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May 12 2014

Monday Miscellany: Wendy Darling, Developmental Psych, Depp

1. “Give me princesses who ride around, slaying dragons, or mounting them and claiming the sky.

Imagine this:
Wendy Darling becomes a pilot as soon as she comes of age,
because she was always going to find a way to fly,
and night after night sitting by the windowsill never got her anywhere
other than the ground.
When told of her curse, Sleeping Beauty goes in search of a spindle.

Imagine this:
Instead of mounting the land with her feet full of needles, Ariel watches as her lover slides into the ocean with his legs blurring into scales.
One night, Belle finds herself growing a set of fangs and a coat of shaggy fur to match her Beast’s, and finds that she prefers jagged claws to blunt fingernails.

2. “I could tell immediately he wasn’t fit for developmental psych research.” I am SO PLEASED by the number of people who saw fit to send this to me.

3. I had a terrible time finding a pull quote from this article by Stephanie on negotiating intimacy in work settings. So I’ll settle for a large block-o-text and strong encouragement to go read the rest of it. (See! I even linked you twice!)

So after all that, and everything else that’s been said, what’s left to talk about? Maybe the fact that every single time a discussion like this occurs, someone wants to know when compliments are appropriate. Sure, the temptation is there to dismiss the questions as distractions from the discussion at hand, but it is a real question for many people. Some of those comments are honest cris de coeur. And the conflicting responses, plus the occasional “never outside a relationship” aren’t helpful.

The real answer is both blindingly simple and incredibly difficult in practice: it’s negotiable.

Personal compliments are like touch, like nicknames and entrusted secrets. They’re an intimacy. They’re something that entails giving up a little bit of our personal integrity by letting someone in.

Intimacies are a good thing. We build relationships by exchanging these small pieces of ourselves and by treating them well. We build trust out of intimacies.

But intimacies also require trust, and they’re not something we can or want to share with everyone. If you’ve ever wondered why someone considers it infantilizing to be on the receiving end of an unwanted intimacy, just think about that relative–I don’t know which relative it was for you, but we’ve all had one–who wouldn’t stop calling you by your childhood nickname even after you graduated from high school, or who tried to smooth down your hair after you spent all that time getting it to do that.

4. My Myers-Briggs type is exactly this. (I wrote a little bit more about why–though very hurriedly–during Blogathon last year)

5. But what does the end of humanity mean for me?

Sometimes Stephen Hawking writes an article that both mentions Johnny Depp and strongly warns that computers are an imminent threat to humanity, and not many people really care.

6. I’m terrible at remembering the difference between Type I and Type II errors. This might fix it.

 

4 comments

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  1. 1
    suttkus

    Way back, the Muppet Show did a performance of Beauty and the Beast, all done in dance without words, between Lesley Ann Warren (I think) and Sweetums. At the end, it is Ms. Warren who transforms to match Sweetums and they go off happily ever after.

    That one has always stuck in my memory.

  2. 2
    fentex

    There’s a short story “Wendy Darling R.F.C” that I read some time ago which ends with Wendy flying off into combat in WW1 if I recall correctly. I remember it being quite a sad story with a down beat ending.

  3. 3
    fentex

    Sometimes Stephen Hawking writes an article that both mentions Johnny Depp and strongly warns that computers are an imminent threat to humanity, and not many people really care.

    I’ve always been queasy about A.I – not because the machines are any kind of threat (we’re a long, long way from building an infrastructure that makes that so) but because of the morality.

    If you believe you’ve built a self aware machine, how can you ever turn it off?

  4. 4
    lpetrich

    I score INTJ in Myers-Briggs tests, though in one of them, I was close to INTP. I think that the MBTI could be useful if it was regarded as a continuum, not as a set of 16 types. However, there’s the problem that different tests will likely produce different positions on the four MBTI dimensions.

    As to personality features, the OCEAN “Big Five” is supposed to be a better model, and some of the MBTI does have good correlations with some OCEAN dimensions. But even OCEAN ought to be considered a continuum.

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