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Memes the Joke of the new Millennium


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The internet is a void of information and contains a unique facet for communication. Having the massive database and a fast moving stream of information at high schoolers fingertips has been greatly influencing this generation’s connection to one another, no pun intended. These influences have taken form in social interaction, slang, but most interestingly humor.

One meme enthusiast at Topeka High, has an extensive background in memes. Grace Hatesohl, senior and forensicator once did an award winning inform on memes her sophomore year. She said, “There is memetic theory. Meme is an idea that can be transported. I had a speech on memes, it was on mimetic theory and how broad reaching it was.”

What Hatesohl is describing is the theory that outlines the powerful and innovative way a meme is developed. Richard Dawkins, a university of Oxford graduate, theorized that the flow of ideas follow Darwin’s theory of evolution and coined the word “Meme”; Memes are just pieces of information surviving and proliferating.

Having been sparked by the most recent Royalty of Courts game, there has been a heap of generated rivalrous memes from Topeka High about Shawnee Heights, and Topeka West about Topeka High. A trendy meme about the up and coming game between Shawnee Heights and Topeka High came out on the spirit day, meme day, which was a spirit wear day where Trojans dressed up as their favorite meme.

Another Meme queen, Nell Brennan, describes her popular meme which is based off of another trendy and global meme. The meme she created has received a great deal of attention and backlash. “I wanted to do it as a contest for meme day, but I didn’t think it would be funny in person. I was just talking with my friends and they thought it would be funny. I came up with it before meme day, but I made it on meme day.”

Hatesohl tells about Brennan’ inspiration for the meme, “the whole best school in the nation thing is just funny because they [Shawnee Heights students] get really worked up about being the best school nation, but they are definitely not. I think it’s is really funny how worked up they get and for a really long time they just wouldn’t shut up. We just poked fun.”

The meme delineates Topeka High as the best school in the nation, by shawnee heights portrayed as an angry girl. Brennan says, “I just take the best school in the nation as a joke. I am not trying to start a fight with anyone at Shawnee Heights. I was trying to make fun of Shawnee Heights and I did that by making them a meme.”

However, her meme was recreated by Topeka West after their win, a week after royalty of courts. The meme made by a Topeka West students portrays Topeka West as the best school in the nation, it was also prompted by Topeka West’s sign having been torn by a Topeka High student.

Brennan recounts the situation, “I thought it was funny, but sometimes people take things a little too seriously.I think the reason that topeka west made one similar because it’s  how we have humor. I think it’s funny to remake situation.”

Hatesohl reflects on the local creation from the original global meme, “this repetition of cultural ideas is what is keys to building society; memes are the foundation of our culture and society.”

India MacDonald, Tucker McCulloch, and Kara McClendon dress up as the meme during spirit week.

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Memes the Joke of the new Millennium