You’re likely familiar with this frustrating phenomenon: You wake up, brimming with enthusiasm over your plans to spend your entire day online, and you power up your sleeping computer. You visit your favorite websites, merrily clicking whatever links most entice you, but you soon realize you’ve made an irreversible mistake. You tried to open too many tabs. As a sense of dread builds within, you feel your keyboard get warmer and your labored fan kick into high gear. The circles on your tabs continue to revolve. Your computer is overloaded, and it slowly but steadily starts to freeze. And then, it buckles.
That’s the best way to describe precisely what I experienced upon seeing an incredibly rich image of sentient muscle Channing Tatum serenely smiling to himself as “reads” an empty children’s-book sleeve to an unengaged audience of stuffed mythical creatures and Barbies. My mind is the computer processor; my competing thoughts and reactions to the stimuli are all my browser’s tabs. Truly, what is there to say? Other than, of course, [resounding honk honk].
I can imagine you may have some questions. (No need to feel embarrassed. I did too.) Perhaps, What inspired this image? or Exactly what is he supposed to be dressed up as? or Is he okay???? Though Tatum admitted in the photo’s caption that “things got a little weird for me in quarantine,” this thirst trap actually serves as a promotional image for his forthcoming children’s book, The One and Only Sparkella, which he has dedicated to his 6-year-old daughter, Everly. Aw. Speaking of his creative process, he continues, “I locked myself in my daughter’s room & found my inner child. So this is what I created for my little girl. From what is, I guess, the little girl in me.” (Clearly, he’s no longer suffering from a lack of inspiration.)
But this is where I urge you to quiet the unwelcome questions about the image that have penetrated your mind; meditate on your nascent thoughts while your brain attempts to process them. Much like a himbo, this image is to be appreciated for its superficial beauty and energy — not the profundity of its message.