What's In a Meme? - Christine Kane

Picture this…

A stage in a big tacky theatre in Branson.

(Oh, what the hell, let’s say it’s my theatre. We’ll call it the Christine Theatre.)
I’m standing in a spotlight.

I’m wearing a sparkle-y lavender gown. (Halter-style, like Celine Dion prefers.)

Someone has done my hair. (Otherwise I couldn’t possibly do this show or have this theatre for that matter)

The stage is filled with that smoke-y fog that makes the lights look ultra-cool.

The orchestra strikes up a chord and I begin singing.


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Tears fill your eyes. This is your favorite song. (It HAS to be. Otherwise you wouldn’t be in Branson, now, would you?)

Now that the stage is set, allow me to explain what a “meme” is.

A “meme” is kind of a blogging virus. But in a good way.

It’s a blog idea that spreads among bloggers and spreads love and joy. (Love equals LINK in blogland. You LINK to other bloggers.)

Blogging is a tight community. Here’s an example: Recently, I found a blog that had plagiarized my work. A person had apparently hired a writer who had gone around and lifted other bloggers’ writings to create posts for this money making venture. I was more than a little freaked out. And I wrote to Liz Strauss, whom I adore. She jumped in, along with a few other bloggers, and the offending blogger removed the post and apologized hastily. This happened within a matter of hours after I let these bloggers know about this.

So, in some ways my little Branson scenario is serious. (Minus the gown, and the stage fog. I would, however, like to have my hair done nice. And my very own theatre.) Bloggers really do support each other.

And so this meme that’s going around is about linking and forming a network through the linking and the Google-ing and the Technorati-ing. If you still don’t understand, that’s okay. I just had a conversation with a promoter yesterday who said, “I read your blogs, but I don’t understand the blog world at all, and I don’t read any other blogs.” This is fine. But here’s your chance to look at a few other bloggers and what they’re doing. I’ve included my own favorites, too, but a special thank you goes out to Starbucker for being the first to add me to the list!

And then you can rush back out to Pier 1 to buy more fruity smelling Christmas candles…

Customers Rock!
Being Peter Kim
Pow! Right Between The Eyes! Andy Nulman’s Blog About Surprise
Billions With Zero Knowledge
Working at Home on the Internet
MapleLeaf 2.0
Hee-Haw Marketing
Scott Burkett’s Pothole on the Infobahn
Multi-Cult Classics
Logic + Emotion
Branding & Marketing
Popcorn n Roses
On Influence & Automation
Servant of Chaos
Presentation Zen
Dmitry Linkov
John Wagner
Nick Rice
CKs Blog
Design Sojourn
Frozen Puck

The Sartorialist
Small Surfaces
Africa Unchained
Marketing Nirvana
Bob Sutton
Hola! Oi! Hi!
Shut Up and Drink the Kool-Aid!
Women, Art, Life: Weaving It All Together
Community Guy
Social Media on the fly
Successful Blog
Instigator Blog
The Future of the Web
You Already Know This Stuff
Talking Story
Make It Great!
Simplicity Mary’s Blog
Carpe Factum
Ramblings from a Glass Half Full
Brain Based Biz
Home Business Wiz
Leading Questions
Web Metrics Guru
turned out
Purple Wren
Kristie T
Steve Olson
Christine Kane

  • christine

    Hi Everybody, and welcome back to blog for me! I am so far behind in comment responses here that I hope you will allow me just this one big thanks and hello and nod and all of that. I was away visiting my folks and sibs. And I scrolled up to see many many great thoughts and kind words. Much love to you all. And happy new year!

  • Gretchen Cawthon

    Christine – Branson? OMG – I was just telling my dad that he should see about booking you! My dad manages a theater in Branson and I mentioned that he should check out your music. In fact, I was visiting your site to get your contact information for him and the first thing I see is “A stage in a big tacky theatre in Branson.” LOL – that was just too funny!

    Have you ever been told you can’t because you’re a girl?

  • Jake

    Good to e-Meet you via this meme!

  • Dblwyo

    Ain’t the bloggly thing fun ? As it happens – just for your general fund of knowledge & ignoble, I mean ignorable otherwise, a MEME is an idea or concept that percolates like water thru porous rock over time. The original label was coined by Richard Dawkins – he of evolutionary biology fame – as an analogy to genes and was later converted into a popsci book. Other than boring you with all this – being easily amused – perhaps the importance is that blogs are all about memes and speed up the circulation, migration, sharing and mutation of interesting ideas. It also looks to me as if blogs are rapidly seperating out – as all good ecologies do – into a few winners, a larger number of players and a huge number of also-rans. There are so many it’s impossible to keep up without the linked networks of new ecologies – for example I found your blog thru an indirect site on Bob Sutton via Big Picture.

