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Too Cringe For New York, Too Based For LA refers to a catchphrase and phrasal template that was popularized by a bumper sticker and hoodie that were made with its likeness featuring the slang terms based and cringe. Starting in 2021 and going into early 2022, image macros of the products became exploitables, re-edited by meme creators who added a third line to the phrase, inserting a reference to a third city or location that's appropriate for the meme maker.
On June 18th, 2022, Twitter user and graphic designer Dylan Ousley, @dyloanousley, posted a tweet that attached an image of his desk covered in bumper stickers that read, "Too Cringe For New York, Too Based For LA," in green lettering. He captioned the image, "DM for free sticker lmao," and received 30 likes in eight months (shown below).
Dylan Ousley then posted an image of a singular bumper sticker to his Instagram Story sometime in July 2021. It was screenshotted and then reposted on July 5th by the Instagram account horsegirlupdates, who, over the course of seven months, received roughly 1,200 likes (shown below, left). The next day, on July 6th, Instagram account providencellectuals exploited the image, adding in a third line reading, "But I fit in perfectly in Providence," earning over 50 likes in seven months, being the first one to make a re-edit online (shown below, right).
Sometime in August 2021, Twitter user raihan_ posted an image of his car's bumper to his private Instagram account. He had the "Too Cringe For New York, Too Based For LA" bumper sticker on it. It was then screenshotted and reposted on August 31st, 2021 by the Instagram account teflon_musk_after_dusk who received roughly 1,300 likes over the course of six months (shown below, left). On September 1st, it was reposted to Twitter by the account i_zzzzzz, also known as Brooks Otterdale, who captioned it, "I need to get this bumper sticker and drive around Canada with it," earning roughly 1,700 likes in six months (shown below, right).
Additionally, on September 8th, raihan_ noticed that the image of his car was going viral and minted the image as an NFT on Foundation. In the description of the NFT, he stated that he put it on his private Instagram and that Dylan Ousley gave it to him as a birthday gift.
"Too Cringe For New York, Too Based For LA" Hoodie
On February 16th, 2022, the Depop clothing brand OGBFF, also known as Original Best Friend, dropped a neon hoodie with, "Too Cringe For New York, Too Based For LA," written on it to their website. They started posting TikToks with it to their account on February 14th, earning roughly 2,400 plays for the first video (shown below, left) and roughly 8,000 plays for the second video (shown below, right).
On March 8th, 2022, the Instagram account dopesoulnation reposted the hoodie's product image from the company's website, earning roughly 9,400 likes in two weeks (shown below).
Later in the day on March 8th, Instagram account shitfluencerr created the first known re-edited version of the hoodie, adding in a third line that read, "just delusional enough for Florida," earning over 220 likes in two weeks (shown below, left). Later on in March 2022, the exploitable trend spread to Twitter. For instance, on March 16th, Twitter user Pepto_abysmal69 posted a version of the hoodie that added a third line reading, "just delusional enough for Pittsburgh," earning roughly 18,500 likes in five days (shown below, right).
More versions of the hoodie percolated across social media going into 2022. Additionally, on March 20th, 2022, the Instagram account of OGBFF acknowledged their hoodie becoming a meme, posting a carousel post that included multiple versions of the meme, gaining roughly 1,500 likes in less than a day.
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