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Shock and info-terror

Shock and info-terror
March 31, 2011, 09:23:44 PM
I presume this has been answered several times in isolated cases (or perhaps somewhere else on the main site?), so I apologize for the lack of resourcefulness. Alas, this is more related to day-to-day dealings with the people in your geographic location.

When you meet people who you perceive to be useless whom you would normally end up avoiding, but for one reason or another (curiosity, they are your friends' friend, etc.) end up getting the opportunity to talk to and accept this fate for a temporary time frame under the hope that this endeavor won't be entirely useless, you tend to think of methods to get rid of them or failing that, engaging them in topics that aren't inane. I had the misfortune to be invited to sit with these fellows the other day (two of whom I knew from the gym) and realized that I normally tell them I have prior obligations and thus cannot accept their offer before this even happens. But at the prospect that perhaps I was being too cynical with others, I thought I'd give them a chance and see them as individuals.

Of course, the probability was slim and they ended up conforming to the mold: trite babble about inside-jokes (which naturally made me feel left out) and entertainment (most of which I avoid) coupled with the exasperating attitude they had towards conversation: frankly, that topics and ideas should just be thrown out of their mouths as fast as possible, every opinion heard and their duration and significance minute. Because, life's a joke right? Topics of racism were brought up facetiously, but since everyone was oh-so-witty and sarcastic, nothing anyone said was taken seriously. They talked about both sluts and "damaged goods" rather fatalistically as if all women were like this and should be treated this way (and of course, life has no meaning so we should just use them as fuck-dolls). There was even a brief philosophical discussion, which to my expectations revealed their solipsistic/fatalistic/hedonistic tendencies. These fellows just loved to talk about nothing at all.

All the while I was trying to find something at least vaguely useful/interesting/engaging to break the trend of stupidity emanating from their direction. And I had nothing. Potentially fruitful conversations were cast aside in favor of Bruce Lee vs. Chuck Norris comparisons.


When you fellows find yourselves in such a situation, do you tend to make up an excuse to leave (having failed to do so initially) or do you act sincerely insincere and accepting of the conflict that will arise? If the latter, then how do you manage to indirectly engage others?

Re: Shock and info-terror
March 31, 2011, 10:17:26 PM
I don't know about you but...
I. Love. Listening.
The more people talk the more you can read between the lines and identify their true character.

Re: Shock and info-terror
April 01, 2011, 12:30:30 AM
Those situations have been coming up less and less frequently for me - at the same time, I've gained a better appreciation for them. If you want advice, here's mine: chill the fuck out. You don't need to save the world, and even if you do, being a negativistic, antisocial egotist is the most ineffective way of accomplishing that. You are right in thinking that this has come up before. To wit:
Quote
Inconsequential bullshit is what quality socializing is made up of. Ironically, by calling it that, you couldn't see past what it really was. The inconsequential bullshit itself is superficial, the human bonding that underpins it is the crucial and important feature of socializing. You shouldn't be seeking to learn something practical from every encounter, that destroys human meaning.
and:
Quote
Simply put, I should take all of the best and worthwhile qualities (dedication, loyalty, ect..) from family and friends, and disregaurd all of the meaningless values (love thy neighbour blah blah blah) by which most of these qualities stemmed from.  It makes perfect sense now that I'm typing it out and seeing it in black and white.
Learn to relax. There's an enormous difference between having a misanthropic disdain for a substandard existence lead you into inspiring greatness in yourself and others, and simply being a spiteful loser who hates people because they like dumb shit. A couple of weeks ago I semi-trolled a couple of friends of mine by stating that ARE YOU TALKIN TO ME? is moron music, and this caused a semi-uproar, but I only did that because we already had strong social bonds from many previous encounters and also because it was just for my entertainment - I wasn't actually expecting to EDUCATE anyone. To my surprise, after only a few minutes their appreciation for the band had begun to slightly diminish. Had I been all blood & thunder, serious discourse on the evils of white trash music, and how I've come to appreciate better music(thus implying, intentionally or not, that *I* was better than them as a person), I would have accomplished absolutely nothing but self-ostracization. Setting it up as a purposefully incendiary joke, and thus a casual comment made only half-seriously, evidently made them more receptive to it. Point being, learn how to operate within the confines of the world in which you live. Fantasizing about how the world SHOULD be will do nothing on its own. Provide an example which others will find appealing, and they'll follow in time - that is to say, actions speak louder than words, especially if those words do nothing but alienate your peers. Be relentless in mind, patient in action. A more specific tip: learn to be funny. If you can make people laugh, they'll willingly listen to absolutely anything you say, even if it's trite. If all you can do is make them groan, they'll quickly learn to tune you out regardless of the merit of your statements.

