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Topics - Mesozoic Mister Nigel

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The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / I did this for you
« on: September 23, 2014, 12:18:22 am »
If someone gives someone a gift that they did not ask for and do not want, was the gift really for the recipient, or was it really for the giver?

...that in Portland, there is a store that sells frisbees.

JUST frisbees.


So here's a thought.

Many people seem convinced that the amenities and relative ease of modern life are going to make us -- or in fact, are already making us -- dumber as a species.

However, many social neuroscience researchers think that our high intelligence is a direct result not of overcoming hardships, but of our extremely large (compared to other species) social networks. 

Modern social networks are vastly larger and more complex, with many more tiers of interaction, than social networks have ever been at any time in the past. It stands to reason that people who are better able to manage these huge social networks, and thus manage the multitude of associations between people and contexts, will be more liked, will be able to exploit potentially lucrative connections, will be more successful and thrive better, and ultimately will be more numerous, than those who are less able.

Therefore, if the social network hypothesis of intelligence is correct, over time the relative ease of our lives and technology which allows us to expand our social networks may ultimately make our species significantly more intelligent.

In other words, Facebook might be making us smarter.

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Kim Kierkegaardashian
« on: September 06, 2014, 03:19:23 am »
This shit is FUCKING FUNNY.

Aneristic Illusions / Fuck you, bitch
« on: September 06, 2014, 03:14:05 am »
I don't know if this really belongs in this sub, but it ties into some topics we've discussed here at length, and I thought the last sentence was particularly keen. I think it also stood out for me because earlier this week, a woman on Facebook went apeshit at me because I didn't think she was funny, and busted out "nigger bitch" and references to lynching a dozen or so times.

Thought I'd share here, because you guys are pretty fucking smart and I wondered what your take on it is.

I’m on an arbitrary crosswalk on an arbitrary Sunday in Chicago when it happens. He’s in his early 40′s, nicely dressed. As we head in opposite directions, elbows almost bumping, he leans into my space, face inches from mine and hisses, “Fuck you, bitch.” He keeps walking, and I stop dead in the middle of the street, hoping someone else just saw that.

It’s the “bitch” that kept swinging through the revolving door in my brain as I walked the half mile home. Why did he call me that? I didn’t do anything to him, I didn’t say anything to him, I didn’t even look at him. Was I supposed to smile? A random “fuck you” might just be the standard cost of living in a large city where you encounter the occasional unstable citizen, but the “bitch” added insult to injury.

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Academia Ghetto Thread
« on: September 05, 2014, 04:51:06 pm »
I thought this could be a place where we have our geeky school-related conversations.

Related: I got all my books for school.

Two classes for my bio major, one class for my psych major, and one class for both.

Or Kill Me / Dispelling a few myths
« on: July 13, 2014, 07:46:06 am »
I'd really like to post this on Facebook, but that would be undiplomatic so I'll post it here instead.

1. I'm not underestimating myself. My worries about my ability to tackle a challenge to my own standards are based in a realistic assessment of the degree of difficulty of the challenge, my own abilities, and the other demands of my day-to-day life. If I'm worried about being able to pull off a task I've set for myself, it's because it's fucking hard.

2. Related to #1, I do not suffer from impostor syndrome. Bitch, please. I can't even. What are you talking about. However, I do frequently push the limits of my capabilities, because how the fuck else would I improve myself?

3. I don't have a poor body image. The fact that I'm aware that I'm 20 pounds overweight, far from Barbie-Doll looks, and not as pretty as I was when I was 25 doesn't mean I'm somehow unaware that I'm nonetheless blessed in the aesthetic department.

4. I don't give any fucks if you disagree. In fact, I secretly think you're just saying that because of your own insecurities. I won't try to appearance-shame you back, though, because I'm better than that. I also don't think that being fuckable is the best thing I have to offer the world, and it's not the best thing you have to offer the world, either. Even if you are kind of an idiot.

