kermit the frog geesturing broadly

Gestures Broadly at Everything

Updated Jul 30, 2020 at 05:49AM EDT by andcallmeshirley.

Added Jul 29, 2020 at 11:16AM EDT by Matt.

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Gestures Broadly at Everything, also known as Gestures Wildly at Everything or Gestures at Everything, is a phrase used to express feelings overwhelming frustration toward numerous problems. Gaining popularity on Twitter in July 2016, the phrase evokes the physical movement of flailing one's arms around a space and pointing to the problems.


Variations of the meme date back as early as 2011. The earliest known variant of the meme showcasing a negative situation appeared on Twitter[1] on May 8th, 2011. That day, Twitter user @shotgunwinkie tweeted, "This bullshit. -gestures around at everything, including the pile of now actually dead zombies-" (shown below, left). Yet, examples[2] of the phrase used in the positive appear earlier that year (shown below, right).

Tallahassee @shotguntwinkie Replying to @GeekyAriel @GeekyAriel This b-------. -gestures around at everything, including the pile of now actually dead zombies- 9:35 AM · May 8, 2011 · Twitter Web Client Rene Engström @reneengstrom · Jan 24, 2011 There is no answer for "where do you get your ideas from?" or "how do you succeed in webcomics"? Everyone's path is different. 27 3 That One Guy @SaneCharlie · Jan 24, 2011 @reneengstrom Personally I just say 'Everywhere!' and gesture wildly at everything.


Over the next few years, Twitter users continued to use variants of the expression, such as "gestures at everything" (examples below).

Man's best trend @wordymcwriter Replying to @Alrart @AnonPower l've always been violent & angry. I try not to let that get in the way of the fact none of this *gestures at everything* matters. 1:01 PM · Jan 18, 2012 · Twitter Web Client > Amanda B @amandajpanda I don't drink enough for this. *gestures at everything* 8:04 AM · Oct 23, 2015 · Twitter for iPhone

On July 12th, 2016, the phrase reached its first major point of spread with a tweet[3] by user @SweetestCyanide. The tweet reads, I'm not saying that David Bowie was holding the fabric of the universe together, but *gestures broadly at everything*." The post received more than 12,000 likes and 9,100 likes in less than five years (shown below).

Katie Loewy : @SweetestCyanide I'm not saying that David Bowie was holding the fabric of the universe together, but *gestures broadly at everything* 4:47 AM · Jul 12, 2016 · Twitter for Android

Following the tweet, the expression grew in public usage on Twitter. For example, on May 10th, 2018, Twitter[4] user @RobertONeill31 tweeted the phrase in response to an NBC News tweet that reads, "Major depression is on the rise among everyone, new data shows." The post received more than 89,000 likes and 28,000 retweets in less than three years (shown below, left). This version of the meme also spread to Facebook [5] and iFunny,[6]

Variations of the meme also grew in popularity. On June 20th, 2018, Twitter[7] user @TakedownMRAs tweeted, "Men's Rights Activists: "MEN BUILT THIS SOCIETY!" Me: *gestures broadly to the garbage fire we all live in*." The tweet received more than 1,600 likes and 450 comments in less than three years (shown below, right).

e Can Do TakedownMRAS @TakedownMRAS Men's Rights Activists: "MEN BUILT THIS SOCIETY!" Me: *gestures broadly to the garbage fire we all live in* 4:33 AM · Jun 20, 2018 · Twitter for Android

On July 27th, 2020, the website Slate[8] published a history of the meme. Speaking with Twitter user @SweetestCyanide, who they credit with popularizing the meme, the article states:

It was a phrase whose time had come. In the days after Loewy’s tweet, Prince fans quickly theorized that he had also contributed to the health of the universe, and fans of other recently deceased celebrities from Harambe to Dr. Sebi chimed in. Then, in November, usage spiked for some reason. By the time the novel coronavirus turned the outside world into something we could only gesture broadly at, having a way to refer to the cavalcade of disaster without thinking too hard about the implications of any individual world-ender was the only way to stay psychologically healthy.

Of the meme, @SweetestCyanide says, "It’s a feeling we’ve become desensitized to in the intervening years, as things have continued to deteriorate, but that summer really felt like the start of it all."

Various Examples

Cory Doctorow #BLM @doctorow Gestures broadly at everything h/t Fipi Lele I'M NOT SAXING THAT DAVID BOWIE WAS HOL DIN6 THE FABRIC OF THE UNIVERSE TO6ETHER, BUT... GESTURES BROADLY AT EVERKTHING 5:01 AM · Jul 23, 2016 · Buffer > Kristen Page-Kirby @kpagekirby I used to regularly do triathlons, but when got a new job with a long commute about a year ago, my workouts ground to a halt. Then with [gestures at everything] I couldn't bring myself to do anything. Today I got up and power walked a whole mile. It's something. Go Kristen. 6:27 AM · Jul 29, 2020 · Twitter for iPhone James Burch @JamesBurch_Acts *Gestures at everything* Backdoor Company @DoorHinge9 · 20h Why aren't people attracted to you? Be honest. Show this thread 11:06 PM · Jul 28, 2020 · Twitter for iPhone >
Autistic Lesbian Orpheus, @history_lesbian IM HONESTLY JUST SO SICK OF THIS [gestures at everything in the whole world] 8:20 AM · Oct 30, 2015 · Twitter Web Client June O'Hara @juneohara65 Says to cat, "Well, this is another fine mess you've gotten us into." *gestures at everything 1:21 PM · Nov 7, 2015 · Twitter Web Client Sardonic Tart @SardonicTart Kids: Mom, can we go to the circus? Me: LOL what do think this is? *gestures at everything around them* 11:05 AM · Feb 27, 2016 · Twitter for Android

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