Side Note

R.I.P. Young King Dave

Last year, across my Twitter, I started seeing videos of a large, bearded man smoking a gigantic joint and proclaiming, in a high-pitched voice, “It’s fucking nice out, who’s trying to chill and smoke some loud?” This was funny without context, in the way that many things on the internet are. It turned out that the video had been pitch-shifted; in the original, the man speaks in a naturally deeper voice. There were more videos of the same vein, where he smoked gigantic joints — or big “doinks” as he called them — and went about his day, offering musings about life.

The man in these videos was David James Nixon, who quickly parlayed this viral fame into social media popularity. Today, news spread that Nixon, or Young King Dave, as he was known — died this week, as confirmed by Vice. The cause was complications from a hospital stay following a collapsed lung. Nixon was just 19 years old, and a GoFundMe has been set up to pay for the funeral expenses, with the remaining proceeds going to the Make a Wish Foundation.

This is very sad for obvious reasons, as 19 is much too young. But it’s beautiful, in a strange way, that Nixon might be remembered for introducing “doink” into the weed-smoking lexicon. Last year, the word popped up on Urban Dictionary, as defined clearly by Nixon’s usage; across Twitter, people have been sharing their remembrances of Nixon by quoting his catchphrase. Nixon was pursuing music, but he’d already made his mark; I, my friends, and maybe even you will use “doink” for the rest of our lives. In the Vice article, his friend and manager Chris Clemenza is asked what Nixon will be remembered for. His answer, said with humor: “They’re gonna remember him for doinks!”