Some memes are easy to detach because they do not fit in with the UC’s overall bundle of strings and chords. One may, for example, forget a foreign film as soon as it is over because its memes do not bond well with the observer’s meme bundle.
Some memes are very difficult to detach once they are acquired because their vibratory pattern is so intense—the glamorous seduction of the cigarette or the chemical allure of the crack pipe, for example. Emotionally evocative memes such as victimhood or jealousy are difficult to detach due to the intense synergistic coupling of thoughts and emotion. Unwanted memes must be detached through an effort of will, either through conscious disuse or by acquiring a competing, more desirable meme. The Alcoholics Anonymous meme chord, for example, has successfully replaced alcoholic meme patterns for many drinkers.
A unit of consciousness may pick up entire chords of associated memes, but it is also common to pick and choose among individual strings. “Happy Marriage” is a complex meme chord that means different things to different people, depending upon their selection of particular strings. One prospective couple may resonate to the “Big Wedding” meme and so expect to invoke that meme at the outset of the Happy Marriage. Another couple may not be holding on to that memetic string and so do not need or want a big wedding. For most couples, the Happy Marriage chord includes a house full of children; other couples do not resonate to the offspring meme, so no children are necessary. For many couples, the “Bouncing Baby” meme may be adequately invoked by the “Man’s Best Friend” dog meme.
Every unit of consciousness holds on to a unique bundle of memes that informs their every decision.