Laughter from Toksook Bay: Noah Loves Kristy
Toksook Bay, a remote town off the coast of Western Alaska, is home to Yupik language, hunting, boating, and the social media sensation, Noah Loves Kristy, a couple married for almost 20 years.
Noah and Kristy Lincoln have six kids, a brand new granddaughter -- and in their spare time -- they reenact scenes from movies and TV shows with a twist of Native humor.
So far, they have over 40,000 followers on Facebook and 20,000 on TikTok, and it all began while out hunting for geese.
“We had our son take the camera and start recording,” Lincoln said. “It was all natural.”
Once the video rolled, Noah asked Kristy to do different bird calls. First she made raven and goose calls. Then there was a request to mimic a mating swan.
“Be a sexy swan,” said Noah to Kristy in the video. Kristy broke out in laughter, as she made lots of silly sounds.
They posted the video to their Facebook page, where it was shared and reshared hundreds of times. It was at that moment that Noah and Kristy knew they were on to something big.
“I thought, man, we can get so many people to laugh.” Lincoln says. “Just me and my wife make the videos.”
Since the release of the popular show Reservation Dogs on Hulu, Native humor has been trending on social media. But Alaska Native humor is a little different, and often draws upon subsistence hunting,
“Sixteen years I’ve been married. And my wife said she don’t love me anymore,” Noah pouts in the video. The door opens, and Kristy shouts back, “All I said is, you’re not getting a new gun,” her way of complaining about what it’s like to be an avid hunter’s wife.
The videos have even popularized Kristy’s catch phrase, “Gee, whiz,” delivered with a touch of sarcasm, when their social media followers tried to mimic Kristy’s “Gee, whiz” response to things Noah complains about in their videos.
Kristy enjoys acting in the videos with her husband but says it’s Noah who comes up with the ideas.
“It just comes out of the blue,” Kristy says giggling.
But life wasn’t always full of laughter for Noah.
“I was heavily into alcohol, and I couldn’t keep a job,” Noah said.
After realizing what his addiction was doing to his family, Noah swore off alcohol for good. When asked if he is still sober, Noah is always happy to respond, “I am so happy to say, ‘Yes.’”
It also makes Noah happy that their videos bring joy to people, especially those who have their own struggles.
“There’s this lady who lost her daughter. She was grieving for so long, she couldn’t be happy because she lost her daughter, and she came across our videos,” he said. “She started looking through the videos and she found herself laughing and laughing, like she forgot that she was grieving.”
Noah says he’s glad their videos give her hope and healing.
“And that really has opened my eyes and my heart,” he said, getting a little choked-up as he spoke. “Social media is really strong. And I believe laughter is medicine.”
Anthony Lekanof from St. George Island is a Noah and Kristy fan. He says the couple has paved the way for other Indigenous storytellers.
“If you look among the Indigenous creators and comedians, we don’t have a whole lot,” says Lekanof, who believes Noah and Kristy are an inspiration to up and coming artists, whether they pursue comedy or acting. “It really enriches the Indigenous spirit that we have within Alaska, based on how relatable Noah and Kristy are.”
Lekanof says some of the videos bring back memories of his own upbringing on the Pribilof Islands.
For those who aren’t Native but enjoy the videos, it’s a reminder that no matter what your culture is, there’s a common thread -- the need to laugh, one thing Noah and Kristy enjoy satisfying, for both themselves and others.
They also make it a point to sprinkle in messages of inspiration and hope -- that go on to say that at the end of the day, family and faith are everything.
As Noah talked about the spiritual side of producing the “Noah Loves Kristy” series, he spoke first in Yugtun, the Yup’ik language, then translated what he said, “I thank God for everything,” said Noah in English. “Everything happens for a reason for his purpose, thank you Lord.”
With all of the fame and notoriety that comes with their popular skits, Noah and Kristy Lincoln are proud to say they remain humble and happy in Toksook bay, surrounded by their family and the wilderness.