0374: "Journal"

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epsilondelta
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby epsilondelta » Fri Jan 25, 2008 4:53 am UTC

Haha! I ride the bus to school and might have to try this. Black Hat Man has been my favorite for awhile, and this just elevated him to unprecedented heights.

RaisedByMongrels
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby RaisedByMongrels » Fri Jan 25, 2008 6:28 am UTC

It really bothers me that it's this one comic, that out off all the things Black Hat Man gets up to it's this one that is offending people (and this one alone, they claim.) It seems that giving making someone uncomfortable with a glance is worse that feeding rocks to children, attacking random people with a bobcat, killing nerds, or kidnapping celebrities. What am I missing?


Like I said, those other things are so over-the-top ridiculous that no one would ever actually do them. That's what makes them funny.

Also, no one every posted on the thread for those other comics that they were seriously going to try it for themselves. That's the disturbing part.

AySz88
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby AySz88 » Fri Jan 25, 2008 7:02 am UTC

[edit] Sorry for making a tl;dr sort of first post.

JayDee wrote:It really bothers me that it's this one comic, that out off all the things Black Hat Man gets up to it's this one that is offending people (and this one alone, they claim.) It seems that giving making someone uncomfortable with a glance is worse that feeding rocks to children, attacking random people with a bobcat, killing nerds, or kidnapping celebrities. What am I missing?


It's not really the comic itself that offended me. It's the reminder/memory that there are real people that do this sort of crap. I think that quite a lot of people have, or used to have, an irrational fear of rejection* just like the rejection felt by the (allegedly real) girl in the comic - everyone's had some sort of thought like "damn, I wouldn't like to be dissed like that" during one's adolescence, right? This took me back to those days for a moment. This is the first xkcd that I can remember where I have thought the comic will probably end reinforcing peoples' fears**. It makes me feel kinda sick - I've thought of xkcd as just the opposite, and had been taking it as a source of inspiration.

*And to head off the possible counter: No, fear of rejection is not inherently bad. I could go on and on about how the fear of rejection is generally normal, since the feeling of rejection actually is bad, and how it's more that irrational fear that's bad, and how making the irrational fear real is so damaging, and so on. Is there no empathy anymore?

**I'm sure this wasn't what was meant by the comic, though. See below.

mandalynn wrote:Exactly! No one got offended and complained that people were going to read xkcd and then feed rocks to children or poke holes in condoms. But glaring at a shy girl on the bus...now that's a different story. Clearly everyone is going to read about it in xkcd and go try it out themselves...
(line break inserted)
...and it will destroy the world. I'm sure there are already people out there who would do something like this, and they certainly didn't get the idea from xkcd. It's a comic strip. Get over it.


I thought this post was insightful, until that last bit. Even if it destroys a few peoples'* weeks and not the world, isn't it too much?** And this thread itself proves that people are indeed "getting the idea" from xkcd - just read the responses. There are plenty of morally-questionable people who think to themselves, "That's great, I'd do that if it not for <insert undesirable consequences here> which would happen in real life and aren't shown in the comic." But here, the consequences are known. The interaction has already been done in real life, though probably not intentionally to cause hurt. And really, the comic already captures all the consequences. If the target was chosen correctly: there aren't any consequences at all***.

I'm sure the comic wasn't meant to promote this - I'm thinking it probably wanted to make the point that this asshole act is (or should be) considered just as bad as all those other things that the classhole does. I wish this sort of inverted promotion didn't happen, but it does, every time. The only other good example that I can think of right now is the show All in the Family, which made fun of the main character's exaggerated racism, but ended up promoting racism almost as well as it fought against it.

Saying "it's [only] a comic strip" certainly ignores the beneficial effects that xkcd have had on its audience (or at least myself) already. It has the potential to do just as much harm, and that power, I think, should be recognized and respected.

