One For The Cynics…


Had this (so called) “optical illusion” laying around for quite some time now. Originally titled “Even God has a sense of humor”, this photo shows a horrible aftermath of a location devastated by heavy floods. Cynics among you will spot it immediately, while for the rest it will take few moments before they can see it. My feelings are still mixed about today’s feature, specially when I tell you (this is the truth) how I originally planned to post this couple of years ago, but then Hurricane Katrina happened, and I felt it would be in bad taste. After a while I have revisited the idea, yet then this horrible Tahiti Haiti earthquake happened, leaving the island in ruins. Once again I decided against it. Hope you won’t find this offensive and mean in any way. Consider it dark humor, something that can’t hurt if properly dosed!

  • Jacey

    BAHAHAHAHAHA!!! That’s horrible!

  • HaloDUDE80


  • Shimomo

    Saw this immediately. And, yes my family and friends always call me a cynic.

  • Salama


  • meh

    I believe you mean the Haiti earthquake…

  • Rackergen

    I don’t think you need to apologize for anything.

  • Michael


  • 1Rbandit

    i think you should have left it “lying around”.
    this is not something you post on a site like this.

  • Robert


  • Nathan


  • Necromaster


  • HI

    Oohhh! Laugh out loud!

  • Jay May


  • so obvious

    I am laughing out loud right now…. ;)

  • merrick

    I think it’s pretty funny, but then I have a morbid sense of humor.

  • Daw

    Not sure I would call this dark humour, though I do not see that anyone should be offended by it

  • Maxxx


  • anonymous

    laugh out loud

  • jack-pliskin

    So the LOL jumped out at me within seconds, what does this mean?

  • eric

    is that real?
    it just looks outta place…

  • Christopher

    Haha! Vurdlak, I understand your pain…[img][/img]

  • NeeL

    I think you’ve covered yourself good enough. :)
    I like it.

  • ruby

    it says LOL…… lol!!

  • Cyril

    I would not be offended if this was really Gods sense of humor, but this picture is clearly photoshopped. see .
    Therefor tasteless!

  • CJ

    Cynic here! Love the pic!

  • Rasmus

    Ummm… You sure you don’t mean Haiti?
    Anyways, i get it :)

  • Norm

    Everything in life depends on our perception: what we see, and how we see it.

    I wouldn’t relate this to ‘God’, myself, simply to the laws of cause and effect. Conditions came together to produce this, those are completely out of our control, and only our state of mind as we view the result counts.

    If we mock tragedy, that’s not so good. If we see a kind of dark humour in our human condition, that might be OK. If we perceive contradiction and irreality, that’s pretty good.

    Whatever, you shouldn’t beat yourself up for posting it! :-)

  • Raymond

    funny pic but i dont see how it is suitable for this site. id probably expect this from failblog or something, but your other feeds are really good Vurdlak.

  • Addy

    Nice. He-he.

  • Josh

    I immediately saw it… No further comment :p

  • Devam

    I found it in a moment! LOL

  • nakar


  • malkarie

    it would be interesting to see a st view satellite image say from Google maps of this location before the floods… the sense of humor maybe visible there before as well without giving away the image

  • shaariq


  • edderiofer


  • Chenoa Zephyra

    “LOL” LOL it’s funny the way things happen sometimes…

  • lasz

    Ha! lol

  • Faye

    Such a sad time, but a good ‘illusion!’ x

  • Sergio

    Is it just the LOL? I was looking for a whole sentence.

  • Frizlab

    Terrible, but…………
    lol !

  • Sergio

    LOL!!! Horizontally centered, a bit to the right of the vertical centre…

  • david

    looks like the Atlanta railyard……only other aspects were not the real devastations we have seen

  • Moustache1020

    LOL, ya that is great, and I’m sure you’re right, that any omnicient being has a dark sense of humor.

  • Brad

    Yeah I remember seeing this a few years ago, but I’m sure there’s many who haven’t seen it.

  • Erica

    oh man, that’s sad and a little funny

  • MaxSaint

    I just say…LOL

  • Mark

    Dude…the earthquake was in haiti, not tahiti.

  • Stan

    Are it the letters LOL that are suppose to be the illusion?

