0358: "Loud Party"

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Concealed
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Concealed » Mon Dec 17, 2007 6:29 am UTC

This is a shocking return to form! In fact, I enjoyed this comic so much that I registered on the forums just to comment about it.

I appreciate random nerd-based humor as much as any other nerd, but I can find that in almost every other webcomic out there (albeit without some of the quality of XKCD). Recently, it seems like XKCD has been based solely around this form of jokes, and I have found myself bemoaning this on numerous occasions. The truth is, the aspect of XKCD that originally caught my attention was the strangely introspective and bizarre style that I had never seen before. It really resonated with me and led to my becoming a full-time reader.

I'm not saying that the nerdy humor should disappear (not by a long shot) but just that I would love to see more of these pencil-drawn, instrospective comics interspersed with slightly more frequency among the standard fare.

Anyway, I really enjoyed the comic. I can't tell you how many times I've been at a party, and all I can think about is how much I wish I was somewhere peaceful.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby djbb » Mon Dec 17, 2007 6:34 am UTC

For me, the comic is saying that these 2 are attracted to each other at the party but neither of them have worked up the nerve to approach one another. And as nerds, they find it easier to communicate online, which is generally true because real life doesn't have a backspace button when you're trying to flirt with the opposite sex. Hence why they're both thinking they wish they were somewhere quiet with their laptops.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby starkruzr » Mon Dec 17, 2007 6:40 am UTC

Number3Pencils wrote:It took me a minute or so before I realized which direction the thought bubbles were going. Then I really liked it. Because: I love climbing trees, That's a very well-drawn tree, And I hate loud parties. I'm only disappointed by the fact that they're not even looking at each other, and they've brought technology straight out of its domain into nature. But, I don't have to agree with everything in every xkcd; quite possibly Randall doesn't even.

Hits home with me because there was the Worst Party Ever directly below my dorm room last night, leaking into the entire building. Our hallway, stairwell, and bathroom had a heavy odor of vomit, a girl was passed out on the floor, music was blasting until 02:45, and there was marijuana sprinkled around the sinks. I seriously want to throttle someone for it.

I hate parties, in general.
OK, completely random tangent here: am I the only one who loves bringing technology into nature?

Don't get me wrong, I love camping in all its forms (except for spawn-camping). But I love going out into uncharted territory with a trailer outfitted with all the bells and whistles and STAKING A CLAIM FOR CIVILIZED MAN. You know, drive out to the middle of nowhere, park the camper, set up the wind turbine, solar cells and genny, then just go to town with establishing my outpost. Affix my cell phone to a particularly tall tree to get reception, then go online and read xkcd. Cook up some really yummy steak, start the campfire, toast marshmallows, and eat s'mores whilst listening to satellite radio. y'know?

Maybe it's because I've never, ever felt "oppressed" by technology.

I also don't hate parties (or mariijuana, for that matter), so maybe there are two different mindsets at work here. I hope the girl was okay, though. :shock:
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SimonSwift
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby SimonSwift » Mon Dec 17, 2007 6:45 am UTC

Well, I can't say I dislike some good party time, unless everyone's being raving morons (there's a difference between being drunk and being damn stupid, and I like the former to a point--it runs in the genes; the latter is just annoying). However, I do distinctly remember a time when I met a girl at a party, and it was really annoying, so we went outside to get some air, and we ended up making a snow fort in the bank (I live in Minnesota, where there's enough snow to basically just dig a little ways into the bank and have a snow fort). We stayed in there for quite a while and chatted, and it was awesome.

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BT222
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby BT222 » Mon Dec 17, 2007 6:52 am UTC

How can you not understand?

Both of them are so awkward that even though they like each other, they can not break their embarrassment to talk to each other in real life. . . so they have to hide behind technology to express their affections.

Much like how you can text message a girl all the things you want to tell her, but it doesn't flow from you like that in real life so it's like you have two relationships going on: one where you are together, and a more emotionally true one when you are apart IMing, emailing, calling, or texting one another.

BAH!

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby starkruzr » Mon Dec 17, 2007 6:57 am UTC

BT222 wrote:How can you not understand?