* One of the previous posters is right, it's not just girls who could be targeted, but guys, too.
** I assume that the hurt generated is much greater than the satisfaction of the person doing the hurting. But I have only even come close to experiencing the 'hurt' side, so I don't know for certain. I can't imagine there'd be enough benefit to person doing the hurting to justify it, though.
*** Except maybe a guilty conscience, if one's empathy hadn't picked up on "this is actually going to hurt the other person" ahead of time.

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Govneh » Fri Jan 25, 2008 7:50 am UTC

Wow, the point has been missed. This comic illustrates nothing more than the comedic nature of faux cruel and mean acts. How many of you have ever picked on someone before? Be honest. But as we grow, we (for the most part) realize and accept that these acts are unacceptable. Not humorless, just not appropriate. They remain funny. Therefore, in a pantomime such as a comic strip, seeing such a "mean-spirited" act carried into fruition is amusing.

Not to mention how entirely not cruel the classhole's action was. He glared at someone. Here comes my Oh Nose face...

And the humor isn't even born out of the cruelty of the act. It's the surprise of it. I know I though it was going to be a sappy ending.

Plus, anyone who has actually rode the bus knows the hilarity in this. I've caught two cases of the stalker, five or six of the retard (one of which almost attacked me) plus the assorted homeless/smelly/fat/welfare person sitting on my lap instead of the rest of the bus. But no worries, the penicillin took care of it all...

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mandalynn
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby mandalynn » Fri Jan 25, 2008 8:08 am UTC

Govneh, you basically typed my thoughts. Thank you for expressing a sentiment I clearly couldn't.

Side note -- It looks like this thread has many people's first posts.

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Govneh » Fri Jan 25, 2008 8:16 am UTC

mandalynn wrote:Side note -- It looks like this thread has many people's first posts.


And I'll never forget you, dearest forum post which took my cherry. Like Pringles, once you pop....

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Arancaytar » Fri Jan 25, 2008 10:18 am UTC

JayDee wrote:
RaisedByMongrels wrote:I like Black Hat Man when his pranks are either in retribution for something (like the bass destroying machine) or so off-the-wall that they are hilarious (like mailing bobcats to people).

This one is different. Black Hat Man is going out of his way to be mean to nice people just for the sake of being mean. Then he takes pleasure in telling someone about it later. I don't understand what part is supposed to be funny.
It really bothers me that it's this one comic, that out off all the things Black Hat Man gets up to it's this one that is offending people (and this one alone, they claim.) It seems that giving making someone uncomfortable with a glance is worse that feeding rocks to children, attacking random people with a bobcat, killing nerds, or kidnapping celebrities. What am I missing?


Suspension of realism. Sending bobcats or kidnapping celebrities, etc. is not something the average person would find themselves able to do - and in fact all of them are things that the law prohibits and will pursue. This trivial, random act of evil is one that the law has absolutely no hold on. There is nothing in its way except for morality.
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby droptone » Fri Jan 25, 2008 12:49 pm UTC

Govneh wrote:Not to mention how entirely not cruel the classhole's action was. He glared at someone. Here comes my Oh Nose face...


So exploiting someone's (emotional) weakness is not considered immoral? Especially if there is nothing to gain but smug satisfaction, since it isn't as though he's trying to make her stronger. He is entirely indifferent to what happens as a result from this interaction except for pleasuring of his sick sense of humor.

And yes, this comic sparked outrage because a good portion of the people who frequent this comic and this board are below the mean when it comes to social skills. So they took it as a slap in the face by Mr. Classhole.

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tradiuz
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby tradiuz » Fri Jan 25, 2008 3:00 pm UTC

The really scary part is if a girl ever did this to me now. I'd have to ask if she reads xkcd. Then if she says no, my soul will be thoroughly crushed, for the rest of the bus/subway ride at least.
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby redneckracin » Fri Jan 25, 2008 4:09 pm UTC

guys while I agree this was unusually un-classy of the otherwise brilliant man-with-black-hat I don't really understand the outrage expressed by some posters.

i think this is a brilliant piece of social commentary. I think it perfectly articulates asshole-ery in the real world. We all know it exists so why are we suddenly offended and shocked when we see it in an xkcd comic? My assumption agrees with something a previous poster points out. Many if not all of us are that nerd who wishes he were in the situation man-in-black-hat was in. The fact that he used the situation to be an asshole feels like a slap in the face. Are we all a little outraged because this time we were the victims of the classhole?