  • Bob the wezel

    all i see is lol in the left cornerish….

  • tena

    what am I suppose to be seeing? I dont get it.

  • Kimon

    I guess I’m cynic all the way…

  • Andrea

    Although I know this is in seeming poor taste, it is what it is. It is more of a brain teaser. When thought of in that vain, it does not feel grotesque in nature to feel proud of one’s self for finding the “God’s Humor” if you will. I feel more relieved that today, you can finally post it. You had to be shocked when you realized what else you were seeing in the photo. Try looking into drinks with ice cubes from the ’70s. I had a teacher, perverse but worked ad agencies prior to teaching job, who was correct in showing our class strategically hidden messages in ice cubes. When we seek, we shall find. (?) Andrea

  • Andrea

    Clarification for finding messages in ice cubes above. The ice cubes were in magazines from the ’70s.

  • Chris


  • Yura

    Do you mean “LOL” in the midlle of the photo? If so, not all the people know what it means, only whose language is English. I can’t call it an optical illusion.

    • scott

      i agree, not an optical illusion at all , very poor pick for this site.

    • Entharion

      Actually, LOL is a dutch word, it means fun :)

  • anna

    Want to see what it looked like before someone photoshopped it? Go to . Don’t be gullible.

    • Cheddar

      Good catch

    • diane

      THANKS ♥

    • Qbee37

      Well done, Anna. Skepticism is crucial these days, and not enough folks are. They’ll take anything, no matter how suspect, at face value.

    • Tracy


    • Shtnly

      How would you even find this?! Well done.

      If you look hard enough, you will find someone to be offended by anything. I like this one, even though it is photoshopped.

      What an impressive website.

    • Skepticism just makes one’s stomach far more acidic…

    • juliuspep

      If it wasn’t photoshopped then I’d say it isn’t offensive, but considering that it has been, then it is extremely so.

      Shame on whoever wasted their time doing it.

    • Suri

      good one Anna

  • Steve

    I guess I’m on a cynic, I don’t see anything. Can anyone tell me what I should be seeing?

    • To Steve,

      In case you have not yet been able to find the Optical Illusion in this picture, here are the directions to help you see it.

      Look a little bit up and a little to the right of the middle of picture. You should see what appears to be the letters “LOL” spelled out among the Flood Damage. Although the Flood and the Damage are all too real, the letters “LOL” do not appear in the original picture. The picture was edited (Photoshopped) after it was taken and the letters “LOL” were added at that time.

      I hope this has helped you Steve, and I hope it will help anyone else that may have trouble finding the Optical Illusion!

      Thank You for taking the time to read my reply!

      David E. Blair

    • Steve,

      Here is the “ORIGINAL” picture that was “NOT PHOTOSHOPPED” OR “EDITED”!!!


  • Umar


  • Debolina Mukherjee

    This indeed is in bad taste

    • Kelsey

      Not bad taste for posting it, but for photoshopping in the first place

  • Alex Deffendall

    Very cool

  • gambitflash

    Did anyone notice a little word “live” written on the left most side of the word “lol”?

    • Peet

      NO. I think it says “Love” and it is above, not beside LOL.

  • Casper

    Pitty that it is photoshopped.
    I always use tineye to find the original pictures:

    • mycaricature

      yes Tineye sorts these matters quickly

  • marcy


  • Definitely in bad taste. Would you find this funny if that was your house flooded?

  • Dan

    LOL is what you should see. I also found something to the right of LOL. Try finding it.

  • Vanyel Kane

    I live in a country that gets regular floods and yet I see no problem with poor taste here. It’s kinda funny actually.

  • Sandy

    LOL, an abbreviation for laughing out loud, or laugh out loud

    • Reedz

      And Lots of Love

  • Froscas

    none of you is able to see the corpses behind the roofs?? I may consider myself the worst of cynics, but even so I can’t smile at the death of hundreds of people…

    If it were brilliant I could consider the artistic side of the photo, but something so stupid as that geek LOL thing chatters spit everyday…

    It’s not offensive nor mean, it’s simply unnecessary. I can’t imagine why you have been thinking about this rubbish during years.

    • mycaricature

      Completely agree!

