A meme is an idea that spreads autonomously through social groups. Memes are more than just a community’s inside jokes; they can help articulate a widely felt feeling, catalyze social change, inform the development and evolution of a culture, and more. Creating and spreading memes have been an important part of rolequeer culture since its inception and continue to be used often for the purposes of satirizing and critiquing the overculture. Mimesis is the quality of memetic replication. Rolequeers generally prioritize mimetics over attribution:
I ruptured and reconstituted myself an intellisexual cyborg who thrived on the orgiastic exchange of conceptions rather than bodily fluids, a kind of idea-sex in which hyperlinks are sex toys. (Probably strap-ons.) My persona is now so thoroughly projected on the thin surface of cyberspace that I feel offering you this digitized dossier has cost me the depth of my life. Yet it has also rewarded me with a kind of awkward attractiveness I could not attain when decoupled from my electronic prosthetics.
By the same reasoning, it is also no accident that I am a brutal critic of the BDSM Scene at this moment in history, nor that I would critique it using the lore of radical transparency, diversity, and accessibility—all gleaned from techno-privileged open sources. For all intents and purposes, I am the illegitimate offspring of The Scene and The State at a time when the literary telepathic non-magic of the Internet threatens them both. And, still borrowing from Haraway, “illegitimate offspring are often exceedingly unfaithful to their origins. Their fathers, after all, are inessential.”
Know your rolequeer meme¶
- Douchey Dom
- The Douchey Dom meme was coined by Maymay as a way to collect statements made by people who identified as dominants who sound like obvious rapists. Many entries exposed common gaslighting techniques used by dominants and similarities between abusive BDSMers and ‘standard’ abuse.
- Spicy Vanilla
- BDSM’ers have tried to turn vanilla sex into something one might almost call a slur, a synonym for uncool conservative quiet-sex-with-the-lights-off-for-three-minutes establishment sex. Quite a few rolequeers have responded by celebrating uncoolness, celebrating vanilla and celebrating sex that is closer to vanilla than to BDSM. The idea being: if BDSMers try to create an us and them in which vanilla’s are the uncool other that no one wants to be, then one way to break that binary wide open is to love all the ways and moments in which we are vanilla.
The Spicy Vanilla meme was coined by notfuckingcishet and consists of voices from people who are either vanilla but far from boring and people who are kinky but considered ‘vanilla’ by BDSMers for not wanting typical BDSM acts. It also provided one more possible way to identify outside the BDSM-Vanilla binary.
Many entries mock the pretentiousness of BDSMers who thing their deviant sex makes them cool, and the ridiculousness of arguing that every kind of sex without a power inequality is boring and uncreative.
- Spicy Vanilla Molly Weasley
- A meme based in Harry Potter fandom that riffs on the Spicy Vanilla meme in which Molly Weasley disapprovingly scolds Dominant characters from 50 Shades of Grey and shows care and concern for its submissive-positioned characters.