BTW I lol'ed hard at this comic and then thought myself a terrible person immediately afterwords

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Sprocket » Fri Jan 25, 2008 5:06 pm UTC

Wednesdays made me SO happy, because it took place on the red line! I was waiting for the day when he'd draw the red line, the he did. And I was happy. Then it was really really mean, and I was kind of sad, so I killed Davean. ...he got better.

Spoiler:
I mean seriously, Randall couldn't have been the douche bag who would do something like that, so the only possible suspect was Davean...it's a logical conclusion.
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Govneh
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Govneh » Fri Jan 25, 2008 6:30 pm UTC

droptone wrote:And yes, this comic sparked outrage because a good portion of the people who frequent this comic and this board are below the mean when it comes to social skills. So they took it as a slap in the face by Mr. Classhole.


Outrage? Seriously? You have to be kidding. Little strong for a comic strip. And I highly doubt you have a monopoly on low social skills. Not to make the claim that I do, no, I've surpassed those days, but I'd bet you actually get out of the house and can talk to people, albeit uncomfortable probably. If we really wanted, we could get into the differences between low self confidence and actual social disorders & true lack of social skills, but that's not the point here.

So since this is such a "slap in the face", do you act like the girl? The motivation behind her actions are marked by the journal, the thought process of "well, he journals, so he must be kind and sensitive". Upon seeing a journal or like symbolic object, do you respond in a similar manner? Smile in a pleasant but oh-so-shy way? Odds are, you do what the rest of us nerds do, you sit and look...well, to reference the actual strip...angsty and try not to make eye contact with other passengers, going out of your way to neither initiate nor perpetuate notice of you or contact of any sort, being invisible and angry.

Of course, all of this could possibly be spawned by my hatred of any sort of public transportation. That, and my amusement of pantomimed cruelty. Because this comic truly is funny.

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Fauna » Fri Jan 25, 2008 7:09 pm UTC

I'm more amused by the rampant cases of "really over analyzing it" of this than the actual comic itself (totally thought the comic was funny btw, despite being one of those shy girls).

People. It's just a comic.
And furthermore, not all shy girls aren't all fragile, wimpy, delicate little violets whose fragile hearts will shatter with every action of a mean man with hat.
(Remember elementary/middle/high school? Remember how shy/introverted people have to deal with others going "weird quiet freak" all the time? Yeah.
Let's not forget also that girls are usually the ones who can deal out the most emotional damage. I can assure you, we girls are much harsher with each other.)


Sure some people will feel compelled to be assholes and act it out. However, think. How many people will be really deeply affected for more than perhaps a hour at best? If it's just another event on an already shitty day, perhaps. Overall, it's unlikely that anyone will really dwell on this individual event of assholeishness.
Girls know how to move on and get over it. Girls are also aware of the concept of "the last laugh".
(Example: I used to joke with my little circle of friends about how two of the guys who pick on me all the time always sit just a little too close together if you know what I mean.)

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Govneh » Fri Jan 25, 2008 10:05 pm UTC

Fauna wrote:I'm more amused by the rampant cases of "really over analyzing it" of this than the actual comic itself (totally thought the comic was funny btw, despite being one of those shy girls).

People. It's just a comic.
And furthermore, not all shy girls aren't all fragile, wimpy, delicate little violets whose fragile hearts will shatter with every action of a mean man with hat.
(Remember elementary/middle/high school? Remember how shy/introverted people have to deal with others going "weird quiet freak" all the time? Yeah.
Let's not forget also that girls are usually the ones who can deal out the most emotional damage. I can assure you, we girls are much harsher with each other.)