    So if your blog network can create value over and above ‘just’ your individual site that network will gain more power by generating larger sets of users consuming your memes, however tortuous the paths.

    BtW – judging from the cite of Sutton you might also find Seth Grodin’s blog on honest, value-based marketing to be directly useful and to say more than just it’s topics. πŸ˜‰

    Anyway for what it’s worth.

  • Phil Gerbyshak

    Thanks for the link and for keeping this meme alive Christine. You’ve got a wonderfully fun place around here, and you write some great stuff. I look forward to getting to know you better in 2007.

  • Ed Hutchison

    Like the music promoter, I only read your blogs, even though I know what blogging is. However, why don’t you let people share the love and link to a myspace page of yours too? There are almost as many myspace pages as blogs, and it would give the people who don’t blog another way to show their appreciation of you.

  • Sharon Sarmiento

    Hi Christine–Great blog you have! It’s amazing how for this meme is reaching. Thanks for paying it forward and passing on the link love (and including my blog, eSoup in the list).


  • severth siste

    I liked the list. I have checked out most of the blogs and found several that I will read on a regular basis. Thanks.

  • Terry Starbucker

    Hey Christine, I did a bad cut and paste job from Joe’s blog and missed some of the meme links – I did an amendment to my post so if you see any there that you missed too (because of me) that you could add back to the meme, that would be great. Thanks.

  • ChickiePam

    Hi Christine,
    I have our blog set up, but haven’t yet shown my business partner how to do it (she’s more artistic and I’m more techy) but we will soon join the world of bloggers! I might even blog some myself, since I do talk too much and that might channel some of that energy in a better way.

    I got my first ever “hair consultation” this week! It’s a big deal. She did color with the foil thingies in blonde and light red highlights so the gray won’t show so bad and I won’t have as much a problem with roots growing in. She used the most natural ingredients out there for hair color, and then layered my hair (to remove the damage from where I’ve been coloring it at home with chemicals) and now it’s all fluffy. I’ve always used a blow dryer and had straight, smooth hair. Now I have “bed hair”. And it’s easy to do, soft (and not sticky or stiff from hair gel) and in style! And the best part is that a man actually told me that it looks sexy! At 50, I still blushed and giggled. I liked it. Yes, a new doo, can give you a new lease on life!

    So now, I’ll go check out some other blogs. I knew there were other bloggers commenting on your site, but didn’t know how to get to theirs. I usually just have time to read yours and not do very much investigating. Maybe all those orange comments that really don’t say anything are links?!!! Cout it be true?! I have never clicked on one to find out. Guess I have to now or die from curiosity.

    Happy Holidays to all!

  • Caren

    Christine wrote: The next album I do will just be virtual, and it‚Δτll be implanted into the atmosphere and people will pay for it with their good thoughts!

    Then it’s already out! LOL When I do drum circles, occasionally I’ll start in with a traditional West African rhythm. West African rhythms normally have 2 or 3 traditional accompaniments, polyrhythms played with and over each other at the same time. I do this usually with folks with no knowledge of those rhythms, ’cause if people know them, they have certain associations with that rhythm and know the accompaniments, so it’s harder for them to play from their heart. 9888uuuuiiiiii9 – oops message from my cat to yours, I guess – Feo stepped on the keyboard. I’ve seen again and again when people are really tuned in to the drumming, going with the flow, they’ll begin playing the traditional accompaniment rhythm to the one I’m playing – even though they’ve never heard it before! I believe these rhythms that have been played for thousands of years are just a part of the Earth and the atmosphere, available anytime, and they just pull them from the air through their hearts into their hands.

    So – if I do zazen and open myself up to your energy, maybe I’ll start singing one of your songs! Complements iTunes very well, I think.

  • christine

    uh-oh. All of my Christmas shopping has made me fall behind in comments!

    Hi Jeffrey… Thanks for reminding us all of our roots. A year ago, I didn’t know any of this speak. You’ll catch on! (I love the bumpersticker you sent to me, by the way. It’s on my car now!) The next album I do will just be virtual, and it’ll be implanted into the atmosphere and people will pay for it with their good thoughts!

    HI Gavin, And thanks!

    Elizabeth, I fixed the link issue. You and I were melded together in that list. And WOW, I wish I could join you next week. I really do need a mini-retreat like that with powerful gals… Happy holidays to you as well! (I LOVE your drawing of twinkle lights, by the way!)

    MK, I aim to please. Babs and Sound of Music… What could be on the horizon next??

