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tigtog (aka Viv) is the founder of this blog. She lives in Sydney, Australia: husband, 2 kids, cat, house, garden, just enough wine-racks and (sigh) far too few bookshelves.

This author has written 3443 posts for Hoyden About Town. Read more about tigtog »

6 responses to “One to bookmark: Slavering Beast Theory”

  1. SunlessNick

    Slavering Beast diagnostics are almost always ex post facto–he committed violence?

    It works the other way too. Houw dare you exercise caution – he didn’t attack you the moment he laid eyes on you, so he can’t be a Slavering Beast – so he’s an ordinary guy and deserves your complete and utter trust in all things.

  2. tigtog

    Oh yes, that was a huge part of the uproar over ElevatorGate and comes storming into threads the moment anybody mentions the Schrödinger’s Rapist post.

  3. tigtog

    To which I must say – when I meet a new acquaintance, Schrödinger’s rapist is only one of the possible states of which to be wary of at one extreme. I’m also hopeful for the possibility of other states. This new acquaintance could be:
    * Schrödinger’s bore
    * Schrödinger’s spellbinding raconteur
    * Schrödinger’s boor
    * Schrödinger’s BFF
    * Schrödinger’s racist
    * Schrödinger’s supportive workmate
    * Schrödinger’s narcissist
    * Schrödinger’s kind neighbour
    * Schrödinger’s paedophile
    * Schrödinger’s mentor
    * Schrödinger’s sexual harasser
    * Schrödinger’s soulmate
    * Schrödinger’s calculating abuser
    * Schrödinger’s fuckbuddy
    * Schrödinger’s axe murderer
    * Schrödinger’s jogging partner
    etc

    If people want to insist on a traditional two-state model only, none of us know whether Schrödinger’s Acquaintance is going to be Harmless or Harmful as we peel back the social layers. People with a healthy sense of self-preservation stay aware of the Harmful possibility, just in case.

  4. Megpie71

    To put the whole “Schrodinger’s X” thing in simple terms: most people aren’t telepathic (I say most, because apparently there’s someone out there who is, and they’re warping the curve for the rest of us). So we have to use things like “what people say within earshot” and “what people do around us” as hints to what the stranger sitting nearby is thinking. It isn’t socially acceptable to present new acquaintances with a multi-page questionnaire asking their views on a range of different topics, or to dose them with sodium pentothal and interrogate them in order to get information, so we have to go from the information which is available to us – and that usually boils down to “what we’ve heard them say”, “what we’ve seen them do” and “what we’re willing to believe of what other people report to us about what they’ve said and done when we weren’t there”.

    Quite frankly, I’d just as soon deal with the apparent social requirement for perfect telepathy. Let’s all admit that we can’t read minds, we can only make our judgements from the information people give us, and let’s admit to that other great unspoken truth about the majority of humanity: people can lie.

    If we admit that people can and do lie (for all kinds of reasons, not all of them wicked or evil) and detecting the lie in progress is a skill which requires a certain amount of practice; if we admit that telepathy doesn’t exist, and we can only go on the information we have; then we’re heading toward a way of accepting the possibility of someone being lied to (either deliberately or inadvertently) and later victimised without it necessarily having been a fault or failing on the part of the victim. If we admit that people are capable of lying to themselves, we can also admit sometimes a violent act can be a surprise to the perpetrator (and that it’s their subsequent reaction to this act which provides even more information – do they accept they did something wrong and genuinely attempt change, or do they place all the blame on the person they hurt?

    The Grow mental health self-help program has the following little wisdom: “Sow an act and reap a habit; sow a habit and reap a character; sow a character and reap a destiny.”

  5. tigtog

    If we admit that people can and do lie (for all kinds of reasons, not all of them wicked or evil) and detecting the lie in progress is a skill which requires a certain amount of practice; if we admit that telepathy doesn’t exist, and we can only go on the information we have; then we’re heading toward a way of accepting the possibility of someone being lied to (either deliberately or inadvertently) and later victimised without it necessarily having been a fault or failing on the part of the victim. If we admit that people are capable of lying to themselves, we can also admit sometimes a violent act can be a surprise to the perpetrator (and that it’s their subsequent reaction to this act which provides even more information – do they accept they did something wrong and genuinely attempt change, or do they place all the blame on the person they hurt?

    This is definitely the nub of it, Meg. People lie to each other and to themselves. We all want to think of ourselves and our close ones as more consistent than most of us really are, but spinning fantasies about trulyreliable instincts that we don’t tend to actually have doesn’t really make the world a safer place..

  6. SunlessNick

    Oh yes, that was a huge part of the uproar over ElevatorGate

    Exactly what I was thinking of.

    And exactly, Megpie. Exactly.

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