Sure some people will feel compelled to be assholes and act it out. However, think. How many people will be really deeply affected for more than perhaps a hour at best? If it's just another event on an already shitty day, perhaps. Overall, it's unlikely that anyone will really dwell on this individual event of assholeishness.
Girls know how to move on and get over it. Girls are also aware of the concept of "the last laugh".
(Example: I used to joke with my little circle of friends about how two of the guys who pick on me all the time always sit just a little too close together if you know what I mean.)

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby neon » Fri Jan 25, 2008 11:30 pm UTC

krynd wrote:neon, I, like most nerd-type people (wanted to say "nerd-type objects", but this isn't meant to be SmallTalk, lol), do test "relatively positive" for Asperger's syndrome. Something like 78% positive. Anyway, it's not at the point where my doctor finds it necessary to treat me (I'm not depressed and rather like being mildly antisocial. I feel it makes me somewhat unique).


Well then perhaps you should stick to things you know? And it doesn't make you unique, it makes you normative for your diagnosis. Seriously, aspies have real problems with social relationships. I also think you should look into cognitive/behavioral therapy or DBT, Dialectical-Behavioral Therapy for Borderline Personality Disorder. It will teach you some basic skills for interpersonal relationships that you clearly lack. Again, this is not snark, I'm giving you honest feedback that I think you could use and will objectively improve your life.
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savage
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby savage » Sat Jan 26, 2008 5:33 am UTC

I figured it out!

It's not funny because:
1) it's just an ordinary douche-like thing to do to someone. Requires a little effort to set up, but in the end, couldn't you and I do the exact same thing without going too far out of our way? I think it has less to do with the how 'imitable' the act is and more to do with the fact that Black Hat Man's antics are in general bizarre. Hyperbole works as a comedic device because part of the humor is the fact that we are willing to stretch our suspension of disbelief that far. A guy giving a derisive look to a girl on a train doesn't require any stretch of disbelief at all.

2) If you really think about it, Black Hat Man is just a tad more 'cartoony' than the rest of the xkcd crew. So in order to be humorous, the subjects of his cruelty have to be viewed through that framework. Randall builds sympathy for the girl and then stomps. To give an example: I have a feeling Bugs Bunny cartoons would be a lot less funny if at the beginning for about a minute and a half they showed Elmer Fudd and his family worrying about a meager food supply for the winter, then Elmer dons his hat, kisses his wife on the cheek, and goes out to hunt for supper for their hungry children. And then Bugs Bunny beats him up for the next 10 minutes.

3) I think someone else touched on it before, that the audience has something to do with the reception. For instance, someone watching a romantic comedy would probably be jarred by a scene suddenly including crass jokes about, say, the World Trade Center terrorist attack. Said jokes might go over just fine at a comedy club where people are expecting irreverence and off-color humor. xkcd's audience wasn't expecting a joke which comes across as a teasing slap in the face at romantics. Doesn't necessarily mean the joke isn't funny. Probably would go over better in an atmosphere of tongue-planted-firmly-in-cheek cynicism, though.

If you're not able to accept that, well, just think Randall had an off day and ignore it.
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genewitch
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby genewitch » Sat Jan 26, 2008 7:48 pm UTC

krynd wrote:
Balkash wrote:HOW COME IT'S ALWAYS THE CLASSHOLES THAT GET THE GIRLS AND NOT ME!

The classhole doesn't get the girl. He specifically says how he alienates them for fun.

As far as why she'd sit near him, perhaps it's his mystique. I know a lot of social people are intrigued by people who keep to themselves, and tend to want to see "what they're doing". This probably comes from an inherent fear of the unknown. Like they say: don't fear the loudmouthed idiot, fear the quiet kid in the back of the library who's reading "The Anarchist's Cookbook" and laughing his a** off.

