Your score was 113. Very quirkyalone: Relatives may give you quizzical looks, and so may friends, but you know in your heart of hearts that you are following your inner voice. Though you may not be romancing a single person, you are romancing the world. Celebrate your freedom on National Quirkyalone Day, February 14th!
“Mi, a name I call myself ...”
I suspect that the folks behind the quirkyalone concept are using it as an excuse for a combination of antisocial behavior, unrealistically high standards, and a broken ability to connect with others. Having a designation for it, having a category, a box, into which a bunch of other people fit as well, probably makes them say, “Hey, there are others like me. See, I'm not broken.” Or perhaps they'll all broken. And then they go and quote Rilke as support for the position:
Patron saint. Okay.
In unrelated Valentine's Day news, CNN reports on a health study that “finds out why it's gross to kiss your sister.” I love the mature headline. gross
There are two relevant features of the story: a challenge to Freud(ianism) and an attempt to ascribe the behavior to instinct. “Researchers who wanted to find out why it is not only taboo to kiss your sister, but also disgusting, said Wednesday that they have discovered why in a discovery that challenges some basic tenets of Freudian theory,” they begin. The Freudian part only comes at the end, with a quote by Leda Cosmides: “He thought you are attracted to your relatives and your siblings and parents and it takes the force of culture and society to keep you from committing the incest that is in your heart.”
The Freudian position assumes a default orientation that is not altered by something within the individual but which is repressed through social norms. His super-ego is in that regard a super-structure; it is, after all, as an Überich something above or perhaps beyond the self.
The position advocated by Cosmides and her colleagues is not entirely new. The research was essentially psychological and sociological in nature, or so it appears in the rather limited article: “Cosmides and her colleagues tested 600 volunteers, asking them all sorts of questions jumbled together so they would not know what was being studied. ‘We asked them how many favors did you do for this particular sibling in a month. We asked if this sibling needed a kidney, how likely would you be to donate this sibling a kidney.’” What he have here is some nicely, relatively-controlled empirical data.
The conclusion based on observation can be stated as follows: “What determined incest disgust and altruism was the same—how much time an older sibling spent watching his or her mother care for a younger one, or how much time the two spent together in the same household.”
Studies of a more anthropological and observational or anecdotal nature have reached similar conclusions but not dealt with the same mechanisms. In particular I refer to the so-called Westermarck effect:
The preceding Wikipedia passage reports on sexual imprinting, “the process by which a young animal learns the characteristics of a desirable mate. For example, male zebra finches appear to prefer mates with the appearance of the female bird that rears them, rather than mates of their own type (Immelmann, 1972). Sexual imprinting on inanimate objects is a popular theory concerning the development of sexual fetishism. For example, according to this theory, imprinting on shoes or boots (as with Lorenz' geese) would be the cause of shoe fetishism.”
Happy V-Day, indeed.
—February 14 2007