It's the end of the year. A time to reflect, a time to give thanks, a time to examine 2013's strangest trends on Twitter.
Twitter has created a special #YearOnTwitter area where the social network lists the most memorable tweets and trends from the past 12 months. Here are just a few...
1. In March, the #Makankosappo hashtag took off. What the heck did it mean? Those who are fluent in manga will recognize the word as a special attack move from "Dragon Ball." Students took to re-creating the move in real life and posting photos to Twitter. Because that's why the Internet was invented.
2. A pair of memorable filibusters went viral on Twitter. In March, #StandWithRand trended, a reference to Sen. Rand Paul's 13-hour filibuster over the nomination of John Brennan to lead the CIA. Brennan was eventually confirmed. In June, #StandWithWendy became a trend, this one a reference to Texas State Sen. Wendy Davis' 13-hour filibuster over abortion rights in the Lone Star State.
3. This one wasn't a hashtag, but it could have just as easily been. In June, a red panda went AWOL from the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. Fortunately, the creature (name: Rusty) was later found unharmed. Rusty has yet to explain the details of his great escape. Perhaps he's protecting an accomplice? Baraka the gorilla, we're looking at you.
4. In July, Twitter was struck by a #Sharknado. The Syfy TV movie that featured a swirling tornado full of hungry and annoyed sharks became a "so bad it's good" classic. Twitter writes that the movie generated
"more than 300,000 Tweets during the first broadcast." Expect a sequel in 2014, because ... well, duh.
5. You'd think it would be easy to let people know they've won the Nobel Prize. Not so. In October, the Nobel Prize committee had some difficulty locating a few winners, which inspired "Please claim your #NobelPeacePrize" to take off. Unknown: Why the committee didn't give everybody restaurant coaster-beepers in advance.
6. Talk about a hero. San Francisco's Miles Scott became a huge hit on Twitter (#SFBatkid) after the 5-year-old cancer patient turned into his alter ego "Batkid," and with the help of Batman, saved the city from the nefarious Riddler and Penguin. Batkid's heroics cost the city a pretty penny in terms of police use and shut down city streets, but even the Joker would agree it was worth it.
Follow Mike Krumboltz on Twitter at @mikekrumboltz.