It's a very interesting book, btw. I recommend it to all antisocial malcontents, or those who are just curious about what skills are /really/ necessary survive a raptor attack.


i own "recipes"; about the only thing i don't agree with is the need for veganism. other than that, they're really spot on. :-)

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby icarus » Sat Jan 26, 2008 8:21 pm UTC

hehe, this character is great.

it is kinda sad, but i like the classhle. he has a certain, classiness. as mentioned, good comic, but the alt text adds art to its repertoire. it's a little teary.

AySz88
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby AySz88 » Sat Jan 26, 2008 10:26 pm UTC

Govneh wrote:This comic illustrates nothing more than the comedic nature of faux cruel and mean acts. How many of you have ever picked on someone before? Be honest. But as we grow, we (for the most part) realize and accept that these acts are unacceptable. Not humorless, just not appropriate. They remain funny. Therefore, in a pantomime such as a comic strip, seeing such a "mean-spirited" act carried into fruition is amusing.


I don't know what kind of upbringing you had (hey, you brought it up first), but I've never found this sort of thing funny. It appears that others agree. I think you're describing two completely different things. Teasing among your friends is normal when young. Being intentionally mean towards a friendly stranger is totally different.

droptone wrote:
Govneh wrote:Not to mention how entirely not cruel the classhole's action was. He glared at someone. Here comes my Oh Nose face...


So exploiting someone's (emotional) weakness is not considered immoral? Especially if there is nothing to gain but smug satisfaction, since it isn't as though he's trying to make her stronger. He is entirely indifferent to what happens as a result from this interaction except for pleasuring of his sick sense of humor.

And yes, this comic sparked outrage because a good portion of the people who frequent this comic and this board are below the mean when it comes to social skills. So they took it as a slap in the face by Mr. Classhole.


Agree with droptone (viewtopic.php?p=499742#p499742). Though I was outraged a little more indirectly, by the thoughts "this is supposed to be funny??" and "oh crap, now people are going to try this IRL", not by the strip itself.

Govneh wrote:And the humor isn't even born out of the cruelty of the act. It's the surprise of it. I know I though[t] it was going to be a sappy ending.


It was the classhole - I'm pretty sure that most regular readers knew he'd be an asshole. I'd be more surprised if he wasn't mean. Maybe it'd be funny if, like you, I didn't expect it.

Out of curiosity, was this the first xkcd strip [with the classhole] that you read? Or did you not notice it was the classhole? Or something else?

Fauna wrote:I'm more amused by the rampant cases of "really over analyzing it" of this than the actual comic itself (totally thought the comic was funny btw, despite being one of those shy girls).

People. It's just a comic.
And furthermore, not all shy girls aren't all fragile, wimpy, delicate little violets whose fragile hearts will shatter with every action of a mean man with hat.
(Remember elementary/middle/high school? Remember how shy/introverted people have to deal with others going "weird quiet freak" all the time? Yeah.
Let's not forget also that girls are usually the ones who can deal out the most emotional damage. I can assure you, we girls are much harsher with each other.)


About "It's just a comic", see my post above. (i.e. comics can have life-changing effects, too, and xkcd in particular. For xkcd, they've mostly been positive.)

I'd bet that just as much reaction would be occurring if a girl was being mean to a shy guy. Perhaps more - there might be more [shy?] guys reading the comic than [shy?] girls. The genders have nothing to do with people empathizing with how the girl feels. And the argument that the act wasn't that bad because the girl would bring about self-reassuring "retaliation" (which never actually reaches the classhole) kinda falls flat to me.

