Big Think seems to be involved in a lot of meme-creation these days. And two prominent examples, featuring past Big Think experts Neil deGrasse Tyson and Salman Rushdie, happen to involve the word “badass.” We are proud of these significant contributions to contemporary culture.
The Neil DeGrasse Tyson “Watch out Guys, we’re dealing with a badass over here” meme.

As described on “Know Your Meme” , this one comes from a Big Think video on You Tube, which someone edited into an animated gif and distributed on Reddit. Someone else then turned it into the following illustration, which is all over the internet, featured on t-shirts, and generally going viral in a massive way.


From Know Your Meme: 


Neil deGrasse Tyson Reaction is a rage comic character and reaction face of astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson making a defensive gesture. It is sometimes associated with the catchphrase “Watch out guys, we’re dealing with a badass over here” that is used to mock arrogant and boastful statements that people proclaim on the Internet (see also So Hardcore).


The outline drawing was taken from an interview with the online knowledge forum Big Think on living and longevity that was uploaded to YouTube on June 3rd, 2011. The non-plussed reaction can be seen at 1:32 in the following video when Tyson explains how Sir Isaac Newton invented calculus before his 26th birthday:

We love Salman Rushdie. He visited our studios in November 2010 and spoke on a variety of subjects, including "Do Chicks Dig Fatwas?" 

On Thursday night (12/1), Rushdie tweeted

@SalmanRushdieSalman Rushdie

"@Shteyngart Do you and @SalmanRushdie and other badass authors really just hang out?" you have no idea of the depths of our joint badassery

Our own Jason Gots (@jgots) responded with:

@jgotsJason Gots

@SalmanRushdie I refuse to believe that Salman Rushdie just wrote 'badassery.'

Rushdie immediately riposted with:


@SalmanRushdieSalman Rushdie

"@jgots: @SalmanRushdie I refuse to believe that Salman Rushdie just wrote 'badassery.'" Badassery badassery badassery. Believe it.

Which sparked a veritable twittstorm of retweets and responses, including:

@roadrunner570Tim Miller

@SalmanRushdie @jgots just got schooled! RUSHDIE-STYLE!

Totally delighted with all this, Jason closed with:

@jgotsJason Gots

@SalmanRushdie Damn. I stand contweeted.
11 hours ago via Twitterrific

Then went to sleep.  

Now, most likely as a result of all this, #badassery is all over twitter. And may soon go viral everywhere. Check it. And Salman Rushdie is the source. This is truly an extraordinary age we live in.