Professional Retard is a phrase seen on the meme depicting the world famous cartoon character, SpongeBob SquarePants posing with a nametag featuring the title.
The meme is used as a way of admitting one’s stupidity after an action with questionable logic.
Origin of the meme
The image macro has been obviously edited, using numerous materials from the iconic series. There are at least three different parts of the macro, each from a different context; from the face of SpongeBob to his outfit and nametag, which has also been visibly edited; no text is seen in the series that reads “professional retard”.
The first instance of the image macro was seen on the site Imgur in 2019, where the text reads “When you look at a meme for 30 secs and realize it’s an ad”.
Funnily, the phrase has been part of the Urban Dictionary archives since 2004, so it has likely served as inspiration for the meme itself.
Spread of the meme
Following the Imgur meme, the image macro has been uploaded to Reddit’s /r/dankememes thread where it quickly gained ground.
Several memes have been created using it, that had spread from Reddit to the usual meme platforms and even Instagram.