[edits] added more arguments
[more edits] quoted droptone for truth

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby eternauta3k » Sat Jan 26, 2008 10:50 pm UTC

Like someone here said (can't find the post) it's kinda funny because it teases xkcd-ers' shyness and their crushes and idealizations of shy pretty strangers of the opposite sex. As for the alt text, I think it's what he really thinks (otherwise, why would he burn it?).
You can't seriously criticize it because it might give ideas to some of the nutjobs out there. And, to the people who said "I'm gonna try this", I hope it's a joke (I like to think the average xkcd reader is above that)
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby tehmoth » Sun Jan 27, 2008 5:34 am UTC

reading this, I thought I had stumbled on a stick figure version of a softer world

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby krynd » Sun Jan 27, 2008 6:08 am UTC

Strangely enough, neon, I probably will end up looking into those, if only because someday I'll want to leave my cube (although I'm keeping my Weighted Companion Cube). Also, Wikipedia scared me for the first time since I read the Raptor page. Well, the truth is absolution, or so they say.

Anyway, society isn't here to make me feel better, as cranberrytuna said; and neither is xkcd. I tried to make a statement for the introverts (stop assuming we want to be extroverted! Stop assuming there's "something wrong" with us!), and end up accused of insanity (bringing my personal slant on the topic didn't help).

geneswitch, are you talking about Recipes For Disaster? Personally I think that's the better of the "Anarchist cookbooks". (Quick explanation for those not familiar with both works:) When I talked about the original one, the reference to "laughing your a** off" both refers to the insane content (how to grow pot, bananadine, making thermite, pipe bombs, etc) and the innacuracy of the content (bananadine is purely fictional. Of course, since you'd probably only smoke a banana peel if you were high already (or burned out completely), I suppose it might indirectly work). In short: don't be a n00b and blow yourself up because you read something somewhere. Do your research on proper protocols and do it somewhere far away from population centers (like, the middle of the desert, or forest). (Next To) Last: just don't practice anything from the books, at all. It's a terrible idea, and you'll probably end up killing yourself far before you actually make a successful bomb. Finally, don't hold me, the creators of the books, any torrents (we all know you probably did it), xkcd, or anyone else responsible for your actions (or those of anyone else for that matter). It's just lame, and no one forced you to do it.

Both are good books, and definately give you some new ideas when reading Post Office Showdown.
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby phoenixineohp » Sun Jan 27, 2008 8:20 am UTC

Story Weaver wrote:I choose to believe that the shy girl on the train is so upset that she doesn't look where she's going and bumps into a nice guy on the way out of the station. He happens to be reading the same book as her, and they live happily ever afterwards.

What? It could happen in the xkcd universe, and probably did.


I was surprised and saddened by the number of posters who sided with the classhole until I read your comment. It's perfect. And it's a complete reassurance. It no longer scares me that Randall could have thought of this, or that people wanted to do it. Because it will work out in the end as a win for the good side. Excellent.

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Govneh » Sun Jan 27, 2008 6:48 pm UTC

AySz88 wrote:I don't know what kind of upbringing you had (hey, you brought it up first), but I've never found this sort of thing funny. It appears that others agree. I think you're describing two completely different things. Teasing among your friends is normal when young. Being intentionally mean towards a friendly stranger is totally different.

Horribly sick and twisted one. Actually, I'm usually on the receiving end of this kind of behavior (still haven't figured out why) even into adulthood when it becomes less cruel and more just teasing, but I still find this funny. But, lo, maybe it's bred of my hatred of people trying to start conversations with me on the bus. Strangers scare me. :( However, such is life and, doing what I do, I have to interact anyways. Consider it more a laugh at myself if nothing else.
AySz88 wrote:It was the classhole - I'm pretty sure that most regular readers knew he'd be an asshole. I'd be more surprised if he wasn't mean. Maybe it'd be funny if, like you, I didn't expect it.

Out of curiosity, was this the first xkcd strip [with the classhole] that you read? Or did you not notice it was the classhole? Or something else?

Not the first, by a long shot. May have not paid attention and consciously took the time to go "Oh hey, it's the classhole! I bet he's going to do something mean, oh that classhole..." More that a sentimental, sweet mood is established only to be destroyed by his cruel act towards the girl. That's the surprise and the crushing blow that creates the humor.

