“I was looking for a pin of the band The Jam,” Nate explained in an interview with Atlas Obscura “I came upon this eBay seller who had thousands and thousands of pins from the ’70s and ’80s, and I went down this weird rabbit hole. I bought a whole bunch of them, because they were old and weird and made me laugh.”
Amongst this collection was the aforementioned "Geedis" pin.
“I didn’t really think about it at first, but then it just kept popping in my head, like, what is that?”
Internet searches provided no answers, making the mystery of who or what Geedis all the more enticing. “The more obscure the thing became the more it made me laugh,” Nate said “Then I bought it and became more obsessed with it.”
He contacted the seller to see if they had any information on the pin, with no luck. Soon, Nate came across 3 more Geedis pins from different sellers, but none could tell him anything about them or where they’d come from. This is what led him to post the question to his social media.
Nate’s Tweet caused a storm of replies. Many had the vague sense they had seen the character before. Comparisons were made to everything from Where the Wild Things Are...
None of this seemed even tangentially related to the character on the pin, however.
It wasn’t until someone found a sticker sheet featuring the character that things really took off…
Moreover, a seemingly completely unrelated song also called “Land of Ta” was released by the band Smith & Dragoman in 2007, ten years before this search began.
The stickers themselves had been posted to the Flikr album of a collector named Donald Deveau, and one poster contacted him asking “What the hell is The Land Of Ta?” Deveau eventually answered:
Because internet, this caused speculation to take a turn into The Mandela Effect and proof of parallel universes. However, the explanation for all this became clear when Carrie posted the full page pic a few days later:
“disclaimer: this book is a work of fiction, as is its author. The book was not actually published in 1982, but constructed by me in 2017. I am happy to continue the tale of the elussive Mr. Famea and his work for anyone who may be curious, but i have no desire to actually decieve anyone. thanks for reading! -carrie z”
Yep, this was a hoax. Some people praised Carrie for it, others got angry about it. But no one was any closer to unravelling the mystery of Geebis.
This is essentially all the concrete information we have to this day about Geedis and The Land of Ta. Since then, there’s been numerous speculations, theories, and uncomfirmed testimonials that range from plausible to obvious trolls.
Some think it originated as a pitch for a toyline or children’s cartoon that never left the development stage. Some think it was simply nothing more than a sticker artist exercizing their imagination, like fanfic in merchandise form. Others maintain the belief that there is something more to be uncovered, a secret franchise that fell into obscurity long before the internet archived every minutia of pop culture. Some have even claimed the entire thing is an elaborate hoax perpetrated by Nate Fernald, who produced the pins and stickers himself!
You can find a summary of every theory here:
Currently, an attempt is being made to find the artist of these stickers, but as of this writing there’s been no luck in this regard.
However, consider myself one who revels in the mystery without answers. There’s an allure to Geebis and Ta, something familiar yet undefinable, with plenty of space to fill in with one’s own imagination.