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In the pre-media world, we bumped into fables, or news from across the village, but mostly, our role models and experiences were based on reality.

Now, when it’s not unusual to spend eight hours a day surrounded by media fueled by greatest hits (worst offender, breaking news, richest investor, evillest husband, funniest line of all the movies ever made) we start to imagine that only hyperbole matters.

Greatest hits, by their nature, are unusual. And if the media you’re absorbing is selected from a billion possible clips, don’t be surprised if you start to believe that the unusual is normal.

It’s not.