5. Which brings me to my last point, which is that if you are trying to exploit some kind of perceived weakness in my self-image regarding my competency or appearance, you're not only an asshole, you're an idiot. I'll probably forgive you, though, because stupid people are worthy of compassion and my one real, vulnerable insecurity is the fear that I am insufficiently compassionate.

I'm working on that, though.

It seemed to me that we could really use a thread like this. I'll go first:

Me: My housemate says his pants fell down at the gas station while he was holding a bottle of beer and a bottle of wine.
BF: Oh I like him already.
Me: Now he's in the kitchen with his guitar singing a song about sausages.

Techmology and Scientism / Hey Pent
« on: June 24, 2014, 12:35:17 am »

Techmology and Scientism / CAIN CAIN CAIN CAIN CAIN
« on: June 23, 2014, 10:47:07 pm »
I can't remember if I posted a link to the Coursera class I'm taking because apparently I decided that my academic load wasn't challenging enough. But anyway, I started it, and I immediately thought "OH SHIT, CAIN WOULD LOVE THIS!"

I know you're way the fuck too busy to check it out this summer, but I thought I'd post the link in case you want to look at it in the future.

Techmology and Scientism / Run for your brain
« on: June 16, 2014, 07:30:35 pm »
Hey Pent, you in particular might like this:

I'm trying to get into this guy's lab next summer, because he's awesome.

While trolling the PSU website for pictures of my professors to make sure I haven't accidentally made out with any of them, I ran into this very interesting piece of recent research:

In a pilot study funded by the NITC Small Starts program, researchers explored whether drivers behave differently toward pedestrians waiting to use a crosswalk based on the pedestrian’s race. The study – the first examining the effects of race on pedestrian crossing experiences – found that black pedestrians were passed by twice as many cars and waited nearly a third longer to cross than white pedestrians.

Minorities are disproportionately represented among pedestrian fatalities in the United States. The Center for Disease Control reported in 2013 that in the first decade of this century, the fatality rates for black and Hispanic men were twice as high as they were for white men.

Researchers Kimberly Barsamian Kahn and Tara Goddard of Portland State University, and Arlie Adkins, of the University of Arizona, hypothesized that if minority pedestrians experience more delay at crosswalks, they might take greater risks when crossing – risks that could contribute to the disparate fatality rates.

I don't know how I feel about Mark Manson, as generally speaking I don't think much of people who write for Thought Catalog and I feel like his social theory is still pretty undeveloped, but this was an interesting article:

In 1998, a high school junior named Eric Harris from Colorado wanted to put on a performance, something for the world to remember him by. A little more than a year later, Eric and his best friend Dylan Klebold would place bombs all over their school — bombs large enough to collapse large chunks of the building and to kill the majority of the 2,000 students inside — and then wait outside with semi-automatic weapons to gun down any survivors before ending their own lives.

“It’ll be like the LA riots, the Oklahoma bombing, WWII, Vietnam, Duke and Doom all mixed together,” Eric wrote in his journal. “Maybe we will even start a little rebellion or revolution to fuck things up as much as we can. I want to leave a lasting impression on the world.”

Eric was a psychopath, but he was also smart.

Reminded me of some thoughts I was having about bullying, and how in some cases it can be a warning sign that there is something amiss with the reported victim of the bullying.

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Shit TGRR Says
« on: June 09, 2014, 08:03:44 pm »
To be used when appropriate.

Common TGRR aphorisms:

It could have happened to anyone, really.
Nobody go in the kitchen for like 10 years, okay?
I'M OKAY WITH THAT! (about something that is clearly not okay)
Underwear is an indication that you aren't really serious about having a good time.
A hornet in the shorts is worth AAAAAAFUCKFUCKFUCK


Sorry, I didn't catch that, I was staring at your tits.  ---> Usually said to TGRRW to get out of trouble for the kitchen thing.
I already farted for you, what the hell do you WANT from me?

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