Both of them are so awkward that even though they like each other, they can not break their embarrassment to talk to each other in real life. . . so they have to hide behind technology to express their affections.

Much like how you can text message a girl all the things you want to tell her, but it doesn't flow from you like that in real life so it's like you have two relationships going on: one where you are together, and a more emotionally true one when you are apart IMing, emailing, calling, or texting one another.

BAH!
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ysth
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby ysth » Mon Dec 17, 2007 7:11 am UTC

Lobstrosity wrote:
Lathe wrote:
richlayers wrote:I really like that the cups are red.

You beat me to it. :)
Related, is this the first use of color or am I forgetting a comic?

lmao.


I'm afraid you'll find it's permanently attached.

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Shai
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Shai » Mon Dec 17, 2007 7:13 am UTC

I got the impression that perhaps they knew each other, and begrudgingly went to the party. But, they both had their minds being together, in a sense.

I also, at first, thought the bubbles were going the other way (up, party being inside the bubble), and I think that was an awesome way to bring more depth to the comic. It's almost like taking what you'd expect to see and reversing it. It's rather clever in that sense - people on-line can have a party atmosphere, but you don't normally think of people at a party having a chat on IRC atmosphere.
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Wade M » Mon Dec 17, 2007 7:22 am UTC

I saw them both at two separate parties. The speakers aren't symmetrical. They're sitting on opposite sides of the tree. Why would friends do that? They would sit together.

Peace,
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Shadowhawk109
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Shadowhawk109 » Mon Dec 17, 2007 7:31 am UTC

This is why I love XKCD - if it hasn't happened to me, it's something I can see me doing. I'm not a party-goer, but I'm sure if I attended one, I would be wishing I was in a tree hanging out with some girl. Laptops are optional, but knowing me, they'd be included...

Also, hi.
Last edited by Shadowhawk109 on Tue Dec 18, 2007 3:07 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

frankfreeman
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby frankfreeman » Mon Dec 17, 2007 7:31 am UTC

I think the bigger question is are the two people to the couches right dancing/falling or did they also figure out levitation?

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Trella
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Trella » Mon Dec 17, 2007 7:36 am UTC

I didn't see them knowing each other at all, IRL. "Guy Partygoer" standing on the right with the other guy's arm around his shoulder is just at this party with his buddy who's falling down drunk (hence why he's hanging on). "Girl Partygoer" doesn't look like she knows anyone; she's just standing there looking/feeling(?) awkward. They're both wishing they were somewhere in a tree on their laptops. I think they just ended up in the same tree (that's why the different sides) without realizing it.

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misterbubbles
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby misterbubbles » Mon Dec 17, 2007 7:40 am UTC

I can understand the wish for peace and quiet at a party, and I agree with the interpretation:

Trella wrote:I didn't see them knowing each other at all, IRL. "Guy Partygoer" standing on the right with the other guy's arm around his shoulder is just at this party with his buddy who's falling down drunk (hence why he's hanging on). "Girl Partygoer" doesn't look like she knows anyone; she's just standing there looking/feeling(?) awkward. They're both wishing they were somewhere in a tree on their laptops. I think they just ended up in the same tree (that's why the different sides) without realizing it.


The thing I don't like is the computers. I like parties as a way to meet people and socialize face to face, and them wishing to be away socializing through a cold machine spits in the face of the spirit of the party.

I had to register and comment since something like this happened the other night when me and a dozen friends sat in a room enjoying eachothers' company when one of them suddenly had to go check his Myspace. Things like that bother me.

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ohki
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby ohki » Mon Dec 17, 2007 7:48 am UTC

Am I the only one who was thinking, "I hope they brought extra batteries, so they can stay up there longer?"
This comic makes me think though. Never one for parties, perhaps I can make new friends in trees.

misterbubbles wrote:I can understand the wish for peace and quiet at a party, and I agree with the interpretation:

The thing I don't like is the computers. I like parties as a way to meet people and socialize face to face, and them wishing to be away socializing through a cold machine spits in the face of the spirit of the party.

I had to register and comment since something like this happened the other night when me and a dozen friends sat in a room enjoying eachothers' company when one of them suddenly had to go check his Myspace. Things like that bother me.


