September 22nd, 2004



Chronic remorse, as all the moralists are agreed, is a most undesirable sentiment. If you have behaved badly, repent, make what amends you can and address yourself to the task of behaving better next time. On no account brood over your wrongdoing. Rolling in the muck is not the best way of getting clean.

From the introduction to Brave New World.

Icon Post

As a few people have asked so far, I nicked this icon from here, after first asking permission.

If you're not sure what the fuss is about, then like me you've got animated GIFs set to 'not animate'

An inquiry into social habits

I've been thinking about personality types recently, most specifically the Myers/Briggs scale/Kiersey temperaments (where I'm a solid INTP every time). I've been mulling over why I'm introverted - and what this means. In discussion with green_amber it became obvious that I'm _not_ an introvert when amongst geeks, but I am when amongst pretty much everyone else. This seems odd, as introversion/extraversion is supposed to be a constant. 

Much thinking later, I came up with the following thinking about why people are introverted in the first place, and how they may come to be that way.  So when I'm talking about social situations I'm covering the whole range of them from hanging out with a close friend to being at a party with a load of people you don't know, to being in work with people who have a very disparate range of interests:

1) There is no absolute right/wrong, just what people like/don't like.
2) Therefore you can't logically expect people to either want the same things or have the same interests as you.
3) Therefore, if you want them to do the same things as you in social situations, or talk about the same things, then sometimes you'll need to provide an impetus for them to do so, offer your own compromises, talk about the things they're interested in, go along to the things they have an interest in.
4) This constant social negotiation involves empathising with others and seeing things from their point of view, to see what they want and how you can manage to achieve both that and what you personally want. This requires effort, less for some people, more for others (quite a lot for me, usually requiring a fair amount of thought).
5) The harder work people find it, the more like themselves their chosen group will have to be in order to minimise effort. They will tend to congregate with people who have similar hobbies, beliefs and approaches to life in order to not stress themselves out.
6) Some people don't find the social juggling hard hard - indeed they may not even see it as an effort - they get a buzz from being around people and don't really notice the subconscious juggling process.  We call these people extraverts.
7) Some people find the process very wearing - they tend to focus inwards instead, avoiding the stress that is social situations. If people find it hard to deal with people more than slightly different from themselves then we call them introverts.

Further thinking made me think that this can be simplified even further:

If you have interests that are unusual then you will tend to be around people who you have little in common with, and thus have problems dealing with 'people in general' rather than just the occasional person.  So it's not that geeks are naturally introverts, but that they are socialised into acting in a more introverted manner because the energy necessary to cope with the majority of people is higher for them.  If talking to people requires lots of compromise and effort then you'll associate socialising with that effort and be less inclined to do so.

Which leads me to wonder - are some people interested in unusual things, thus causing them to have problems dealing with others, causing introversion; or are some people naturally introverted, causing them to avoid being with other people and thus focussing on other things instead?

Gosh that was

some words
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Luke Skywalker: Terrorist

The closer one looks at the details of this event, the more apparent discrepancies one uncovers. For instance, within only 17 minutes of the 'second run' of the Death Star 'trench' being first broadcast on GNN, Moff Jerjerrod came forward with a list of the names of those 'most suspected' to be directly responsible for the attack. At the top of this list was, of course, the individual who the Emperor has come to refer to as "the atrocity Luke Skywalker". In the days that followed a media blanket began to cover events and the 'suspect' Luke Skywalker became the 'known perpetrator' Luke Skywalker, despite no official investigation taking place.

The Emperor promised the people that "The big evil bastard Luke Skywalker" would be found and bought to trial within weeks of the event. But, despite the Emperors promise to "wipe them out, all of them" and after two years of almost constant blanket bombing and extensive surface raids of the Hoth caves, no signs of Luke Skywalker have apparently surfaced.

Very nicely put together site here.
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