Re: Shock and info-terror
April 01, 2011, 03:30:28 AM
I don't know about you but...
I. Love. Listening.
The more people talk the more you can read between the lines and identify their true character.

This is what I usually enjoy doing, but at some point people begin to wonder why you're just sitting there.

Learn to relax. There's an enormous difference between having a misanthropic disdain for a substandard existence lead you into inspiring greatness in yourself and others, and simply being a spiteful loser who hates people because they like dumb shit. A couple of weeks ago I semi-trolled a couple of friends of mine by stating that ARE YOU TALKIN TO ME? is moron music, and this caused a semi-uproar, but I only did that because we already had strong social bonds from many previous encounters and also because it was just for my entertainment - I wasn't actually expecting to EDUCATE anyone. To my surprise, after only a few minutes their appreciation for the band had begun to slightly diminish. Had I been all blood & thunder, serious discourse on the evils of white trash music, and how I've come to appreciate better music(thus implying, intentionally or not, that *I* was better than them as a person), I would have accomplished absolutely nothing but self-ostracization. Setting it up as a purposefully incendiary joke, and thus a casual comment made only half-seriously, evidently made them more receptive to it. Point being, learn how to operate within the confines of the world in which you live. Fantasizing about how the world SHOULD be will do nothing on its own. Provide an example which others will find appealing, and they'll follow in time - that is to say, actions speak louder than words, especially if those words do nothing but alienate your peers. Be relentless in mind, patient in action. A more specific tip: learn to be funny. If you can make people laugh, they'll willingly listen to absolutely anything you say, even if it's trite. If all you can do is make them groan, they'll quickly learn to tune you out regardless of the merit of your statements.

I don't have a misanthropic disdain for existence. On the contrary, I am trying to learn how to relax and be more social because I believe there is something to be gained from that. I know I can't have a meaningful conversation with everyone and so I don't bother all out attacking anyone. That said, I find that I can connect much more readily and effectively when I'm alone with someone. Group situations on the other hand tend to make me a little more anxious.

Re: Shock and info-terror
April 01, 2011, 07:12:59 AM
In that case, all I can say is practice makes perfect. Trite but true. Give it time.

Re: Shock and info-terror
April 06, 2011, 12:59:11 PM
When you meet people who you perceive to be useless whom you would normally end up avoiding, but for one reason or another (curiosity, they are your friends' friend, etc.) end up getting the opportunity to talk to and accept this fate for a temporary time frame under the hope that this endeavor won't be entirely useless, you tend to think of methods to get rid of them or failing that, engaging them in topics that aren't inane.

In my experience, it's best to talk about whatever they want to talk about. By the very nature of your outlook on life, not meaning a yes/no about what's important, but about how you derive what's important, you'll change conversation. You don't have to try. If they have potential, they'll move farther along the path to knowledge. If not, nothing can change them, so just socialize and realize that they may not get your trip, but if you're nice to them, they'll grant your trip legitimacy among others.

Most of the people around me want to discuss sports, TV and sex/shopping/technology. That's alright by me. I know little about these topics, but hang in as best I can. These people aren't bad... they're just misguided, in the grips of a bad system. Every body has a brain and organs; our society has no brain. Not everyone needs to try to be brain cells. In fact, the stomach should be talking about food/shopping/sports and other good gustatory things. But if new brain cells arrive, they need to make connections to the organs somehow, and not by faux elitism and scorn toward the organs' favorite activities...

