First things first, this image of the “My First Hookah Toy” from last year is FAKE, but that doesn’t stop it from being repeatedly shared on social media today as fact.
The number of shares and comments on this 2022 post is staggering. Many people are triggered by this image and for good reason.
The worst part is that not many comments mention that the image was concocted by meme creator and digital artist Adam Padilla as satire or a joke. His Twitter bio reads, “I meme therefore I am.”
The problem is that not everyone knows it’s satire or they simply don’t care. It is still being shared to this day and people are even searching for this non-existent hookah toy on Amazon!
Others seem to not be offended at all, comparing the concept to candy cigarettes in the 80’s. I ate candy cigarettes as a kid, and there was even one bubble gum variety that puffed smoke. The fake “smoke” was some sort of powdered sugar. It was fun, but when you know better, you do better. I haven’t seen candy cigarettes in stores in decades, only in specialty and retro candy shops.
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When The Hookah Hoax First Appeared
The image of this fictitious toy first emerged on Twitter on December 15th 2021. Padilla tweeted out the brightly colored bubble blowing toy along with the words, “Just in time for the holidays.”
A day later it was picking up steam on facebook with the caption, “Who the hell is responsible for this.”
As Christmas drew closer, the image began to go viral. Some were irate and immediately questioned the toy’s authenticity.
View this post on Instagram
Now it looks like the toy is circulating again just in time for the Fall when parents are beginning to think about shopping for kids’ holiday gifts.
Fact or Fiction
Padilla is also responsible for the “My First Vape” meme that fooled many across social media.
We have to be very careful about the images and stories we share with our family members and colleagues because it could cause a panic among parents for no reason. It could also lead to your account being deleted or suspended if one of these platforms decides you are spreading false information. Best case scenario is that you’ll land yourself in facebook jail for a day or two.
So much of what we see online is meant to be a joke or satire but little is being done to make sure people understand that. There have been many posts that I’ve questioned but was still left wondering about the truth.
When will it end?
My guess is that this bubble blowing hookah toy for kids will continue to resurface every holiday season for years to come, but I hope it leads people to dig deeper and possibly find this post about how this “My First Hookah” joke got started in the first place.
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