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“I hope you step on a LEGO” is a phrase often used as a retort in rage comics and reaction images to express one’s resentment towards someone who has done something unpleasant as to deserve punishment or ill-fortune, such as accidentally stepping on a LEGO brick.
The humorous association of stepping on a small lego brick in barefoot with severe pain began as early as in 2007 with various parenting blog posts and discussions, as mentioned in I am Mama, Frugal Village, Huffington Post and Yahoo Voice articles. It has been also reported as a commonly shared experience among parents with children or in childhood memories, according to various Yahoo Answer threads. The earliest known iteration of the phrase in rage comics can be found in a FFFFFUUUUUUUU rage comic posted via 4chan sometime in late 2009.
Its colloquial usage in the comments section of blog articles, videos and image posts became noticeable in 2011, after a screenshot of the phrase was posted by Tumblr blogger suriikufu on February 6th, 2011, receiving more than 60,000 notes. That same day, a Facebook fan page titled “I Hope You Step on a LEGO Brick, Barefoot” was launched, which has accumulated over 44,000 likes as of July 2012.
Throughout the latter half of 2011, a colorful variety of image macros, reaction images and tribute artworks featuring the phrase surfaced on Tumblr under the tag “I hope you step on a lego.”
In Rage Comics
The phrase also became closely associated with various rage comics as a reaction image conveying bitter resentment towards another character(s) portrayed in the same comic, examples of which can be found on a wide range of websites and image-sharing communities, from rage comic specialty blogs like Best Rage Comics, RageGenerator and RageStache to general internet humor sites Memebase, FunnyJunk and 9gag.
Huffington Post – LEGO Mania: 5 Ways to Prevent the Pain of Stepping on a LEGO Brick
Yahoo Voices – The Stay at Home Mom’s Survival Guide for Cranky Days