I don't think it's so much that they're socializing through the device of a computer. They're simply enjoying each others' company while quietly doing their own thing in nature. Just having someone sitting there that you don't even need words to understand is a very nice feeling. If one choses to be overly analytical: it's two people socializing in a quiet, geeky, more personal way in contrast to socializing with a bunch of loud, drunken people in a hectic environment. However, I will agree with you in that Myspace is crap and the people addicted to it need their heads checked.

Also, welcome to the fora.
Last edited by ohki on Mon Dec 17, 2007 8:00 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Trella
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Trella » Mon Dec 17, 2007 7:49 am UTC

I dunno, I'm one of those people who will check AIM on my phone or whatever. But I'm also never the one in the center of the group laughing and talking and having a good time. The last party that I went to I ended up in a back room with 3 other people watching them play Mario Party while I was on my laptop.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby e946 » Mon Dec 17, 2007 7:53 am UTC

Also, if they're online, where are they getting their connection?

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby ohki » Mon Dec 17, 2007 8:03 am UTC

e946 wrote:Also, if they're online, where are they getting their connection?


10Base-Tree

Sounded better than "Tree-3"
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Keroppi » Mon Dec 17, 2007 8:11 am UTC

skyo wrote:
jaydoubleyou wrote:yeah, i don't get this one. are they supposed to be in an internet chatroom, working up the courage to talk to eachother? they are obviously friends. I mean, they're in a tree together! in real life!

WTF?


The way I see it, both of them are fantasizing about leaving the party and spending the night on their laptops in a tree. It took me a little while to realize that the bottom part is the imagination bubble, not the top.


Hm, I think you're right.

Although, then the alt text sort of doesn't make sense. If they weren't actually in the tree, then there would be no worry about how to get down.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Surgery » Mon Dec 17, 2007 8:22 am UTC

I interpret it as:

They don't know each other. They are just at a party. Both are wishing they were elsewhere, and they both happen to have the same wish. I don't think they are wishing they were with each other. I think having them occupy the same tree is just a visual metaphor to more strongly express the similarity of their wish, and maybe that they should be together.

also,
Concealed wrote:I can't tell you how many times I've been at a party, and all I can think about is how much I wish I was somewhere peaceful.

so, why don't you just leave? I went to a party once, did a quick sweep, realized everyone was either drunk or getting drunk, and promptly left. I left so quickly and quietly that no one noticed until a friend tried to introduce me to someone, and I was gone.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby moorling » Mon Dec 17, 2007 9:05 am UTC

Surgery wrote:I interpret it as:

They don't know each other. They are just at a party. Both are wishing they were elsewhere, and they both happen to have the same wish. I don't think they are wishing they were with each other. I think having them occupy the same tree is just a visual metaphor to more strongly express the similarity of their wish, and maybe that they should be together.


I tend to agree with this view. I think it makes the most sense since they don't seem to know each other.

I really don't like parties, mostly because I have claustrophobia issues with crowds. My university threw a fresher's ball the first week I was there but they did it on the first night so nobody knew anyone else and the music was so loud you couldn't really talk to anybody. On the other hand I went to a house party the next night and ended up talking to a guy, who is now my boyfriend, because we were the only ones not drunk.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby WendelScardua » Mon Dec 17, 2007 10:02 am UTC

Trella wrote:(...) since something like this happened the other night when me and a dozen friends sat in a room enjoying eachothers' company when one of them suddenly had to go check his Myspace. (...)


O_o

The exactly same thing happened to me last night! ( except s/Myspace/Orkut/ )

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Netrilix » Mon Dec 17, 2007 10:55 am UTC

e946 wrote:Also, if they're online, where are they getting their connection?

Hmm... I thought everyone had a tree close enough to their wireless router...

The scary thing is, I'm serious. I've sat in trees while on my laptop at multiple friends' houses.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Justinlrb » Mon Dec 17, 2007 10:58 am UTC

Just shimmy out to the end of the limb it should lower enough for you to drop down to the ground. Then your friend can toss the computers down and do the same. Alternately, hug the trunk and slid down. Or you could just stay up there and look for nuts.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby xabram » Mon Dec 17, 2007 11:05 am UTC

Mighty Jalapeno wrote:I've had the exact same experience about a million times, with the exception of the girl thinking the same thing...