All IMHO, non-critcal

Re: Shock and info-terror
April 06, 2011, 01:20:10 PM
When you meet people who you perceive to be useless whom you would normally end up avoiding, but for one reason or another (curiosity, they are your friends' friend, etc.) end up getting the opportunity to talk to and accept this fate for a temporary time frame under the hope that this endeavor won't be entirely useless, you tend to think of methods to get rid of them or failing that, engaging them in topics that aren't inane.

In my experience, it's best to talk about whatever they want to talk about. By the very nature of your outlook on life, not meaning a yes/no about what's important, but about how you derive what's important, you'll change conversation. You don't have to try. If they have potential, they'll move farther along the path to knowledge. If not, nothing can change them, so just socialize and realize that they may not get your trip, but if you're nice to them, they'll grant your trip legitimacy among others.

Most of the people around me want to discuss sports, TV and sex/shopping/technology. That's alright by me. I know little about these topics, but hang in as best I can. These people aren't bad... they're just misguided, in the grips of a bad system. Every body has a brain and organs; our society has no brain. Not everyone needs to try to be brain cells. In fact, the stomach should be talking about food/shopping/sports and other good gustatory things. But if new brain cells arrive, they need to make connections to the organs somehow, and not by faux elitism and scorn toward the organs' favorite activities...

All IMHO, non-critcal
yep...one of the reasons i love listening is that at the bottom of the drivel it usually surfaces whether the person is nice or not. i would not want to be around someone who shares my views but is a self centered piece of shit.

If those people act like you need to rise to their level and know more about sports/shopping/sex/technology, then they're clearly assholes on top of being misguided.

Re: Shock and info-terror
April 06, 2011, 04:38:38 PM
If those people act like you need to rise to their level and know more about sports/shopping/sex/technology, then they're clearly assholes on top of being misguided.

Or just normal. Most people seem to need some reason to be better than everyone else, or they feel insignificant and mortal.

yep...one of the reasons i love listening is that at the bottom of the drivel it usually surfaces whether the person is nice or not.

True, although the nice/not-nice dichotomy obscures more fundamental ones, in my experience.

i would not want to be around someone who shares my views but is a self centered piece of shit.


Re: Shock and info-terror
April 07, 2011, 11:21:19 AM
When you meet people who you perceive to be useless whom you would normally end up avoiding, but for one reason or another (curiosity, they are your friends' friend, etc.) end up getting the opportunity to talk to and accept this fate for a temporary time frame under the hope that this endeavor won't be entirely useless, you tend to think of methods to get rid of them or failing that, engaging them in topics that aren't inane.

In my experience, it's best to talk about whatever they want to talk about. By the very nature of your outlook on life, not meaning a yes/no about what's important, but about how you derive what's important, you'll change conversation. You don't have to try. If they have potential, they'll move farther along the path to knowledge. If not, nothing can change them, so just socialize and realize that they may not get your trip, but if you're nice to them, they'll grant your trip legitimacy among others.

Most of the people around me want to discuss sports, TV and sex/shopping/technology. That's alright by me. I know little about these topics, but hang in as best I can. These people aren't bad... they're just misguided, in the grips of a bad system. Every body has a brain and organs; our society has no brain. Not everyone needs to try to be brain cells. In fact, the stomach should be talking about food/shopping/sports and other good gustatory things. But if new brain cells arrive, they need to make connections to the organs somehow, and not by faux elitism and scorn toward the organs' favorite activities...

All IMHO, non-critcal

Hurrah, I agree with you.

On a side note, isn't funny how much the actual topics can make or break these conversations - you note their solipsistic/hedonistic/decadent/etc tendencies, yet (and this is probably just some narcissism on my part coming through) when you are talking about 'original' ideas (i.e, really searching things out and thinking about them in depth) these tendencies can actually make for thoroughly wonderful conversations?

I don't really know what I'm trying to say by this (it's late and i actally did just have a really wonderful conversation with someone who i just met tonight about all sorts of films and novels and 'grimoires' so i'm probably just ranting on about that conversation).

I suppose just that question of in conversations can subject matter can manage to transcend the 'style' or method it's dealt with?