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  1. #1
    only bites when provoked
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    Default Do you have this problem, too? (Californians, mainly, and not really MBTI-specific.)

    So, I'm standing in the longest line I've ever seen for security here at SAN (San Diego International Airport), and some noisy chatty lady from Michigan was standing in front of me. I was just standing there really annoyed by the line and listening to her stupid ass babble on and on about positively nothing. So, once she finally gets off the phone so I don't have to listen to her inane palaver, she turns and looks around, then looks at me and starts talking to me. I try not to look too annoyed as she goes on some more about how she's never been here before.

    So, anyhow, at some point she asked me how far it was from here to Oceanside. I responded "15 or 20 miles", which seemed about right, until I noticed something on the airline site - a listing of how far it is to some nearby communities. Their list says "40 miles", which is, in fact, correct.

    I could have at the moment sworn that it was no further than that, since it doesn't seem to take very long to drive there from here. Do we just cease to notice and underestimate distances because it's "familiar"? Is there something wrong with me? I knew that San Clemente was ~60 away, and Pendleton is ~20 miles north-to-south on the 5, so it should have been bloody obvious, but it wasn't...

    Anyhow, just a random thought.
    I 100%, N 88%, T 88%, J 75%

    Disclaimer: The above is my opinion and mine alone, it does not mean I cannot change my mind, nor does it guarantee that my comments are related to any deep-seated convictions. Take everything I say with a whole snowplow worth of salt and call me in the morning, if you can.

  2. #2
    Procrastinating
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    I do that too but the flip. I always estimate its farther than it is. Its not that I dislike driving. I'm just impatient to get wherever I'm going. That is, perhaps, why I see it as longer... kinda like a kid... "are we there yet?"

  3. #3
    Highly Hollow Wandering's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seanan View Post
    "are we there yet?"
    "The Kingdom of Far Far Away, that's where..." Er, oops Wrong track of thought...

  4. #4
    RETIRED CzeCze's Avatar
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    Actually, a CA thing is to tell people distance in minutes. I had no concept and still have very little concept of miles. In traffic, over mountains, in bad weather, miles are meaningless and misleading.

    I like to know how soon I'll get somewhere rather than how much ground I'll cover.

    I noticed when I moved to the east coast nobody thinks or answers like this.

    "How far away is X?"

    I say "20 minutes, 30 minutes in traffic, 15 minutes if you speed"

    East Coasters say, "About 12 miles"



    WTH does that mean?
    “If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they'll kill you.” ― Oscar Wilde

    "I'm outtie 5000" ― Romulux

    Johari/Nohari

  5. #5
    Procrastinating
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    Quote Originally Posted by CzeCze View Post
    Actually, a CA thing is to tell people distance in minutes. I had no concept and still have very little concept of miles. In traffic, over mountains, in bad weather, miles are meaningless and misleading.
    Bingo! He's a fast driver thinking minutes.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seanan View Post
    Bingo! He's a fast driver thinking minutes.
    He drives at 120 miles an hour?

  7. #7
    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    I have a problem with people who don't STFU and can't take a hint that you don't want to chat with them. Not great with estimating distances, either. Interesting hypothesis, tho.

  8. #8
    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    Hmm. I'm East coast and I always talk about the minutes rather than the miles. I'm perennially bad at estimating distances. In fact the only way I can estimate distance is to convert from driving time, based on how much faster or slower than 60mph I can expect to go.
    The one who buggers a fire burns his penis
    -anonymous graffiti in the basilica at Pompeii

  9. #9
    Senior Member Grayscale's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolf View Post
    I was just standing there really annoyed by the line and listening to her stupid ass babble on and on about positively nothing. So, once she finally gets off the phone so I don't have to listen to her inane palaver, she turns and looks around, then looks at me and starts talking to me.
    people who are always talking are rarely listening

    Quote Originally Posted by Wolf View Post
    Do we just cease to notice and underestimate distances because it's "familiar"?
    when you're experiencing something new, your brain is being stimulated by an entirely original combination of nerves in an entirely original sequence of nerve impulses.

    when similar nerve impulses are repeated, they tend to be ignored by the brain... many people experience this in physical pain... upon initially being injured, you feel the full intensity of the pain. the nerves that were damaged by the injury are screaming at the brain "we're hurt!"... the brain, however, "gets the point" after while and dampens the intensity (unless you were to bump that spot again, causing the nerves to signal a new wave of pain)

    it would be my guess that this holds true even with more complex stimuli, vision, sound, touch, etc. after a while the brain dampens the repeated pattern of nerve impulses... you "tune out" and it probably seems like time has passed more quickly due to the small volume of memory retained from the experience. you might recall if someone had cut you off, but that is because that stimulated your brain with a new pattern of impulses, so the event "sticks out" and is recorded in memory.

    many people say that time seems to pass more quickly as they get older. i think this is simply another example of the aforementioned... with each new thing we experience, the probability of experiencing something new decreases.

  10. #10
    not to be trusted miss fortune's Avatar
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    In the midwest distance estimates are easy- "you drive about 60 miles east and you can't miss it!"

    of course it's very flat here, and people generally ask how to get to places I've driven to many times
    “Oh, we're always alright. You remember that. We happen to other people.” -Terry Pratchett

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