How Memes Became Weapons in the Culture Wars

So it breaks these regions in the US down, and then goes through their entire history of the characteristics and struggles of their people. I think that there are some people who have said that it’s a simplistic explanation of some of these stereotypes of people, but it’s a very good jumping-off point to understand how hundreds of years and thousands of years of history can come and create different cultures within a single nation.

LG: American Nations. All right. Those are great recommendations. Thank you.

MC: Yeah, and now I know why crab cakes and lobster rolls are so popular in San Francisco.

ED: There you go.

LG: Mike, what’s your recommendation?

MC: So this one is a little bit on-topic because I’m going to send you to Reddit, the birthplace and proving ground of many memes out there in the world. So there’s this fun little Easter egg inside Reddit, and it’s called r/random. If you go to reddit.com/r/random, it redirects you automatically to a random subreddit. So it’s not actually a subreddit. It’s a redirection engine. You go from r/random to anywhere on Reddit, and it really just shows all kinds of stuff. So Lauren just typed it in, and she landed on the AirPods Pro subreddit. I just clicked on it because I have it set as a bookmark on my browser, and I landed on the r/Poland Reddit, subreddit.

So this is what I would recommend that you do. I recommend that you make it a bookmark on your browser bar, because when you’re just bored and you need five minutes of distraction, and you just want something to look at that’s not the infinite spiral of doom known as social media, you can just go to r/random, and it will drop you into a section of Reddit that maybe hasn’t seen any action in six months, or maybe has millions of subscribers and it’s really interesting, maybe is a section of culture that you’ve never experienced before and never would have experienced like Blade and Soul, which looks like a game. Lauren, what is that you just …

LG: Yeah, I just entered it again. It’s a Korean fantasy martial arts massively multiplayer online role playing game, otherwise known as MMORPG, developed by NCSoft’s team Bloodlust. If I sound like I know what I’m talking about, it’s because I just read that out loud from the website.

MC: You read that on the description. See? There you go. Something that you never knew about that you now found because of this randomness machine. So that’s my recommendation. Check it out. Make a bookmark for r/random.

LG: That’s pretty good.

MC: Thanks.

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ED: I love that. It reminds me of the Wikipedia option to go to any random Wikipedia page.

MC: Absolutely. So, Lauren, your turn. You’re the host. What’s your recommendation?

LG: I admit,when I came up with this recommendation and I jotted it down in our weekly podcast script, Mike, I wondered if I was perhaps stealing it from you, because I recommend White Lotus on HBO Max.

MC: Yes.

LG: Yeah. Mike and I are both fans of the show. Emily, have you had the chance to check this one out yet?

ED: No. I saw people talking about it on Twitter and was like, “OK. Good. Apparently there’s a new show I can watch,” but I know nothing about it.

LG: Yeah. When you take some time off after you’re all done with this, the book project, you should definitely check out this show. As I say often, if anyone needs an HBO login, let me know. I give it out freely. I think that’s why HBO didn’t send me the press kit this year that they normally send people, because I saw people tweeting about that, and I was like, “Where is my kit?” But anyway, yeah, it’s a fantastic show about a group of extremely privileged people who descend upon a Hawaiian luxury resort. These people don’t all know each other necessarily, but they traveled in the same boat together, and then they are at the same resort together. So they keep running into each other at the pool, and on the beach, and whatnot. They’re interacting with the staff at the resort, who are more diverse and presumably don’t have … Their incomes are not as high as the people who are vacationing at the resort.

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