The Bad, the Good, the Weird, the Geeky and the Funny…
But first, the back story.
Before George and I started dating, we were friends for about a month. At the time, we had no idea we would end up getting married. When we were just friends, we would hang out like two total bros. Drinking wine together, frequenting fancy restaurants, talking all night… you know, bro stuff. Until one day, as a testament to our budding bromance, George decided to let me in on a secret.
Lara, I’m going to show you some of the websites men use that most women have absolutely no idea about…
When George showed me these websites, it was true. I had never seen or heard of them before. It was like being invited into a secret sect, or a fraternity brotherhood, which I’m glad never really happened because pretty soon after I told all my girlfriends.
I asked them if they’d ever heard about any of these websites. No, they told me. I couldn’t wait to show them. And just as I was about to flip open my laptop and welcome them into this secret circle I’d just uncovered, they stopped me. No, they said, please don’t show us.
I didn’t understand. No one ever says no to the super secret cult. But why? I asked. You have to tell me why. Now it was me who felt like I was on the outside. I had to know. It’s simple, they answered. We have no interest in that stuff.
This made absolutely no sense to me. No interest was not possible. It must have been something I did or said. A common phrase popped into my head. It’s not what you said, but how you said it. When I don’t see eye to eye with someone, this phrase is often the reason.
After thinking about it a while longer, I realized it was indeed my fault. I didn’t present it right. I said too much, too fast, I should have eased them into it. Right from the start, I went into describing the absolute worst website George showed me called 4Chan, a bit like I’m doing again now… 😉
1. The Bad
4chan /b/ – Random is commonly described as ‘the armpit of the internet’ where the most depraved hang out and post anonymously and without accountability. Common threads include ‘dumping’ of naked photos of ex-girlfriends as well as all sorts of vile and vulgar imagery I dare not detail.
It’s where you’d go to find the leaked celebrity photos known as ‘the fappening’. It’s generally got a lot of nudity, ranging from pleasant to grotesque, as well as violence. Leaked footage from prison fights and even war zones. But it also has interesting true stories, funny gifs and joke threads.
I get it, not everyone’s cup of tea. But there’s more, so keep reading!
2. The Good
The antithesis of 4chan is mainstream forum Reddit, known as the ‘front page of the Internet’. It’s an online forum that has pretty much everything and a huge following: 250 million users.
There are also lots of sub-reddits for different interests, from broad topics like politics to narrow ones like a specific TV show. As the website grew, however, some 4chan-like sub-reddits have emerged, but unless you’re deliberately trying to access them, you’re unlikely to be offended by this website. Barack Obama uses it, so it’s safe.
3. The Weird
My favourite website that George showed me is actually yonkis.com. It’s a Spanish website that uploads all sorts of funny and random videos from all over the world. It’s a bit like an adult youtube…
Yes, there is some nudity and weird porn-like material, but if you ignore the sidebars, there are also hilariously drunk people from different countries doing different stupid things. All kinds of pranks, insane parkour, amazing movie and video game trailers, as well as other awesome stuff.
4. The Geeky
It’s no coincidence that 4chan originated as an anime forum, which it still is although it’s arguably since grown into something else. There are a lot of weird hardcore anime fans out there looking for like-minded people. But don’t let that put you off.
Anime is actually a fantastic genre with amazing graphics and storylines. Famous ones include Deathnote, Hunter x Hunter and Attack on Titan. At Crunchyroll, you can stream most anime in HD and with English subtitles. It’s also one of the few legal anime streaming websites, where you can pay for an ad-free version with some of the proceeds going back to the creators and studios.
George’s online comic picks aren’t your typical Marvel or DC Comics. He loves these too, but has some other interesting (and way geekier) suggestions for you to discover.
First up, check out XKCD, a funny and clever comic created by Nasa scientist Randall Munroe featuring stick figures. He is also the author of the best-selling book What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions. His website and book have been described as nerd royalty. Irresistible, right?
A similarly geeky comic website is Phdcomics, which looks to find the humour in academia. Dr. McNinja is another online comic book featuring Dr. McNinja, who is quite literally a doctor and a ninja with urges to both heal and kill. There is even a Dr. McNinja card game!
(FYI George has the book, the card game, and probably also the Tshirt.)
5. The Funny
Finally, email chain websites. Yup, that’s a thing. George’s favourites are E-mails from an asshole (check out the Angry Fish Tank Guy thread) and David Thorne’s website, who became famous for his attempts to pay an overdue bill with a drawing of a seven-legged spider.
And that’s it! Thanks to George for sharing his favourite corners of the internet.