was thinking and I was like, “I’m a shark! That should be my thing!” and that was that. I knew what my character would be. But what about my bit, my joke, my thing?
I figured out my bit would be based on something I’d later see on Shark Week. It was something they seem to say on every basic shark documentary JUST IN CASE THE AUDIENCE DIDN’T ALREADY KNOW.
“Many people think sharks are mindless killing machines. But actually they have finely tuned senses and don’t attack everything they come in contact with.” And that’s how they seem to teach you anything about sharks, or at least it seemed that way that week. “Many people think sharks… But actually they…” As if anything scientific having to do with sharks is a complete 180 from EVERYTHING pop culture has EVER said about sharks.
Anyway, I would look at whatever the TFM or article was about and come up with a comment in the same genre or similar idea: “Many people think sharks (something negative about sharks), but actually they (something frat, or modern that sharks have achieved).
I went home with a girl from the Catholic College, made her scream “oh God!” all night long. TFM
Comment: Many people think sharks are totally atheist. But actually they subscribe to many varied “ideas” (because people kill and die for “beliefs”).
For a while I did not deviate from this formula at all. I didn’t respond to replies. I didn’t give my opinions on anything. I just gave my #SharkFacts. People didn’t understand then they were kind of annoyed but then they just appreciated the commitment and eventually people seemed to enjoy that some of them were actually really good, and/or that the character that I was building for “sharks” was a really powerful, frat, didn’t take no shit, but was also the upstanding and caring type. And it was just silly. Who doesn’t like that?
In the same place you could submit your TFM you could just type up a whole article and they’d publish it if it was any good so there were pieces from more than just the people that worked for the site. That’s how I eventually had 7 articles and 1 interview published just as a member of a commenting and contributing community…
Stay Tuned for #ClassicTFM, A History Pt 3
In doing research for this piece I found some interesting things. If you think about it, Fail Friday was more prestigious(?) than the Wall; it bumped up to 10 fails a week but still, compare that to a whole week’s worth of wall posts. And Fail Friday was very popular and universally enjoyed. It was clear some people besides The Chilis Guy were trying to get their joke onto Fail Friday. I found where I even got one of my own on one week that I forgot all about, inspired from when I was premed at one point.
Studying to be an abortion doctor so I can meet sluts who don’t want kids any more than I do. TFM.
Hilariously, this came from a Methodist school.
I now remember thinking “Ok if I say ‘abortion doctor’ it’ll make it sound really uneducated and more Fail Friday-y” I wasn’t ever studying to be one specifically, though. Funny enough, I only came upon this while searching for different Chilis Guy posts and, and I might not have recognized it if it weren’t for the state and the school reference but with both included, I was certain.
BONUS Bonus Round!
Oh shit, I’m also seeing where I commented using a troll account I forgot about. “MightBePike” (because people shat on Pike) where I did claim the post after someone said they thought it should have made the real wall. Get it “MIGHT” be Pike? ‘Cause I’m NOT! I might be a Pike, but I might NOT be. They thought “yeah it is Faf but he saw it came from a Pike so he put it on Fail Friday.” Apparently I also tried to get another one on Fail Friday before that but it made the real Wall instead. “Chili’s Pledge has to get a Chili’s themed post on every Fail Friday or else we make him chug queso. TFM” Understandably the comments were pretty critical especially with it coming from MightBePike “Chugging queso sounds delicious!” Oh well.
Again, stay tuned for Part 3 coming soon.