    Thanks Anne! And thanks Robyn! I’ll add you to my regular visits too…

    Starbucker… somehow I see Barry Gibb as a better match for you than Rush. (Of course, I already knew about your obsession with Yvonne Elliman…)

    Hey Ruth… I sent you a long email with every gift suggestion imaginable. (And there’s still time to send me that Vita-Mix blender too!) πŸ™‚

    Hey Sandy, Seems like EVERYONE is getting hair cuts. (Mine’s all long again, so I don’t much cut it anymore! I need an UP DO!) Thanks for stopping by…

    Hiya David… Oh No! A vacation without the computer! Give yourself three days to have withdrawal, then you’ll be fine. Have a great time!

  • David Jackson

    I joined the fun and posted the list on my blog too.

    Kathy and I head off Christmas Day to the world down-under. We will not take computers along, so I must leave my new MacBook Pro to languish. I feel more creative touching the keyboard.

  • Sandy Renshaw

    Hi Christine,

    Great post. I just got my hair cut yesterday. Makes all the difference in how I feel.

    Appreciate the link. I have to catch up on this meme stuff.

    Happy holidays.


  • Ruth

    This is slightly (well, OK, more than slightly) off topic, but I didn’t see another contact address …. anyway, I’m just wondering, what is on your wish list for the holidays? My husband is a new songwriter, and I’m trying to think of a good holiday gift for him that would relate to this… and I thought you might be a good person to ask!

  • Terry Starbucker

    Christine, you are most welcome, and thanks for pushing this along. If I may add to the “picture”, imagine me, hair slicked back, moustache and with a 70’s tuxedo, standing on a junior high school stage under a 60 watt bulb, belting out “Blogging Fever” in a Barry Gibb falsetto. (BTW, The only untrue part of that picture was the song, unfortunatley. The song was actually “Closer to the Heart” by Rush. Oy).

  • Robyn McMaster

    Hi Christine, I can just see myself coming out on your stage. Though I love drama and theatre I’ve never pictured myself on the stage and it was kind’a fun. Thanks for the link and I know it will be lots of fun to check in here and see what you’re up to. πŸ™‚

    Thanks for the link!

  • Anne

    Thanks for the link! I linked you back.

  • Elizabeth

    oops. I think the woolgathering link is broken, somehow.

  • mary katherine

    Gotta love a nicely placed Babs reference. πŸ™‚

  • Elizabeth

    Hey, Christine.

    Thanks for the link and the meme. It’s a great idea – I’ve been thinking about the way Technorati and the other blog-rankers reward those bloggers who are part of networks. I will find a way to weave the meme into a post tonight.

    And I loved your Branson fantasy. Hair is always key. In the words of the Waitresses’ otherwise forgettable second album, “Everything’s wrong if my hair is wrong.” (I did like “Wasn’t tomorrow wonderful” – which dates me, I know…) My hair is too short for an up-do – but I am getting it cut tomorrow!

    By way of making dreams real, some friends and I plan a mini art and career retreat for ourselves towards the end of next week. Wish you were nearer to Pittsburgh and could join us. Happy holidays!

  • Gavin Heaton

    The blog universe does take a little time to get used to Jeffrey. Great blog Christine! and thanks for the link!

  • Jeffrey Hunter

    I still haven’t figured out the whole trackback ping deal, or how to create a buzz with your blog short of adding some solid content. And now there’s this whole meme thing to futher confuse matters. Yikes! Oh well, I guess I’m just an analog guy living in a digital world.

    Will your next recording be released on vinyl or 8-track? πŸ˜‰

  • christine

    Hiya Caren, Thanks for the link. (And yes, there are LOTS o’ great blogs out there.)

    Chris… Well, here’s the deal: you haven’t lived til you’ve had an “up-do.” Sorry… a mere hair cut doesn’t do it anymore!

    Hi Doug, Glad to spread the love!

  • Doug Karr

    This has been an incredibly fun exercise and has increased my blog’s visibility a ton! Thanks so much for participating in spreading the word!

  • Chris Cree

    Christine, Gotta say that as a guy I never understood the hair thing. Until yesterday. I normally wear my hair fairly short, being ex-military and all. But things have been so incredibly insane that a haircut was very low on my priority list. It got long and shaggy, in my eyes. It was driving me nuts.

    I finally got it cut yesterday and was amazed at how good it felt, like taking a shower after a dirty hot day’s work. I think I may cut my wife a little more slack on that one from here on out!

  • Caren

    Had to google “blog meme”. Now I’m in the know! In doing that, I came across this blog, which lists lots of memes. Oh, boy! Another link! He’s got a story about his cat saving his life in one of his personal blog entries….