Know what I Meme?

The internet can be a mystifying place. And I don’t just mean the labyrinth-esque routes to websites, nor the complex jargon. No, I’m talking about all those memes out there.

What is a meme? Well, I’m glad you ask, because despite being what I had assumed was ‘hip’ to the internet lingo, I still only learned this term during the past year. To discover the definition for myself, I turned to faithful Wikipedia, just another internet creation that couldn’t live without. Wikipedia defined a meme (which they first told me is pronounced to rhyme with cream…good thing I had never actually had a chance to speak it aloud because I’m quite sure that I would not have pronounced it as such) as “ideas or beliefs that are transmitted from one person or group of people to another.” Vague, right? So I read on: “A meme acts as a unit for carrying cultural ideas, symbols, or practices, which can be transmitted from one mind to another through writing, speech, gestures, rituals or other imitable phenomena.” Still vague. Here I was, thinking that a meme would automatically be in reference to the internet– how foolish of me, living in the digital age, to assume such. In fact, the concept of a meme comes from the analogy that “as genes transmit biological information, memes can be said to transmit idea and belief information.” They are applicable throughout culture, including in spheres of religion, models of racism, and anthropological theories.

But to focus once more on the internet meme, this term is used to describe to describe concepts transmitted through the internet. Once more I had been hoping for a better explanation, but by coming across these indistinct interpretations I began to understand that the whole point was the memes weren’t as simple as they seemed. I was hoping for a specific definition that I could grasp and pass along, but the truth is that memes are all around us on the internet. By using sites such as blogs, social networking, and (my latest favorite) tumblr, we are constantly transmitting these memes. The internet is the society, and the memes are the culture.

To me, memes are best represented by the internet phenomenon. My internet-saavy suitemate will often show me YouTube videos or silly blogs that, despite obscure or non sequitur references, somehow gather a cult following. These are memes. But there’s more to them than just silly ways for hipsters to pass their time. Public relations, advertising, and marketing professionals have all taken advantage of using memes in viral marketing. Memes help create buz about a company, product, or service. They’re inexpensive and, if conducted properly, can become quite popular, especially with niche audiences. They’re also a great way to show creativity. Often the film industry will use memes to generate attention for movies.

For further information on memes, I highly suggest the website Know Your Meme. You will find yourself bombarded with hours of useless information and entertainment.

 

 

Snowbound with Dogs and a Camera

Tomorrow I head back to school and another semester of work begins. Due to my increased scholastic activities, it may prove difficult for me to update this blog as frequently as I have been doing over this snowy winter break. Then again, my procrastination skills are quite excellent, and I might very possibly turn to this blog as another way to avoid a dreaded assignment (oh, fear not– I always get the work done. And done well. Usually the procrastination comes very early on in the process. I’m actually a geek who likes to get things done both timely and well). Now that I have issued this warning, I want to take a brief moment to share some more “personal” things with you. Mainly, my dogs. You see, this morning we had a minor medical scare with my older dog (Lucky, the younger one is Nola). He’s pretty up there in years, which means that every minor abnormal behavior can sometimes give us a scare. His being older also means that this dog has been around the majority of my life– he grew up with me and he’s just as special as a human family member. Long story short, everything turned out okay. One emergency pet hospital visit, an x-ray, and some medication later, Lucky is the same old dog.

Concurrent with these happenings, I’ve recently acquired a new camera. A digital SLR (Canon, of course) that was a combined Christmas (late) and Birthday (very early) present. It has quickly become my favorite new possession, but due to so many snowbound days, my photographic subject matter has been limited. Luckily, I happen to live with two adorable dogs who somehow had the patience to sit through picture after picture with a camera in their faces. I’ve just uploaded the photos and I feel like I have to share(*Note: still learning to use the camera so don’t be too judgmental about the quality of my pictures). So, in honor of Lucky feeling better and my new camera– Enjoy!

This is Nola. Her puppy-dog eyes means she gets pretty much whatever she wants, including a couch all to herself. In this picture I just imagine her saying, "Go ahead, try to say 'no' to me."

 

This is Lucky. He gave up caring long ago about what you might think of his grey (white) hair. He's an old man, but I still call him my puppy.

 

 

They pretty much think they own the house (and all the furniture within it).

 

 

She is disgustingly photogenic. And adorable.

He loves staring out the back patio door, but someone forgot to open the sliders. He doesn't let that bother him.

Nola is a hound dog of indeterminate breed. Needless to say, she howl. Lucky never used to howl, but when we got Nola a couple of years ago, he picked up on it. Now they howl in unison.

Dogs are incredible. Their unconditional love is a precious gift. These two are the best.

 

 

 

On entering “the real world.”

Warning: This post will feature no tidbits of knowledge, pretty pictures, or catchy words.

I’m taking this time to write more of a personal post. This upcoming week I begin the last semester of my college career. While I find it hard to believe that four (amazing) years will have come and gone, I find it even harder to grasp the idea of being a part of what I have dubbed “the real world.”

Having an older brother, I remember two years ago when I saw him go through the same experiences as I am now facing. He graduated, we all cried, it was an emotional time. I couldn’t believe he had reached that point. I couldn’t believe that my childhood playmate, the kid who used to make me laugh as well as cry, the one who always knew how to set up the coolest Lego creations– he was graduating. I think it was around that time that I first realized that it wouldn’t be long until I found myself in that same position. And here it comes.

I’m almost 22, I’m about to graduate from college…now what?

As of yet, I don’t have a job. I’m a public relations major (um, seen the website?–duh) and I’ve absolutely loved the work that I’ve been able to do in that field. I’m a media enthusiast in general, and would love to combine my interest in film and television with my love for public relations.

The logical next step is the job search, an intimidating practice that I’ve attempted a multitude of times. From Monster.com to Indeed.com, to my university’s private job listings, the process is always lackluster and disappointing. The problem is finding an entry-level job in the first place. Most listings are looking for professionals with “min. 5 yrs exp.”

Why should an employer take a gamble on hiring a newbie, fresh out of school, who they will undoubtedly need to coach on the basics (no matter what experience the student may have had)? With today’s economic climate, convincing an employer of your worth is harder than ever. Jobs are scarce and the competition is fierce. It’s like a jungle out there (please ignore the corny phrasing).

But I will enter this final semester with my head held high. And come graduation? Well, there will be tears (plenty of them), but I promise to also look excitedly toward the next big adventure in my life, even if it means I’m entering “the real world.”