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  1. #1
    this is my winter song EJCC's Avatar
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    Default INTPs: "Sticks in the mud"?

    It seems like people are always stereotyping SJs as being sticks in the mud, i.e. having a certain way they think and do things that they never divert from, and that they look down on people who think/act differently. But with two of the INTPs I know, it seems as if they're more like that than the SJs I know.

    Examples:

    1. With my (female) INTP friend and ESFJ friend, on a road trip.
    INTP: *makes a very dry, teasing joke*
    Me and ESFJ: *not laughing and thinking the INTP is serious, and being mean to us*
    INTP: What's wrong with you? That's like the fifteenth funny joke you haven't appreciated in the past two days! You people have no sense of humor.

    ^She was serious/frustrated, and not being ironic. I mention this example because many/most non-INTPs I know will adjust their style of humor based on the audience, and this particular INTP stuck with the one style the entire time, despite no one laughing.

    2. My INTP dad, who never goes to church (where my mom and I are in the choir) on Easter even though he's religious, talking with the older sister of the autistic man he takes care of every Sunday morning.
    Sister: You know, since it's Easter, why don't you take the morning off? You can go to the Easter service.
    Dad: Uh... *freezes up*
    Sister: It's no problem. You can be with your family for more of the day.
    Dad: Um... *still frozen up a bit* no thank you.
    Sister: Really, it's no problem. Go ahead.
    Dad: Really, no thank you.
    Sister: You could take my brother with you.
    Dad: I'll take your brother... but it won't be to church. It'll be to do what we usually do.

    He made all these excuses to me about that interaction, like how he doesn't know how all the ceremonial stuff works (the church in question is Episcopal), but even he recognized that it was REALLY because he's a self-described "stick in the mud" (which is where I got the thread title from), and that even though he doesn't really have an Easter tradition (more like a Sunday Routine), he's uncomfortable making a new one.


    I'm not dissing INTPs with this thread - after all, I love you guys, and I love my INTP dad and my INTP friends. It's just that these small pieces of evidence are so contrary to the stereotypes that I've heard that I felt the need to verify whether these two INTPs aren't just exceptions to some general rule. And who better to ask than the Ti/Ne folks - the masters of objectivity!
    ~ g e t f e s t i v e ! ~


    EJCC: "The Big Questions in my life right now: 1) What am I willing to live with? 2) What do I have to live with? 3) What can I change for the better?"
    Coriolis: "Is that the ESTJ Serenity Prayer?"



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  2. #2
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    My INTP husband calls himself a stick in the mud. He is rather curmudgeonly. He's fun and funny in his comfort zone, but if you try to drag him out of it, you can expect to be made miserable.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

  3. #3
    Minister of Propagandhi ajblaise's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EJCC View Post
    2. My INTP dad, who never goes to church (where my mom and I are in the choir) on Easter even though he's religious, talking with the older sister of the autistic man he takes care of every Sunday morning.
    Sister: You know, since it's Easter, why don't you take the morning off? You can go to the Easter service.
    Dad: Uh... *freezes up*
    Sister: It's no problem. You can be with your family for more of the day.
    Dad: Um... *still frozen up a bit* no thank you.
    Sister: Really, it's no problem. Go ahead.
    Dad: Really, no thank you.
    Sister: You could take my brother with you.
    Dad: I'll take your brother... but it won't be to church. It'll be to do what we usually do.
    Lol... *high fives your Dad* He knows what he's doin.

    I can totally see how INTPs can be sticks in the mud, especially to ESXXs. Good for you for making this thread, and even on enemy territory!

  4. #4
    Playnerd Timeless's Avatar
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    If INTPs are sticks in the mud, then ENTPs like to play with the mud.

  5. #5
    Senior Member burymecloser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EJCC View Post
    1. With my (female) INTP friend and ESFJ friend, on a road trip.
    INTP: *makes a very dry joke*
    Me and ESFJ: *not laughing and thinking the INTP is serious*
    INTP: What's wrong with you? That's like the fifteenth funny joke you haven't appreciated in the past two days! You people have no sense of humor.
    I'm going to focus on this one for now.

    I certainly wouldn't describe myself as a stick in the mud, and it's my impression that a lot of people think I'm funny, but I can relate to your INTP friend. When I use the sort of dry humor you mention, it's sometimes unclear to people whether or not I'm joking, and my serious demeanor sometimes seems to discourage people from laughing (lest they offend me if I was serious?).

    This is primarily an issue for people who don't know me well. As I get more comfortable with people and start to let my guard down a little, they seem to rapidly get more comfortable with me, and things like that flow a lot better, with more smiles and fewer misunderstandings. Alcohol seems to help.

    It's strange that your friend doesn't seem to have picked up on the pattern of her jokes falling flat, or has noticed the pattern but hasn't put 2 and 2 together to recognize why or start working towards a solution.

