‘You’re road’ meme at the center of debate on regional accents, Filipino migration

April 11, 2018 - 6:17 PM

The newest addition to social media’s meme circuit isn’t a source of amusement for some.

“You’re road” is based on a footage from TLC’s reality program “90 Day Fiance: Before the 90 Days.” The segment follows Larry, an American who travels to the Philippines to propose marriage to Jenny, a Filipino he met online.

The footage shows Larry and Jenny figure in an argument. Jenny, presumably wanting to chide her beau for his behavior, says Larry is “rude” and acts “like a kid.”

Her pronunciation of the words “road” and “kid” appear to be a cause for hilarity for some.

Some have criticized the use of the footage for humor.

Writer Mark Angeles on his Facebook profile wrote a lengthy defense of Jenny, the Filipino woman whose utterances were the source of a new batch of memes, which are arguably also rude.

Angeles points out Jenny’s Ilocano accent which may have been the reason for her pronunciation of the word “rude,” and attacks those who had labelled Jenny a gold digger and an opportunist for choosing to be in a relationship with a foreigner she barely knew.

For Angeles, supposed “mail order brides” were similar to the “victims” of the government’s labor export policy.

Rapper BLKD and writer Ellie Centeno were among those who defended Jenny.

A discussion has also popped up on Reddit.

Some voiced their criticism of the public’s fixation on the meme.

“The public’s fascination with the ‘You’re Road’ catchphrase only reflects the fact that urban dwellers here in the islands still think less of people from the rural communities. Disappointing,” wrote one user.

Justification and clarification

There was also some resistance. A BLKD’s thread reasoned that there was no malice intended by poking fun at the footage. The user reasoned how memes in general never stayed in the public’s consciousness for too long.

Another meme from Facebook: You’re road building roads

Comments on Angeles’ post also explained the public’s reaction to Jenny. One user pointed out that Jenny’s remark was seen in the context of her general attitude on the show. For this user, Jenny was apparently emotionally abusive toward her partner.

Another user refused to accept Angeles’ defense of Jenny’s supposed use of her relationship with Larry to secure passage to the US.

Another introduced a fresh perspective. Apparently, the origin of the meme can actually be traced to an erroneous subtitle aired by TLC which used “road” instead of “rude.”