Creek Critic Volume III: View through a TikTok lens
TikTok has over 800 million active users worldwide. It’s such a cultural phenomenon that, recently, the leader of Disney+ quit his Disney job and took over as the CEO of TikTok. My kids are experts on the platform and continually churning out content and enjoying the musical musings of others.
Despite that overwhelming popularity, I’m admittedly late to the party. Perhaps that has something to do with the fact that I’ve been spending most free time enjoying our dock on Beresford Creek, captivated by the hustle and bustle during a nightly happy hour. In Vol. III of the “Creek Critic,” we’ll attempt to adjudicate several recent creek scenarios utilizing our ever-expanding vocabulary of TikTok nomenclature.
The word that is most commonly used in my house (and, sadly, often relating to me in some way) is “cringy,” which is defined by a certain online resource as “someone or something that makes you embarrassed to be a part of the human race.”
While on the creek recently, a father and his sons anchored on our shoreline. They proceeded to exit their craft and help themselves to several items from the creeks edge. That felt a bit cringy, but we contained our distaste given that it was clear that the kids were enjoying the adventure. After some further exploring, the uninvited visitors unveiled the coup de gras as they began lighting fireworks off from our land toward our house. When asked to please stop, the father responded by “throwing shade” (aka disrespecting someone verbally or nonverbally) and ultimately, begrudgingly, leaving the premises.
Creek Critic Says: Cringy. Two Thumbs Down. C’mon Man. Yuck. Bronx Cheer. I’m still not great at throwing shade myself but I’m working on it. Boo. Hiss.
There is clearly a sense of pride with watercraft ownership. Many of the folks on the creek have gorgeous vehicles adorned with clever monikers, powerful engines and state-of-the-art electronics. One such vehicle, a flashy new wave runner, entered the creek quickly one evening and slowed to an appropriate dock-passing speed.
Shortly thereafter another wave runner came behind it and it was clear that this duo was particularly proud of their vehicles. Sitting upright with tan bodies glistening and engines revving, we were clearing witnessing a quintessential “flex” – that is to knowingly flaunt and show off. It wasn’t until one of the wave runners accidently tangled itself and its owner in my fishing line that the flexing gave way to a touch more humility. Just a touch though.
Creek Critic Says: One Thumb Up. Would have been Two Thumbs Up were it not for the obvious ‘deflexing’ that resulted after tussling with that fishing line. The furious swatting and flaying had a clear ‘deflexifying’ effect. (Note: I did not refer to the governing bodies on whether ‘deflexing’ or ‘deflexifying’ are actual TikTok words but they seemed to neatly fit the occasion.)
In the TikTok world, the art of being “satisfying” is held in high esteem. From the bevy of “how to make slime” videos to time-lapse videos of making one’s bed, there are many approaches to achieving this Zen-like result. There is nothing quite as satisfying as watching a pod of dolphins navigate the creek as the sun sets over the orange-rippled water, softly blowing plumes of water into the air. Once in a great while, usually at a lower tide, they strand feed by herding schools of fish or shrimp onto the pluff mud and launching their bodies out of the water to eat. While there is a respectable level of satisfaction generated by TikTok classics like stacking pancakes in reverse order of size or color-sorting one’s sprinkles, I’d argue that the overwhelming feeling of connectedness to all things that is cultivated by watching dolphins in the creek is the zenith of satisfaction.
Creek Critic Says: Two Thumbs Up. Sooooo satisfying.
“OK Boomer” (a slang phrase used to deride a Baby Boomer who is trying too hard to be cool or understand current trends), we hope you enjoy the coming summer of fun on the creek. And while you are basking in your new-found hipness, please don’t forget to save us the aisle seat…er…creekside dock bench.