New Antihistamines. just in time too. It's only a matter of time before I come into contact with something I'm allergic to, and that rarely ends well for me. Got me thinking about a theory which belonged to an old friend, what seems like a lifetime ago. It comes up because I've tried, I've really tried. For a long time I managed. But I can't stop writing. I can't resist writing about what's happening here. I haven't been able to ever since He first appeared. In the year or so I was away from online blogs, I filled journals. I used up a year diary in two months, scribbling away. I'm only uploading a fraction of what I have saved on this computer. I can't hold it in. Two blogs. Almost fifty posts, only to be read by random strangers..
Oh don't look at me like that, you do it too.
Some of you write. Some of you can't stop filming yourselves. That dear sweet Nessa had her drawings too. I heard of one runner who just made music about it. But we just have to express ourselves about it. It's like that Lovecraft joke, "The Lovecraftian compulsion to keep writing even as one is being devoured." Some of us have done illegal things, amoral things. Hell, some of us have done downright despicable things. Yet we document and, more importantly, we disseminate. I had to throw away those journals to keep from uploading them, and I'm almost certain that someone found them. I'm almost certain that I left them where I was sure someone would find them.
It kinda reminds me of the compusion, when you're sick, to cough or sneeze.
We runners get sick a lot. We cough uncontrollably. We get blackouts. Some of us hallucinate. Hell, we have a name for it - slendersickness. And I've always been sick. Never healthy.
We cough up these this information and then it spreads, and the information spreads like...
Bonus round: Who here knows where the term "meme" came from?
Time's up! The term was coined by Richard Dawkins in his landmark biology essay "The Selfish Gene". Here, he developed the basis for evolutionary biology and psychology being refocused on genes themselves, and on all living creatures being ultimately there to further their own genetic line. They fight for prominence, and some succeed, some fail. Organisms spread and struggle for the sake of their genetic makeup.
By way of analogy, he suggested that cultural information does the same thing. He suggested that information has a makeup of its own individual units - instead of genes, he used the term "memes" for these. He created the idea of the story as an organism, spreading, evolving and adapting, or failing. Stories are like organisms, and the ideas and concepts that make it up are like genes. And the organism that the story of the tall man in the business suit ressembles most is a virus. A sickness.
It takes over its host. They disseminate virons at a massive rate. Then, often, they die.
It's all symptoms, my friend argued. The coughing. The mental decline. Hell, maybe even the visions of the man Himself. The slendersickness is at the heart of it all. And we're all infecting one another, different strains arising with different characteristics, mutating at the rate of chinese whispers, changing and adapting, growing and spreading. The memetic structure becoming more complex as it infects and claims more victims. I feel sick just thinking about it.
Of course, this supposed revelation never saved my friend. Perhaps a new theory is in order.
And so I resolve to go see an expert. Someone I just recently unearthed. We've got a long trip ahead of us!