University of Wisconsin senior Shane Linden is a man on a mission. That mission? To put a Culver’s on State Street. As his petition to bring cheesy goodness to campus continues to trend, The Badger Herald sat down with the man behind the memes at UW Meme County and UW-Madison Memes for Milk Chugging Teens to talk more about his creative process.
The following interview was edited for style and clarity
The Badger Herald: I understand you operate UW Madison’s premier meme page, UW Meme county. How long have you been operating it?
Shane Linden: That’s been going on since last August, so almost exactly a year now.
BH: Why did you make it?
I liked so many meme pages on Facebook, that it was a bit obscene. I thought that there needs to be some good coming out of this, this has to be productive somehow. I gained all this knowledge from looking at memes that I figured I could start making my own.
BH: A lot of meme knowledge?
SL: I don’t know if you know what it’s like, but when your whole feed is just memes, you figure you can start doing something about it.
BH: Do you prefer to make the memes or do you get them from other sources?
SL: Over the life of the page I’d say about 75 percent have been mine. A lot of people would give me suggestions or send me memes, so I created the Facebook group, UW Madison Memes for Milk Chugging Teens. It’s a group, not a page, so people can share and get credit for their own content.
BH: Is there any type of content you generally shy away from on the UW Meme County page?
SL: I generally shy away from political stuff, my freshmen year there was a page called UW Madison Confessions run by a very controversial figure called David Hookstead. It started out as a funny page for memes and similar content but it got increasingly more political. Seeing that happen to the page was dismaying for my friends and me. It started about memes and fun, then it got political, which turned me off to having partisanship in pages that should be for fun.
BH: Do you have advice for any aspiring “memers” out there?
SL: Just make memes, whatever it is. Original content is king as long as its original, post it or make your own page whatever you want. The more memes the better
BH: Switching gears to your Culver’s petition here, When you made it, did you expect it to go as viral as it did?
SL: That was the hope, it was always the hope, maybe not this viral this quickly. It’s good to see people latching on to the idea.
BH: Because of the lack of vacant properties on state street currently, is there any specific restaurant or shop you want on the chopping block?
SL: This is funny, my friend literally asked me this last night. The Wendy’s location that just opened up isn’t really that nice. What I want to see is Culver’s take advantage of the architecture and create something new. I was thinking that Colectivo, I love the way it looks, and Culver’s could take advantage of that space. There are enough coffee shops anyway.
BH: Great point, favorite thing on the Culver’s menu?
SL: I used to really love the Cheese Curds, but now they make me sick for some reason. I still eat them, don’t get me wrong, now I just have to use the bathroom after I do, which speaks to how good they are.
BH: Last question, if you had to make a college-themed custard flavor what would you call it and what would it taste like?
SL: College themed custard flavor? I am a huge PBR fan, so I’d probably make a PBR custard flavor.
BH: I could see it
SL: I doubt you’d wanna eat it though.