Wednesday, Dec. 07, 2011


Planking can be defined as the practice of being photographed while lying facedown in an unusual or dangerous place so the photo can be put on a social-networking website. It started as an Australian trend, but people were soon going prostrate the world over. Celebrities from pop sensation Justin Bieber to chef Gordon Ramsay started planking. Tourists in Thailand went so wild with their planking that the Thai government actually issued an edict against "nude planking in fish tanks." But planking was just the first of many social-media phenomena that got hot this year. After planking, there was coning, or being filmed while awkwardly grabbing a soft-serve upside down. There were owling (being photographed while perching like an owl in a strange place) and batting (the same but hanging upside down like a bat). There was horsemanning, a pose in which two people simulate a beheading. And there was even fridging: the practice of being photographed while as fully inside a refrigerator as possible. (Which all make planking look about as crazy as saying cheese.)