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comment by ThatFanficGuy
ThatFanficGuy  ·  1780 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Dear Hubski, what are your most recent bookmarks?

My latest bookmark is Lichess.org, a free online chess platform with chess modes I didn't know existed. I've found myself drawn to chess partly because smart people are supposed to play chess, and people have been pressing me to be smart because I've shown some abilities beforehand, and partly because it offers to teach foresight through play, which is a great opportunity for someone who doesn't have it developed. I visit it almost daily, to play a game or two against computers: other people give it a lot of thought, which, for me, is still strange.





Shubhang  ·  1780 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    drawn to chess partly because smart people are supposed to play chess

Interesting to note. Does this stem from a belief to be a part of the "smart" community. I very many times have insecurities of being smart or not so I bury myself in topics (like pop psychology) to get the social gratification of being "smart". It's just that I want to be more like the people I consider "smart".

I am not saying that the above applies to you, i am just curious whether the thinking is similar as to why we get attracted to "smart" communities and our desires to be in them. (Hey, STEM circle-jerks are fun)

What other topics do you consider to be "smart" topics? For me neuroscience and programming comes into mind.

ThatFanficGuy  ·  1780 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    I very many times have insecurities of being smart or not so I bury myself in topics (like pop psychology) to get the social gratification of being "smart".

You've answered the main question perfectly on your own. I'll just add that it stems from a deeper cause: for us to fit into the tribe, whichever tribe it is that we want to belong to. Being accepted feels good, and being cast off feels terrible. It is, of course, a more complex and interesting topic than that, but I'll leave researching it to you because I don't have the energy to dive into it.

Finding an intellectual equal and enjoying their company is one thing; circle-jerks are another. They're both gratifying in nature, but where one moves you towards thoughtful discussions and rewards you for using your intellect, whatever it rises towards, for good, circle-jerking is using your intellect as a pedestal to make yourself appear to be bigger, more important than those puny stupid other humans, which promotes inequality and swelled egos for the jerkers and anti-intellectual ideas for their targets. Needless to say, neither is helpful or useful.

As for "smart" topics -- Here, in Russia, knowing a second language is considered to be a sign of a clever person; a third language and beyond will make many people talk about you in awe. Things like advanced natural sciences are perceived as beyond the ability of a normal human being; where I live, even knowing physics rings a nerd alert - which is to say, I don't live in an academic neighbourhood. From that pattern, you may figure out the rest.

tnec  ·  1780 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It's similar to how artists have artistic influences. You see someone you respect has a certain trait or behaves a certain way. In order to be more like them, you feel compelled to copy that trait.

tnec  ·  1780 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I like the chess puzzles on that site.