Memes, memes, they're good for your heart

Readers wonder, "Gene, you used to hate the word 'meme,' but now you use it. What happened? Sincerely yours, Confused in Tehachapi."

Here's the explanation: the original meaning, formulated Richard Dawkins, which had to do with some half-baked, pseudo-scientific notion of ideas being like genes, has been almost entirely wiped out by a new one, which is roughly, "Any idea that spreads quickly, without much examination."

And that new usage turns out to be quite handy!

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