Oct. 17th, 2009

lihtox: (Default)
I really hate conflict, but you would have a hard time telling that from my behavior, because I have a stupid compulsion for expressing my opinion whenever I disagree with someone. Or worse, to play the Moderate or the Devil's Advocate, to challenge every generalization with a skeptical cock of the eyebrow. Online, it gets me into heated conversations which I loathe, until I finally am disgusted enough to close the tab on my browser or, more dramatically, avoid that website altogether. (I also end up posting drive-by opinions on comment sections which I will never visit again: this seems silly but it's probably better for my psyche.) I'm not a flamer, but I can be annoying when I latch onto some small element of a comment and respond to that, rather than respond to the post as a whole, and of course I'm not always the target audience anyway.

It's not just online, though. I've gotten myself into hours-long debates with people in which I can't concede defeat, and yet suffer through every minute. Some people confuse my propensity for debating with a love for debating; meanwhile I which I could just shut up. :) Even if I hold them in, though, opinions can ruin things for me: part of the reason I got so exasperated with the Catholic Church is because I couldn't go to Mass without critiquing the liturgy, the music, and of course any political message which might happen to slip into the sermon.

Isaac Asimov wrote that while he was in the army, he came to the realization that it was not his job to educate everyone he met, if he overheard someone making a comment which was wrong. Maybe all of his books were his way to direct his drive for explanation to a willing audience. Me, I'm more like the XKCD cartoon: "I can't go to bed yet; someone is wrong on the Internet!"

Sigh. Probably why I like math so much: for the most part, if you come up with something new to say, you can prove that it's true, and not have to "agree to disagree".

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lihtox

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