Introducing #RiceBallBabies, Japan’s latest weird-yet-adorable internet trend.
#RiceBallBabies has become a wildly popular meme in Japan recently, and in a nutshell, it involves parents squishing their babies’ faces until they resemble edible rice balls, taking a photo, and uploading it to social media.
It is done by adults holding their thumbs under the baby’s face, fanning their fingers around their cheeks, and gently squeezing.
It was started by Japanese comedian Masahiro Ehara, who uploaded photos of himself squishing his kids' faces to Twitter in June.
And while the meme is obviously cute, it is also thought to have become so popular by harnessing mankind's instinctive "cute aggression" - in other words, our inexplicable desire to squeeze or pinch cute things (don't pretend you've never experienced this urge).
Some people have even started adapting the meme by squishing their pets' or partners' faces instead of babies:
But we're fans of the original. See Exhibit A:
And Exhibit B:
And Exhibit C:
The internet is a marvellous place, no?
#RiceBallBabies - cute, or just plain weird?
WATCH for more on the #RiceBallBabies trend...