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  1. #1
    Resident Snot-Nose GZA's Avatar
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    Default Appearing Intelligent?

    I was thinking recently about how people kind of alter their behaviour to appear a certain way (by dress or the way they talk or whatever).

    Are there things some people do to appear more intelligent?

    A guy at my school does everything he can to look intelligent. Apparently people who know him well say he is indeed intelligent, but not any moreso than any of the other kids in the gifted program. He gets the best grades in the grade and everything, too. Some people noted that he seems to do a lot of things to make himself look smart and then brags about his intelligence rather than actually being smart. He plays violin and talks about how much he loves classical music, he answers every question the teachers ask, and he studies as hard as possible to garuntee the best mark on every test.

    This has me thinking, what are some of the things people may do to do this?

    Here are some things I think people seem to associate (unaccurately) with intelligence. Some of these are things I've noticed, some of these are things I've heard from satirical websites like StuffWhitePeopleLike (so some of them are a bit more on the satirical side -but remember that satire always comments on reality to some degree).

    -Glasses
    -Quotes Shakespeare
    -Studying in a european country
    -Playing an obscure instrument no one has heard of from another country
    -Wine connesuir
    -Classic music connesuir
    -Liberal politics
    -Foreign film collection
    -Quotes John Keats

    Do you think this really happens? Do you think it is desireable to be seen as an intelligent person, or an "intellectual" (I hate that word!)

    And no, this is not my subtle way of asking advice so I can look smarter than that fool at my school

    And, just for fun, how about other things... like how to be seen as a leader. What are some things someone would do/wear if they wanted to seem like a strong leader?

  2. #2

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    It seems futile to me to try to "appear" anything.

    I don't think the things you listed are necessarily done for "looking smart." I don't think wearing glasses makes you look smart. Neither does having liberal politics. Quoting people is generally done because the quoted expressed something better than the person doing the quoting could have.

    The other things you mentioned are slightly eccentric. Do you actually associate them with being smart?

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  3. #3
    Wild Card Atomic Fiend's Avatar
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    Default

    It seems like more trouble to feign intelligence then to actually be intelligent, it wouldn't be long before someone realizes that your full of crap.

  4. #4
    Resident Snot-Nose GZA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    It seems futile to me to try to "appear" anything.

    I don't think the things you listed are necessarily done for "looking smart." I don't think wearing glasses makes you look smart. Neither does having liberal politics. Quoting people is generally done because expressed said something better than the person doing the quoting could have.

    The other things you mentioned are slightly eccentric. Do you actually associate them with being smart?
    I'm not saying anyone who does any of those things is doing it to look smart, nor do I think that doing those things makes you look smart, but it seems to me some people do associate those things with being smart. Maybe its just me

    Yes, quoting can be done to illustrate a point, but excessive quoting, and depending on how its done, can be bad. For example, quoting someone the person probably hasn't heard of is not a good idea and can make you look pompous, in my experience (especially when you don't explain who they are :steam: I had a teacher who did this a lot)


    I agree with you, Silently Honest. Everyone has figured out now that that guy at my school isn't actually as smart as he wants you to think he is and that he's kind of an ass.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by GZA View Post
    Yes, quoting can be done to illustrate a point, but excessive quoting, and depending on how its done, can be bad. For example, quoting someone the person probably hasn't heard of is not a good idea and can make you look pompous, in my experience (especially when you don't explain who they are :steam: I had a teacher who did this a lot)
    We need to give the quoted person credit, don't we?

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  6. #6
    Resident Snot-Nose GZA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    We need to give the quoted person credit, don't we?
    Does it matter if the person doesn't know who they are? If you are going to quote them and say their name, explain who they are too if the person doesn't know

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by GZA View Post
    Does it matter if the person doesn't know who they are? If you are going to quote them and say their name, explain who they are too if the person doesn't know
    That is a lot more trouble. Often, I just like the way someone I read expressed things. I really don't always know much about the person. For me, it is the way something was expressed that appeals to me. I basically don't care who the person is. Reputation holds little stock for me.

    BTW. Good thread topic. I am often frustrated by people calling me "intelligent" for some of the things you mention on the list. But they say it like an insult. I've always wondered what causes this.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  8. #8
    Gotta catch you all! Blackmail!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GZA View Post
    -Glasses
    -Quotes Shakespeare
    -Studying in a european country
    -Playing an obscure instrument no one has heard of from another country
    -Wine connesuir
    -Classic music connesuir
    -Liberal politics
    -Foreign film collection
    -Quotes John Keats
    You said this comes from a satirical website???

    Well, I should really worry, because:

    1) I wear glasses
    2) I studied in an european country (in fact, I was born there)
    3) I appreciate wine and fancy myself to know some, especially Burgundy's. -(I'm French)
    4) I can play several instruments (but not always very well)
    5) My favorite kind of music is classical, and especially baroque
    6) I am very liberal
    7) I enjoy a lot of "foreign films", including some not very well known (iranian movies, for instance). In fact, I often find american blockbusters rather shallow, predictable and boring.
    8) I enjoy quoting poets, but only those I have thoroughly read (see my signature, for instance)

    Woe is me!

    (Or is it rather a cultural/social gap?)
    "A man who only drinks water has a secret to hide from his fellow-men" -Baudelaire

    7w8 SCUxI

  9. #9
    mrs disregard's Avatar
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    Well... Blackmail, you must take into account that GZA is 16, so it is youngsters that are apparently doing all of this.

  10. #10

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    Maybe it is an age thing. But I find it amazing how many people hold on to wierd associations like this as adults.

    I personally think it is an (North?) American thing, and it does not reflect well.

    A lot of people need glasses as they get older (ans they don't have to nearing senior citizenship either). Glasses of contacts are usually a choice based on irritation. If anything comes even close to me eyes, I start tearing up.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

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