    I find myself wondering how common or uncommon this might be in N/S interaction. Anyone have thoughts on the matter?
    i just want to be a sweetheart

  6. #6
    this is my winter song EJCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by burymecloser View Post
    I certainly wouldn't describe myself as a stick in the mud, and it's my impression that a lot of people think I'm funny, but I can relate to your INTP friend. When I use the sort of dry humor you mention, it's sometimes unclear to people whether or not I'm joking, and my serious demeanor sometimes seems to discourage people from laughing (lest they offend me if I was serious?).
    I actually relate to this too. Once I was giving a speech, and a few people laughed at one joke but the audience was mostly either silent or muttering stuff like "Was that a joke? Am I allowed to laugh?"

    It's strange that your friend doesn't seem to have picked up on the pattern of her jokes falling flat, or has noticed the pattern but hasn't put 2 and 2 together to recognize why or start working towards a solution.
    This is the key. My theory is that her mindset was "It's their problem and not mine, therefore they need to change and not me." Kind of like that scene in Office Space when they ask Michael Bolton why he doesn't just have people call him Mike (since he's so sick of people mentioning Michael Bolton the singer in front of him), and he says "No way! Why should I change? He's the one who sucks!"

    I find myself wondering how common or uncommon this might be in N/S interaction. Anyone have thoughts on the matter?
    I'm inclined to say that it's not common, if only based on my experience. The situation you were describing is one I've also seen with two S friends of mine - an ISTJ and an ISFP. I've seen NFs, NTs, ISFJs, ISTJs and ESTJs laugh at that sort of humor, though I've never met an ESFJ in my life who's been able to appreciate it.
    ~ g e t f e s t i v e ! ~


    EJCC: "The Big Questions in my life right now: 1) What am I willing to live with? 2) What do I have to live with? 3) What can I change for the better?"
    Coriolis: "Is that the ESTJ Serenity Prayer?"



    ESTJ - LSE - ESTj (mbti/socionics)
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    want to ask me something? go for it!

  7. #7
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    Hah, I relate to both situations. My jokes never seem to fly around SJs. And the same vice versa. Though occasionally I'll say or do something that wasn't meant to be really funny but would crack up an SJ. The dry humor you mentioned is usually accompanied with a straight face because we don't want to be seen laughing at our own lame jokes. It's like a safety procedure to see if someone else laughs; then it's okay to laugh too.

    I was in an embarrassing situation once when an ESFJ listened in on me and my friends' goofy banter and wanted to contribute by telling us a joke she thought was just hilarious. Things got awkward...especially when she was already finished and I was still waiting for the punchline. In the end she had to explain the joke to us which still didn't really help. Something about a bride wearing her mother-in-law's dress or whatever.

    Maybe it's a S/N thing but my ESTP friend seems to follow my humor pretty well. Maybe N humor is more jumpy and haphazard, where a joke can just hit you suddenly and S is more of a buildup to an ironic end?

    Your dad has his reasons for seemingly being a stick in the mud, as do others in a different situation. Though now I see how we can seem like sticks in the mud. I get very stubborn sometimes but usually I refuse to disclose why.

  8. #8
    this is my winter song EJCC's Avatar
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    ^Sigh... Thank you for your comment, but the point you got from my point is exactly the opposite of the point I was trying to get across. I like dry humor too, and I don't think it's an S/N thing (honestly, sometimes it feels more like an F/T thing, though I'm sure that's also false); usually I'm really good with it, but... maybe I wasn't describing her humor style very well. It wasn't just that it was dry - it was also teasingly mean. Kind of a big-sisterly thing. But see, my ESFJ friend and me kept taking her jokes as mean jabs, when she didn't intend for them to be that way. I'll edit the OP so that the humor thing is more clear.

    Also, I'm totally fine with my dad's decision. Nothing I said in the OP is meant to have any connotation whatsoever - it's simply objective evidence of my point.
    ~ g e t f e s t i v e ! ~


    EJCC: "The Big Questions in my life right now: 1) What am I willing to live with? 2) What do I have to live with? 3) What can I change for the better?"
    Coriolis: "Is that the ESTJ Serenity Prayer?"



    ESTJ - LSE - ESTj (mbti/socionics)
    1w2/7w6/3w4 so/sx (enneagram)
    want to ask me something? go for it!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by EJCC View Post
    It wasn't just that it was dry - it was also teasingly mean. Kind of a big-sisterly thing. But see, my ESFJ friend and me kept taking her jokes as mean jabs, when she didn't intend for them to be that way.
    Ah that sort. In that case, I still relate to that. Yeah I normally control myself with the cutting humor when in public or with people I don't know very well. With close friends I just let it loose because I know they know I'm not being mean at heart, just making a somewhat mean joke...if that makes sense.

    Also, I'm totally fine with my dad's decision. Nothing I said in the OP is meant to have any connotation whatsoever - it's simply objective evidence of my point.
    I know it didn't mean to. I'm sorry if it came out that way, I will edit my post. It's just that I can see how people can see each other as stubborn in completely different ways but can't fathom how.

  10. #10
    Senior Member ZPowers's Avatar
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    He's a stick in the mud for skipping church? Next you'll say he opposes midday naps!

    Seriously, I must've been going to the wrong church all these years. Maybe I should look into that Church of St. Hunter S Thompson. Or that Utah one. The Church of LSD.
    Does he want a pillow for his head?

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