The Twittersphere has been overwhelmed by a mystery this week that has bordered on the realm of absurdist art. On Monday morning, Jensen Karp, the Los Angeles-based comedy writer and co-founder of the pop culture art space Gallery1988, made a troubling discovery during the most important meal of the day. He had just indulged in a delectable bowl of Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal, and as he poured himself a second serving: an unsettling item fell from the bag. “Something plopped out of the box,” he told the New York Times. “I picked it up, and I was like, ‘This is clearly a shrimp tail.’” After peering into the box, Karp discovered what appeared to be a second sugar-coated crustacean appendage. Karp shared the information with his wife, Danielle Fishel Karp—the actress who notably played Topanga on the television series "Boy Meets World"—before sharing it with the world in a viral tweet.
As a gallerist and writer—and former child rap battle prodigy—it has been posited that the effort could have been some form of performance art or an offbeat comedy bit, but Karp told The Times that he doesn’t possess the craft skills to create such a forgery, and has yet to reply to The Art Newspaper’s inquiry on the matter. The cereal brand replied to original Karp’s tweet, stating that “after further investigation with our team that closely examined the image, it appears to be an accumulation of the cinnamon sugar that sometimes can occur when ingredients aren't thoroughly blended”. To which Karp replied: “Ok, we’ll after further investigation with my eyes, these are cinnamon coated SHRIMP TAILS.”
The two alleged shrimp tails that Karp discovered are currently on their way to be studied by a crustacean researcher who hopes to use its DNA to identify the shrimp species. Conceptual art critics have kept conspicuously mum about the matter.