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Frida Calvo Huerta, age 17
"Just like myths, memes are a form of communication within the masses. The myth of the Flying Dutchman was seen as an omen of oncoming doom, predicting a shipwreck to the unlucky crew that set eyes upon it when in reality, it’s an optical illusion — a mirage that messes with a crew that had been lost for too long at sea. Monsters originate from fears, cautions, life stories, warnings, lessons to pass down. Memes often take situations out of context to satirize them. One of their many purposes, other than humor, is to act as defense mechanisms to deal with reality (which is often disappointing). For example, in a world where roughly the same amount of Americans believe in Bigfoot as they do the big bang theory, memes have become necessary so we can laugh about it instead of cry. Memes foster a sense of community; creating inside jokes in mass proportion, layering knowledge of the past and present. Memes have become the modern day versions of myths."