Twitter user @knitcapchan discovered a bag of Life Savers candy at the store with a poorly placed expiration date.
In a comic strip depiction of two pieces of candy talking to each other, the "best by" date appeared in one of the dialogue bubbles, obscuring the original punchline.
The purple Life Saver delivered an unintentionally hilarious non-sequitur, and thus a meme was born.
The caption from the March 15 tweet read, "I almost burst a lung laughing at this comic on the back of my lifesavers bag." Twitter users loved the comically misplaced expiration date and retweeted the photo over 34,000 times.
And because this is Twitter, the original poster felt obliged to prove the pic was his.
It didn't take long for other memes to riff on the photo.
This one used a familiar former meme and added a sweet twist.
Gru seems taken aback by the accidental catchphrase.
The "best by" meme is the hottest thing on the Internet. Clearly.
Earth, Wind & Fire? Yes please.
The popular "boyfriend checking out another girl" stock photo made a cameo.
A famous retailer was incorporated into the meme sensation.
More submissions used variations of the "I have a headache" and "This weather sucks" dialogue.
Even Garfield got into the act, and he will always find a way to knock puppies.
This could launch a whole series based on these characters.
This meme is reminiscent of an ABC Afterschool Special.
Things got a little grim with the life expectancy thing.
People were still curious about what the original punchline said.
Meanwhile, the featured product inspired a debate.
And someone confirmed that Life Savers were the U.S. version of Fruit Polos.
Just to be clear, @softhemmo shared a visual.
According to Wikipedia, candy manufacturer Clarence Crane of Garrettsville, Ohio, invented the candy that looks like life preservers in 1912. He marketed the brand as a "summer candy" that wouldn't melt like chocolate in the summer heat. After registering the trademark, Crane later sold the rights to Edward John Noble for $2,900.
It was Noble who came up with the idea of using aluminum foil, instead of cardboard, to keep the candy fresh. Years later, apparently neither foil nor properly sealed packaging can guarantee eternal freshness.
The expiration date just needs a better placement.