Slavery, Death, and Three Other Reasons You Should Never Plank Again
|Nope, he's not napping.|
The trend (reportedly) began in England in 1997 under the much less meme-friendly name "Lying Down Game." Now the meme is at its peak, with every kind of celebrity from Katy Perry to Flava Flav tweeting planking photos. So irreverent! So fun! Right? Wrong. According to some critics, planking is not only a little distasteful but also hella dangerous. (And yes, before you say anything, we were indeed that kid on the playground warning folks not to climb on the monkey bars. But who's the fool whose elbow bone came piercing out of his flesh? Not us.)
5. Slavery. That's right. Some people believe the planking trend's roots go back to how slaves were packed in ships during the Middle Passage. On Wednesday, BET's Danielle Wright discussed how slaves were collared to planks beneath the deck of slave ships. The chained men and women assumed the same position as today's plankers -- completely flat with palms at thighs -- so that the captain could pack in more bodies. Check the below image to see if it doesn't shed new light on folks like Katy Perry planking across their yachts.