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby neon » Sun Jan 27, 2008 8:27 pm UTC

krynd wrote:Strangely enough, neon, I probably will end up looking into those, if only because someday I'll want to leave my cube (although I'm keeping my Weighted Companion Cube). Also, Wikipedia scared me for the first time since I read the Raptor page. Well, the truth is absolution, or so they say.

Anyway, society isn't here to make me feel better, as cranberrytuna said; and neither is xkcd. I tried to make a statement for the introverts (stop assuming we want to be extroverted! Stop assuming there's "something wrong" with us!), and end up accused of insanity (bringing my personal slant on the topic didn't help).


I honestly don't understand why anyone would be genuinely afraid of an animal that went extinct 80 million years ago. Far as I can tell it just a common joke here probably related to seeing Jurassic Park when very young. Many people here seem to still be children so I imagine it's a way to deal with one's irrational fears.

BTW, one of the functions of society is to make one feel better, more connected, a valued part of a whole and so on. And cognitive/behavioral therapy is backed up with solid research and is one of the few treatment modalities that insurance companies will actually pay for because the real world experience is that it works. Think of it as hacking your social network.
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby '; DROP DATABASE;-- » Sun Jan 27, 2008 11:05 pm UTC

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Spoffin » Mon Jan 28, 2008 12:18 am UTC

RaisedByMongrels wrote:This one is different. Black Hat Man is going out of his way to be mean to nice people just for the sake of being mean. Then he takes pleasure in telling someone about it later. I don't understand what part is supposed to be funny.
See, to me, you've just perfectly described and summed up the part which is funny.
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Mon Jan 28, 2008 1:35 am UTC

Why does everyone assume that Black Hat Man is supposed to be an ethical guy, who only messes with annoying people like people who play loud music? In his first comic as a "classhole" he says he pokes holes in condoms for fun. This comic was hilarious, lighten up guys.
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby LeNea » Mon Jan 28, 2008 3:29 am UTC

This comic has stuck in my head more than many of the others. I guess I'm having a hard time with how the classhole's actions are at all, well, classy. It's juvenile. It doesn't really require any extra creativity to flirt with someone to get your own ego boost and them drop them like they're nothing. There's nothing spectacularly fiendish about it. He might as well stand up and yell "You got burned!"

I kinda hope some of the people saying they want to try this try this on me. I've been thinking of things the girl ought have said all week. :twisted:

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Spoffin » Mon Jan 28, 2008 4:10 am UTC

LeNea wrote:This comic has stuck in my head more than many of the others. I guess I'm having a hard time with how the classhole's actions are at all, well, classy. It's juvenile. It doesn't really require any extra creativity to flirt with someone to get your own ego boost and them drop them like they're nothing. There's nothing spectacularly fiendish about it. He might as well stand up and yell "You got burned!"

I kinda hope some of the people saying they want to try this try this on me. I've been thinking of things the girl ought have said all week. :twisted:

Sure, you can flirt with anyone and drop them, the thing that makes him a magnificent bastard (and that's what he is) is his choice of target and the method.
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby krynd » Mon Jan 28, 2008 4:36 am UTC

Yes, my post did include some references to xkcd memes (the raptor joke. Yes it is based off what you think it is. However, the joke isn't a way to deal with irrational fears, rather more to make fun of them), as well as some song quotes ("The truth is absolution" is a line in the song "My Last Serenade" by Killswitch Engage). I threw in a fairly obvious Portal reference (Weighted Companion Cube) too. Do I get cake now?

The reference to "society not being here to fix my problems" is (I thought) a clear reference to cranberrytuna's post (which I pointed out), where s/he stated that attention whores (which is basically what this little sub-thread is making me look like) will talk to people just to draw attention to themselves (usually by pointing out their problems and exaggerating the hell out of them). Other people call this "being selfish" or "rude", I call it sad. What I meant was that society in general is not here to help anyone out, but friends, family, and professionals are.

For instance, most people wouldn't appreciate it if someone walked up to them at the mall to tell them that "Corey (xkcd.com) Doctorow (Wikipedia) hates my blog". Maybe a close friend my sympathize, or my mother, but I'd hardly expect someone who doesn't know me to care whatsoever about my decidedly personal problems.