  • Scuter

    Devastating, yes… but funny? Yes!

  • jodie mison

    is it ment to say LOL

  • gambitflash

    Sorry.I was checking this out on the mobile.It shows it zoomed out.Now I checked on my pc.Turns out it becomes way more obvious when the picture is smaller.It is live.This just goes to show that a picture can percieved in many different ways.It just depends on the mind of the viewer.[img][/img]

  • Thomas

    Its Photoshopped.. Rather obvious. There is program that will analyze it and tell you it is photochopped…

    Delete it please, its highly disrespectfull..

  • che kozaro

    so if this is photoshopped, shouldn’t it be removed? i.e. its a fake

  • How is this an illusion?

  • Fink

    How is it any more disrespectful than a swimming pool or a car…. if you don’t like something turn away.

    I don’t know I think 4 trailers put together with a yard in the middle is a good idea, would look nicer than them stacked on top of each other.


    this is crazy if you look in some places you’ll find faces totally fake!

  • derp ‘n’ herp

    LOL it said LOL

  • anonimo

    in the right it says LOL

  • As the photographer whose original image was lifted, digitally manipulated, then subsequently misused on this site, I feel compelled to set the record straight about this post.

    The image posted here is without question a photoshopped forgery based on a photograph taken on the morning of August 30, 2005 showing the flooded Lower Ninth Ward in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.

    The original image has been widely circulated and was part of a portfolio that was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for breaking news in 2006 —

    Many words have been tossed about here, notably “cynic” and “offensive”. Count me among the cynics.

    We live in a world saturated with falsified imagery. A world where anyone with easy-to-use digital tools, too much time on their hands and an internet connection can easily and quickly create a visual lie and send it around the world. It is a shame that a site purporting to celebrate optical illusion, with nearly 22,000 Facebook followers no less, so willingly disseminates such a fraud — and then goes on to unabashedly lie about the image in the text.

    “When I tell you (this is the truth) how I originally planned to post this couple of years ago, but then Hurricane Katrina happened,” is a shameless lie. That would be impossible since the the original image was shot after the hurricane struck land. What did the author think? That saying “this is the truth” would somehow strengthen the credibility of the lie?

    This sort of deceit is deplorable.

    Even if we overlook the poor taste in creating a childish prank with an image of a disaster where thousands died and tens of thousands of homes were destroyed, the damage caused by this sort of misguided attempt at humor runs even deeper.

    A few years later I photographed destruction in Texas caused by Hurricane Ike. One surprising image from that disaster shows a single house left standing in rubble of a neighborhood flattened by the storm:

    In the days that followed the image appearing on the news wires, numerous allegations surfaced around the internet that the image was fake. It took the owner of the house jumping into the fray to quash those allegations.

    That is the problem with willfully disseminating easily falsified imagery as has been done here. The recipients of the imagery have already become so cynical they easily conclude any hard-to-believe photo must be fake.

    Yet our natural world is filled with wonder, and horror, and illusions. It is filled with amazing visuals. Celebrating this wonderment, and the its sometimes illusory nature – as this site purports to do – is laudable.

    Willingly disseminating visual forgery under the guise of truthful imagery is despicable and serves only to further undermine the power of photography (and particularly photojournalism) to capture the incredibly rich visual world in which we live.

  • Kate

    LOL. I’m 100% cynic, found LOL before I even clicked on the illusion

    • WarriorGirl

      Same, I was just waiting for something else 2 pop out

  • Bullrider

    Wow, i experienced Katrina, but this is just hilarious!

  • MIA

    It’s a good one.. too bad it’s photoshopped :/

  • cool froggy

    its says lol shud there be something else aswell?

  • Anna

    Lol. Photoshop.

  • pinkpopsicle

    LOL :P
    i wish it wasn’t photoshopped

  • valeriestarkk

    Its not photoshopped. its real

  • Person

    I saw it right away ‘LOL’

  • Harper

    How can you guys tell if it’s photo shopped??

  • areu

    i was actually spotted LOL,,,or is there another thing to discover?

  • STR e t C H


  • Cuddles


  • m.ihsan hanafi


  • I spotted the LOL Word in Google earth!
    That was Easy

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