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Super Cool Ski Instructor is an advice animal image macro series featuring a picture of the ski instructor Thumper from the animated sitcom South Park. The macros are accompanied by captions advising against risky or impetuous behaviors followed by the warning “you’re gonna have a bad time.”
The character first appeared in the South Park episode titled “Asspen”, which takes place at a ski resort in Aspen, Colorado. In the episode, Stan, Cartman, Kyle and Butters are given ski lessons by an instructor named Thumper who repeatedly warns about dangerous skiing practices saying “you’re gonna have a bad time.” The episode aired on March 20th, 2002.
On February 14th, 2012, the first “Super Cool Ski Instructor” image macro was uploaded to Quickmeme with the caption “If you’re trying to hit the front page without tits or a cat / you’re gonna have a bad time.” The same day, it was posted to the /r/adviceanimals subreddit accumulating over 3,700 up votes within six weeks.
Precursor: Captain Hindsight
The character of “Super Cool Ski Instructor” can be largely seen as the foresighted counterpart of Captain Hindsight, yet another advice animal meme inspired by the eponymous character that appeared in an episode of South Park titled “Coon 2: Hindsight,” which aired on October 27th, 2010. Both in the episode and the image macro series, Captain Hindsight is portrayed as an ill-timing preacher who lectures others on what could’ve been done differently to prevent a certain predicament or a negative situation that had already unfolded.
Few image macros were posted to Reddit for the rest of February, but the meme saw a resurgence on March 19th when over 40 submissions were posted in two days. On March 21st, 2012, Redditor lulzKat submitted an image macro to the /r/adviceanimals subreddit featuring the South Park character Mr. Mackey with the caption “Beating the ski instructor meme into the ground is bad / M’Kay.” The post received over 650 upvotes in less than a week.
Later that day, a Bad Joke Eel Ski Instructor image macro reached the front page of Reddit with the caption “If you break your watch / you’re gonna have a bad time”, which received over 15,400 up votes within a week.
As of March 28th, 2012, the Quickmeme page accumulated over 2,100 submissions and a Facebook page for “Thumper the Super Cool Ski Instructor” received 50 likes.