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Spoon_of_Doom » Mon Jan 28, 2008 2:26 pm UTC

krynd wrote:Do I get cake now?


Yes. Please lie down and assume the party escort submission position. :D
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby savage » Mon Jan 28, 2008 6:10 pm UTC

I'm suddenly and painfully aware of why I loathe webcomic forums again.
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Govneh » Mon Jan 28, 2008 7:16 pm UTC

krynd wrote:For instance, most people wouldn't appreciate it if someone walked up to them at the mall to tell them that "Corey (xkcd.com) Doctorow (Wikipedia) hates my blog".

No, but MC Frontalot does.

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby KaneElson » Tue Jan 29, 2008 3:03 am UTC

I agree with the negative sentiments about this comic.

  • People who say that she will just be confused and then go and laugh about it are making a huge assumption. If she is anything like me then she will be upset for the rest of day atleast.
  • This is probably the first comic that has actually disgusted me. I have read a few that have been "meh" but this one actually offended me.
  • Classholes act was not classy at all. He brought someones hopes up and then smashed them into the ground.
  • The worst part of this comic was the fact that people on this fora actually thought it would be funny to do it in real life. Fair enought if you think the comic is funny I respect your right to that, but don't you dare effect a real persons life by doing this to them. I feel like ignoring everyone on this fora that considered doing this to a real sensitive human.
  • For people complaining about others being social towards them on public transport: Put some headphones in bury your face in a book/mag and ignore them. They will get the hint. I have no idea why you would ever be too busy to be friendly. I would love for some nice people to actually talk to me.

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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby The Mighty Thesaurus » Wed Jan 30, 2008 7:49 am UTC

You (plural) just don't like being on the receiving end.

VectorZero wrote:http://xkcd.com/29/ Meh. Not a particularly good comic IMHO: it would appear Randall felt the joke needed an explicit summary in the alt-text.


That was one of my favourites.
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby luketheduke » Wed Jan 30, 2008 8:33 am UTC

(Sorry for answering to a very old post)

neon wrote:
luketheduke wrote:Well, I'll tell you: Society in itself is antisocial.

I think that you are confused about the meaning of the word "social". "Society in itself is antisocial" is a meaningless statement.


I am sorry, maybe you misintepreted me here. I do not mean a concept of society, I mean status-quo society. The very society I live in.

And maybe you think that sociopaths are worse than, well, the normal guy, I don't think agree entirely.
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby Sprocket » Wed Jan 30, 2008 3:48 pm UTC

mandalynn wrote:petsfed, you are awesome :)

I don't understand why people think this is sad.

I think it's a really great way to make fun of the people who don't have the guts to just talk to someone. :)

Seriously, what is awesome about being an asshole? It's a sign that you need to put people down to feel better about yourself, and little else.

I really and truly believe that Randall is not promoting this behavior. ::shrug::
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Re: "Journal" Discussion

Postby Belial » Wed Jan 30, 2008 4:23 pm UTC

Yeah, actually doing this is not so cool.

There is that evil part of one that wants to, though, which is why it's funny. Which is what Black Hat guy is, ultimately: the joy of being terrible to random strangers just for the grim amusement of watching bad things happen to them. It's funny in principle, less so in practice.

Thinking about this and giggling means you have a sense of humor. If you're offended by the idea itself, you may want to have that checked.

Actually *doing* it means you're kindof a dick. Don't do this. It's bad.

Edit: Also, am I the only one imagining a meeting between Black Hat guy and one of his emulators being kindof like the meeting between Nny and his "admirer" in JTHM?
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Re: Journal Discussion

Postby starkruzr » Wed Jan 30, 2008 8:01 pm UTC

savage wrote:I'm suddenly and painfully aware of why I loathe webcomic forums again.
Why post this? Or should we take your sig as the reason why?
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