Trouble Thinking

April 20, 2011

Storm: Kind of Douchey, But For Real People Stop Believing Annoying BS

Filed under: Science — Tags: , , , — Durandal @ 2:40 pm

So I like this little poem/animation. And not just because the guy doing the reading has a dreamy voice.

It’s a 10-minute bitch by Tim Minchin about all those silly little nothings of non-science that we all tacitly support by not correcting that one friend/aunt/uncle/parent/co-worker who just insists upon the absolute transformation they went through after purchasing a $30 magnetic Hyper Healing Band to keep the blood flowing to their right hand, which has always bothered them.

It’s always bothered me that with the sheer vast amazing incomprehensible universe we’ve got the opportunity to take a peek at, people prefer close the curtains and write ‘I don’t know, magic?’ on them. And I don’t mean that you’re not allowed to have wrong hypotheses about things. I have a shitload of wrong hypotheses, even pet wrong hypotheses that are embarrassingly revealed to be about as solid as those doodles in my notebook I made when I was reading too many terrible 90’s comics. Yes, I still hold some affection for Raven Talon: Monster Slayer to the Stars, but there’s a point at which you have to be willing to look at your own work and admit that you didn’t really put in the hours to make it something solid.

I don’t think you’re dumb for believing that maybe aliens built the pyramids. I do think you’re dumb for believing that without bothering to pay any heed to the alternate explanations, and for doubling down  when challenged instead of adjusting to fit the available evidence.

Ideas that cannot stand up to mere conversation, much less debate, are probably not actually worth having. They’re just an excuse to get huffy. Plus, not being a gigantic wuss-pants about your ideas allows you to actually have a stable of of them instead of 2-3 horrible ones that you hold on to forever. It’s like writing or drawing, being able to fail over and over allows you to get better at formulating something with some real meat on it. Better to be continually embarrassed than stagnant.

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