Like your women flat as a board? Then get your abs to Taiwan, where two twenty-somethings from Taipei and Taichung are prone to putting themselves in some very uncompromising positions... and that's no lie.
The urban fad known as Planking picks up where Parkour leaves off, removing all the action while adding a dash of surrealism. Besides requiring much less energy, Planking is much easier to document in photography, as these two Taiwanese gal pal plankers illustrate in the images accompanying this post.
Jinyu (25) and Karren (28) hail from Taipei and Taichung, respectively, and in Planking they've found a way to combine their hobby of photography with what is known in the local Hokkien dialect as “Puk Kai” (仆街).
According to China Smack, “Puk Kai (or Pu Jie in Mandarin) means to lie face down on the street, but it can also describe someone who suddenly died on the street and whose body has not been taken away.” Nice.
The two inflexible ingenues have become the face of Planking, which is somewhat ironic as all of their photos portray them face down – which is the whole point, after all. They do need a better name, however, as “Face Down on the Streets Girls” is just too long and too literal for my liking.
Perhaps the Aussies can come up with something catchier; they coined the term “Planking” earlier this year when photos of the odd activity posted online snowballed into an Internet meme.
Face it (sorry), Planking beats “the lying down game” hands down, amiright? Besides, “the lying down game” reminds one of “the choking game”, and does anyone really want to be reminded of that?
So, does Planking have a future or is it destined to flame out like so many memes and trends have done before? It's not as if Planking is a competitive endeavor with planking practitioners one-upping one another in some sort of Extreme Planking contest... not that I'm suggesting any such thing.
Sadly, some Plankers have already taken things too far. On May 15th of 2011, a 20-year-old Aussie from Queensland was charged after officers caught him planking on a police car.
Much worse, 20-year-old Acton Beale plunged from a 7th floor balcony after attempting to perform a Plank on the railing. Beale subsequently became the world's first Planking fatality.
Accidents will happen, as Elvis Costello once said, and though the Acton Beale tragedy may put a damper on the festivities, The Planking Australia group on Facebook is going ahead with a planned Planking Day for May 25th, 2011.
It's hoped that the inaugural event will succeed in encouraging people to try Planking, either singly or through “Group Planking”. Arrr, these younguns be stealin' me thunder! Tie the scurvy dogs t' the yardarm... face down!