This pretty much sums up my experience at parties.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Tarmac Waltergreen » Mon Dec 17, 2007 11:21 am UTC

I just wanted to say this cartoon reminded me of one of my favorite books, The Baron in the Trees, by Italo Calvino.

In it, the young baron climbs a tree at age twelve and never comes down, conducting all his business in the trees--hunts, plays with bandits, foils pirates, solves engineering problems, has love affairs, he even has a dog who follows him from tree to tree.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Uthor » Mon Dec 17, 2007 11:35 am UTC

jaydoubleyou wrote:yeah, that makes more sense if they are at the party, dreaming about being in the tree. props to you.

and now that I look at it, the thought bubbles get bigger as they go down (opposite of normal comic conventions), and the outline of the thought bubble curls towards the tree, not the other way as one would expect.

maybe i should look at the picture more carefully before making an ass out of myself.

I thought the same thing, though I did think it was odd that the "thought balloon bubbles were inside the thought balloon."

It's the panel layout that's confusing. Usually a thought comes up from your head, not down. Also, the bubbles are leading more or less to the heads of the people sitting in the tree and from the feet of the people standing at the party. It makes it look like the people in the tree are the ones thinking (or the people at the party think with their feet).

It doesn't help that the balloon around the bottom portion looks more like sky or leaves or that the background of the party is pure white. The first means that the bottom portion doesn't stick out as it should and the second makes it seem like the party is existing in a void. It makes the relationship weird.

Maybe it's trying to say that the fantasy is more real than the party, but I feel that explanation is a bit of a cop-out. I just think it's a poorly planned panel.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby vose_12 » Mon Dec 17, 2007 11:41 am UTC

I'm certain that the couple to the left at the party are intended to be dancing, but don't you think it easily looks like he just slapped her. That's what shocked me initially

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Maseiken » Mon Dec 17, 2007 11:52 am UTC

Sure it'speaceful, and fun an' all, but I can't see a result in which those laptops end up in a single solid state.
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Chelle » Mon Dec 17, 2007 12:04 pm UTC

I would say that both the guy and and girl seem flabbergasted to see each other (they both stopped doing whatever they had been doing, the guy even seems to have forgotten the friend hanging onto his shoulders). Lovestruck, possibly. They seem to be keeping eyecontact, while the party around them grows dim. Considering they're sharing a thought as well, I would say it is very much an heavenly-choir kind of situation.

I do think that they're having a messenger-type chat on that tree (if they were both just randomly searching in companiable silence, I think one of them would have had a book instead - you know, to emphasise their harmonic differentness and elegant nerddom), because it is very difficult to have an intelligent, nerdy conversation at a loud party. Many people are far more comfortable (and skilled) with expressing themselves in text form. Indeed, one of my treasured daydreams contains myself and random, strange nerdboy sharing urban-fantasy-politics insights through napkins and possibly eyeliner with roaring music in the background which we would both obviously loathe.
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Rowan_of_Rin » Mon Dec 17, 2007 12:35 pm UTC

What I got out of this comic was a comment on the way nerd/computer people have trouble with this style of socializing, and instead of a load party they would much rather be with their laptop up tree. I myself HATE these kind of parties, I just feel awkward and the whole socializing aspect seems very forced.
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Cynite » Mon Dec 17, 2007 1:47 pm UTC

Anybody else associate the tree to a tree in a forest in the domain sense?

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby LarrySDonald » Mon Dec 17, 2007 2:12 pm UTC

Aside from the not-quite clear thought bubble direction (I didn't get that and thought "Why would one dream of being at a loud party when you're in a tree with a laptop - that sounds a lot better?") I liked it. At the lab at school, there was a local IRC channel (usually mostly people from the lab, but also those not physically there and friends elsewhere). At one point, people realized the only people on were actually in the same room and instead put up a sign with the channel name at a table and moved to there, talking IRL. I didn't feel it worked at all. Face to face conversation is ok I guess, but sometimes you just want the real thing..

I love the story about climbing a tree and finding someone else already in it. I've wondered about that a few times (when in a tree or climbing into one), what it would be like to bump into someone else with a habit of sitting in trees already using it or climbing into it.

