Hot Flashes, Part Whatever
Tonight I'm Gonna Party Like It's 1984

The Impossible Meme

I've been "memed." Which isn't like being "slimed" in the old Ghostbusters movies. ( I the only one who's surprised Hollywood hasn't remade those yet?) No, being memed is a good thing, provided you've got time for a little literary silliness. And I always try to make time for that.

I'm not really up on these "meme" things, actually, but as best I can make out they're the online equivalent of a Chinese fire you can be drafted into. And literary Web maven Marshal Zeringue has drafted me. Now I'm supposed to grab the nearest book and let you know what the sixth, seventh and eighth lines are on page 123.

There's only one problem, and I'm totally not joking here, folks. The nearest book to me is the magnum opus Pooh and the Dragon, which my 4-year-old daughter left on my desk yesterday. As you might expect, there is no page 123. In fact, the thing's so short, it doesn't even have page numbers. So I'll just hit you with lines six through eight of the whole thing.

"No, we weren't scared," Roo giggled. "Why would we be?" He yawned.

Scintillating stuff!

Going slightly further afield -- like an extra six inches away on my desk -- is a book with both the prerequisite number of pages and a slightly more worldly vibe. That book being The Killer Inside Me by Jim Thompson. I just finished reading it a couple days ago, and let me tell you -- it's no Pooh and the Dragon. And I mean that in the best possible way.

Here's what's meme-able from the book.

"You hurt me."

"I did?" I said. "Gosh, I'm sorry, honey."

Not so scintillating stuff! Which is a shame, because this book has some killer lines in it. Oh, well. Ours is not to wonder why, ours is but to meme or die.

Speaking of which, like an online Typhoid Mary, I'm now supposed to pass the meme on to my friends. (Short aside. At my high school, the following words were painted on the gym wall: "SCHOOL SPIRIT IS CONTAGIOUS...LET'S HAVE AN EPIDEMIC!" Needless to say, I was the sort of kid who had no problem thinking of "school spirit" as an infectious disease, and I managed to remain safely inoculated all the way through graduation.)

Here's who I'm tagging:

Kevin Wignall
Brett Battles
John Schramm
Ed Gorman
Steven Torres

(I would've included my gal pal Sophie Littlefield, but it looks like she memed herself. Which is condemned by the Vatican, I think. Oh, and sorry for using the term "gal pal." I worked for People magazine one summer, and ever since I can't get that phrase out of my head.)

Sorry if this messes with your busy day, Kevin, Brett, John, Ed and Steven. But as the old saying goes: "Meme spirit is contagious...let's have an epidemic!"

Steve Hockensmith
April 23, 2008


Brett Battles

I hate you.

sophie Littlefield

it's only a venial sin, SH, so i should be okay :)

Kevin Wignall

Thank you, Steve! I'm not doing this properly, as in over at the Contemporary Nomad, because I just got in from a day in London and am feeling completely frazzled and loaded up on painkillers.

But the nearest book to me now is the recently read, "Spring Night" by Tarjei Vesaas (the great Norwegian writer of the 20th Century - a real revelation to me and I can't recommend him highly enough).

"He touched her.
'Dead? No. Why, should she be?'
Olaf stood silent. The man said:

You want to read it now, don't you?

Steven T.

Many thanks. How do you pronounce "meme"? I imagine it to be like a soprano warming up with "me, me, me!"

So I've been me!me'd?

John Schramm

Thaks Steve! Now you are forced to go look at my blog. :o)

Go see the complete entry here:

But the lines are:
Amanda, sullen: "Fuck you too, Lisey."
"If you want to come back home, I wouldn't use a lot of those words on the doc who treats your hands."


Praise God it wasn't me...though I'm reading Lois McMaster Bujold now.

See you Sunday at LA Festival of Books!


"Dead? No. Why, should she be?"

I like that! The only problem is I'll *never* remember a name like Tarjei Vessas. Norwegian? It sounds more like a Romulan.

Steven, I rhyme "meme" with "theme" my head, anyway. Lord knows this has never come up in face to face human conversation. I kinda like the idea of it sounding like "Mimi" though. "I've been Mimi'ed." Sounds a lot sexier, doesn't it?

Went to your site to see what book that was from, John, and have to admit I'm so dense I didn't figure it out even with the obvious clue in the dialogue. Some detective I'd make.

And I've never gotten around to Lois McMaster Bujold, Lee, but I think of her as respectable enough. As respectable as *me*, anyway. Probably more so. Which makes me wonder...what have you and Brett Battles got on your desks that you're so ashamed of? Letters to Penthouse?


John Schramm

A really bad detective. The title and author is right there on my site page, silly!

It's LISEY'S STORY, by Stephen King

I thought it was pronounced "mee mee."

Lee Ann

Desk? what desk? I'm a PE teacher - we don't get no stickin' desks...i have a box on wheels (aka "The Roly Poly").

It has scrunchies, chalk, box o'pencils, a rubber ball I confiscated (I keep forgetting to return it), a bottle or two of water (neither of which are mine), some melted trail mix, a deflated volleyball (has a hole in it - don't ask me how it got there), a $5.00 ball inflator, a Mike Lupica book (for one of my students), four clipboards, several stopwatches (none that work), and a purple whistle.

I'd kill for a desk.

The comments to this entry are closed.