It may seem difficult to believe, but it’s been close to a decade since The Office episode “Casual Friday” introduced fans to the saga of accountant Kevin Malone and his doomed pot of chili. Still, the moment lives on in everyone’s hearts — and on the internet, forever. And now, Kevin form The Office has responded to the epic chili meme on Instagram — or, to be more specific, actor Brian Baumgartner shared Kevin’s chili memes on his Instagram account to celebrate the famous moment, and it cemented the cold open as one of the best, funniest, and most tragic in Office history. The only weird part of this is that the episode actually aired on April 30, 2009, prompting an anniversary meme, which means he’s a few months late to the celebration.
This is where things get a little wonky. Baumgartner reposted what looks like a screengrab of his tweet — one that originally appeared on the meme account F*ck Jerry. The supposed tweet shows a photo of Kevin dripping in spilled chili with the statement, “on this day 9 years ago, i dropped the pot of chili.” It looks like it’s something the actor and poker player tweeted himself — it appears to be from his verified Twitter account — but it’s possible that the tweet was photoshopped to double down on the meme. “Though this was not posted by me or my account,” he wrote on Instagram, “Thanks for the heads up. I will put it in my calendar as well”. Again, though, the episode aired toward the end of Season 5, which means the anniversary of the chili scene has long passed. Why is the actor just seeing it now? It’s best not to look too deeply into a blessing such as this, probably.
By the way, where can one sign a petition to make “Kevin spilling his chili” an official holiday? Just wondering.
It’s not the first time the actor has acknowledged the meme — even this summer. On August 21, Baumgartner posted an Instagram that compared the moment Kevin spilled his lovingly crafted pot of chili all over the floor to a similar moment immortalized by art history. It was a repost from a fan who posted the initial comparison, and Baumgartner was all about it. “This. Is. Awesome,” he wrote in the caption, adding the statement, “I want this painting” and the hashtag #chili. By the way, are a lot of people using the hashtag #chili? Because that’s incredible. Especially if fans were to take it over, and populate the #chili hashtag on Instagram with endless photos, memes, videos, and general recreations of the Kevin’s Famous Chili moment. Just a polite suggestion.
The scene itself is funny enough — or devastating, depending on how you watch it – but it’s really taken on a life of its own on the internet. It’s so silly and so sad and so endlessly relatable. Not literally, for most people, but figuratively. It’s just a beautiful and absurd scene.
It’s a glorious comedy nugget that was cached and immortalized by the internet, and everyone is better off for it.