I usually feel the perfect conversation mode is a mix of talking (live) and IM/chat, using chat for more precise comments and things that need to be letter-perfect (links, spelled words, etc) but using speech for more speedy conversation.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby dxb338 » Mon Dec 17, 2007 2:15 pm UTC

As a semi-reformed dork, I thought I'd come in here to say that there really is nothing wrong with a party that is too loud to hear anyone talk. It's just that you have to rely on non verbal communication: a smile, eye contact, dancing. Once you have that, you can get out of there and talk to your nerdy heart's content about books, math problems, or obscure bands. Or just continue the non verbal communication...

oh, and I liked that the thought bubble was misleading at first, it literally flipped that comic cliche upside-down.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby DeadCatX2 » Mon Dec 17, 2007 2:34 pm UTC

It looks like the third character from the left (guy) threw the adjacent character at the couch. Or she tripped.

I think she was thrown...


I like the idea that the main characters are having an IM conversation in the tree. I prefer IM conversations because I don't have to actively remember what I said; there's a local history of it in the window.

Am I the only person who didn't have an issue with which direction the bubble went?


ohki wrote:
e946 wrote:Also, if they're online, where are they getting their connection?

10Base-Tree

*cackles*

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Red Hal » Mon Dec 17, 2007 2:46 pm UTC

Actually, wouldn't Tree-G be more appropriate?

Although you could argue if it was 10-Base-Tree that they could be running a dot1q trunk.

:oops: I geeked out again, didn't I?
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby GirlNoir » Mon Dec 17, 2007 3:13 pm UTC

Hal - you're allowed to do that here. :-)
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby dantes » Mon Dec 17, 2007 3:16 pm UTC

One of the most interesting things about these fora (and the reason I don't particularly feel the need to comment all that often) is just seeing how this community interacts and thinks. It seems that most are drawn to the same conclusion, and for the same reasons - as (Dr.) House said, of course he sees a neurological problem, he's a neurologist. Or something to that effect.

Most here seem to feel this general discomfort with meeting new people and traditional form of socialization because you (we, formerly; I'm a reformed nerd as well, to an extent) just haven't had as much of that interaction. It isn't what you learned, so you assume that the characters in this comic are feeling the same. Granted, Randall may very well fall into that category as well and as such, this would be his intention as well.

My take on it is that they may have met, but feel the need to continue socializing with their friends, boring-half-out-of-frame-girl and drunk-hand-on-shoulder-guy, even though they would much rather spend some time with each other getting to know one another better. Only thing is, this is a direct reflection of my experiences, because that's what I do at parties: get drunk, talk to the most eligible female, and if she's interesting we go outside and chat. Get away from the hubbub.

Perhaps the moral of the story is to go talk to her and not be so scared of that human interaction thing, because there's something to it. Just might meet up with someone who has similar arboreal desires. Or whatever.

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby space_raptor » Mon Dec 17, 2007 3:17 pm UTC

I am probably the dude standing on the couch. Haha.

I am not necessarily a fan of super loud parties, but I wouldn't rather be on my computer, tree or no tree. If the two were dreaming they were building a tree fort/ball pit, then I would be down.

I hate text messaging, and only tolerate instant messaging. I would really rather talk to the person in person. Especially if it's a girl. I'm not a smooth talker regardless of the situation, but at least I could make some goofy faces or jokes.
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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby Black ICE » Mon Dec 17, 2007 3:28 pm UTC

i'm all for loud parties, so long as i don't have to dance :oops: i suck at that. On another note, the only time i've been in a tree with a laptop, was to use my neighbor's WiFi internet connection, luckly it wasn't Mrs. Roberts....

It took me a min. to get this comic, due to the perspective. But they are at a party, thinking about sitting in a tree using laptops, what EXACTLY the meaning is? I have no clue :shock:

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Re: "Loud Party" discussion

Postby RockoTDF » Mon Dec 17, 2007 3:37 pm UTC

Just a thought: At my college (where Randall went) there are a few trees that nerds loved to climb and hang out in, although the hippies have taken them over as of late. Perhaps this is somehow related to that.
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