Policeman finds 20-year-old photo turned into a meme
"I'M THE subject of a meme from 20 years ago."
This is the statement made by Senior Constable David Tramacchi after he was given a copy of last week's NewsMail.
Sen-Const Tramacchi, who grew up in Bundaberg and now lives in Brisbane, was intrigued to see the 8cm x 8cm blast from his past printed in the meme section of last Wednesday's paper.
A meme is defined as an image, video, piece of text, etc, typically humorous in nature, that is copied and spread rapidly by internet users, often with slight variations.
This meme shows a young man scouring the shelves of a video store, searching for a VHS stashed behind a cover available to be rented.
The caption of the meme says: "My kids will never know that awful feeling of realising there's no VHS behind the box at the video store".
The photo was believed to have been taken in 1997 or '98, as depicted by the Face Off new release video on the wall, at the store next to where Sizzler use to be.
It was his mother Annette Tramacchi who spotted the meme in her local paper and was certain it was her son 20 years ago.
But she was bamboozled by how it came to be turned into a meme and took it to Brisbane to show her son, who confirmed it was him.
"I saw it and couldn't work out how they got the picture of my son for a meme," Mrs Trammachi said.
Jokingly she questioned if it was security footage from the video store from two decades ago.
"It goes to show you can't get away with anything - you never know where your photo will turn up," she said.
"Your mother will always know, even if it's in the paper 20 years later."
Sen-Const Tramacchi, 46, also couldn't work out how a photo, which would have been taken on film, was processed and uploaded to the internet for someone to create a meme out of.
"I'm wearing my hat from the Blue Moose nightclub which was only in Bundaberg for a year or two around that time," he said.
"I really have no idea how it came to be.
"The photo obviously isn't staged and in those days there wasn't mobile phones to take pics like now."
The police officer, who works in the crime prevention unit, said he wasn't concerned about it as everything seemed to be on the internet these days.
"At least I was looking at Face Off and nothing else," he joked.
Sen-Const Tramacchi said no one could tear him away from video stores in his youth.
"The video people of the time would ask my opinion of the videos because I had seen all of them," he said.
The NewsMail found the meme on a local Facebook page and it also comes up in VHS meme if Googled.
If anyone has information about the creator of the meme they can contact reporter Emma Reid by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.