I went skiing this Saturday. It was pretty enjoyable. I came away with some random observations:
- The difference between skiing and snowboarding. Snowboarders are cooler than skiiers, lets admit that first. I'm an ardent skiier. The first time I tried snowboarding, I woke up the next day with my body totally aching. So, never learned. What I wondered, was why do people try to do snowboarding if it is harder? The answer: status. Because snowboarding has attained the image of being more rebellious and less traditional, it is the people who want to act cool who end up snowboarding. Honestly, look at the people snowboarding and skiing. There is a pretty clear difference in the personalities (as a whole. Obviously stereotypes aren't true for everyone, but are true 90% of the time.) The average snowboarder is more rebellious and poser than the average skiier. Anyway, this is true for all impression seeking behavior. People grow their hair long not because of trying to "express themselves," but because they want to be known as rebels. Women don't wear jewelry because they want to be magnetic. It's because they want to show the world that someone cares enough about them to buy them jewelry.
So, the snowboarding industry has crafted the image of the rebel and has marketed itself to those who want to be rebels. Because everyone wants to gain status by appearing as a rebel, the industry has managed to mass market snowboarding to millions of people while simultaneously allowing them to indulge themselves into thinking that they are not conforming. Brilliant. How else can you make anti-conformists conform?
But skiing in general:
Beyond the thrill of speeding down the mountain, could the act of skiing itself be a status symbol? That at the ski resort, it is no longer the rich who gain status, but the best skiiers?
I wonder because after I returned to my apartment I forgot to remove my ski tag and was on my way out to party that night when a friend made fun of me for not removing my tag. He though i was trying to act cool by showing off the fact that I went skiing. I didn't remove it because I was in a rush. But of all the people who did leave it on, it is not by accident. It is a calculated effort to demonstrate higher value and status by showing the world that they ski. Skiing is expensive, and it takes some physical fitness and some minimum courage to face a steep hill. I chickened out an slid down the black diamond.
I really think that the more we look into sexual selection, the more we will see how much of what we do in life is driven by the desire to project an appearance of status in order to attract a mate. Everything is a conscious or subconscious calculation designed to maximize the impression one gives off to the world. That's why I believe in stereotyping people based on how they act and dress.
Saw few blacks and hispanics there. Because they don't have the money, or are uncomfortable in overwhelmingly white ski resort? Any possibility that african americans lack the cognitive skills necessary to understand the physics of skiing and the visuospatial ability to navigate? That the same goes for hispanics? That it is connected to the paucity of oppressed minorities with solid math skills?
So why is KFC so popular to african americans, and why do they offer macaroni and cheese in a mainly meat eating establishment?
The food is comfort food. It is food that we liked as children, before our tastes became sophisticated and I started liking green curry and hummus. I think there is a physiological change that takes place in us, genetically endowed, that makes us appreciate different foods as we grow older. It's an extension of the milk-gerber-spagetti-pasta primavera dynamic. Kids just like some foods more than others.
Anyway, what is IQ?
It's original intent was to measure mental age, that a 8 year old child with the mental age of a 10 year old had an 10/8 = 125% mental age (don't know how to convert that into IQ scores). Well guess what? The average IQ of African Americans is 85, which would put them at a lower mental age than most americans. So, with a lower mental age means that they will prefer food that kids will. This is because because the average african american has a genetically endowed intelligence that prevents them from acting more sophisticated than a 14 year old. All those thugs, drug dealers, janitors, and cashiers? They are just kids with the body, hormones, and faces of adults. And we ask ourselves why people chop off arms in Rwanda, cut off the women's clitoris in sub-saharan africa, fail to oust 80,000 whites land in a Zimbabwe of 12 million blacks, riot in New Orleans after Katrina, and throw a baby out the window in Brooklyn?
Because you're giving kids the power of adults.
But, they will still eat like kids even if they put on the show of being adults. Some things show through despite the social engineering.