Apr
25
2008

Why you’re wrong about all that stuff. And why I’m right.

Um... if you say so: Well, no, not even then.
Um... if you say so: Well, no, not even then.Courtesy echovein.com
Remember how you said that grapes are good in pasta salad, and I said, no, they’re not, it’s like eating soggy little cat eyeballs?

I was right about that. You were wrong. Grapes in pasta salad are gross. You just like pasta salad so much that you can’t tell that you’re eating something like cold, swollen lymph nodes and bloated, dead wood ticks. Deal with it.

And you know how you’re all about Natalie Portman? Well you’re wrong about her too. You saw her in Star Wars, and you’ve got a weird space fetish thing brewing, and that’s cool, but don’t be telling me that this passably attractive actress is Venus on Earth (or whatever planet). No, I’m right, and you’re wrong on this one buddy.

Oh, also, the rest of the world and I had a talk, and we think you should shut up about Dane Cook. And we don’t want to see the superfinger anymore. It’s clear that you like him, yes, but you’re the only one now, and if you put that album on in the car again, I’m afraid that the citizens of earth and I will have to throw you into a volcano. We’re very sorry, it’s not that we don’t like you (you’re great!), it’s just that he isn’t funny at all.

How can I be so sure of all this? Why is it that I’m so frighteningly accurate here, while you’re shredding your fingernails as you scramble for a grip on reality? Simple—because I don’t like these things, I’m able to use a little power I like to call objectivity. Because you’re all about this garbage, you are unable to recognize the many inherent flaws in the things you like. Not only that, but you think that we should like them too.

Oh? Home Improvement reruns are on? Sure, we can watch that. Do you have any liquor?

Remember the time your dog chewed up one of my mittens? You said she was just playing, and that it was cute. As it happens, it wasn’t cute, and you have an awful dog. An awful, bad dog. I needed two mittens. Two hands, two mittens. Easy. Even a dog should be able to figure that out—well, a good dog should.

At the time, I was surprised that you didn’t realize that about your dog (what a horrible, horrible creature she is). But that was my fault. Thankfully, science—as it tends to do—has done me a favor by removing the surprise from such situations. A new study in the Journal of Consumer Research has shown that when a person likes a thing, even just some small part of it, they are unable to recognize its faults, and are likely to think most other people will like it as well. On the other hand, when a person dislikes something, they are able to look at the thing more objectively, and predict much more accurately both who might like or dislike said thing.

Now this might all seem a little obvious—anecdotal evidence has suggested as much for as long as there have been both people and things people might like. But, then again, if it’s so obvious, why did you keep wearing that Hooters shirt. What? No, actually, it’s not ironic. It’s obnoxious.

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