Letting Friendships Die

I have heard more stories about dying friendships than I thought. Someone I know would tell me that they dreaded the idea of seeing someone, because they didn’t enjoy the stories that the person tells or, for that matter, how the person behaves. I have to ask them why they bother hanging out with that person if they don’t enjoy spending time with them and the answer almost always comes back the same — they have known them for a great number of years (15, 20, sometimes more) and they don’t want to ruin a long friendship after everything that they have been through.

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Miracle Myth Memes and the Propagation of Hope in Wen Chuan

The recent earthquake in Wen Chuan, China gives us a moment to reflect on our mortality in sorrow, express a renewed appreciation for being alive, and an opportunity to learn how we grieve and how we always try to look for stories of hope in the propagation of news from a disaster site.

I call those propagated stories of incredible survival — “Miracle Myth Memes” — and they are a fascinating cultural salve against the unthinkable.

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