What DOESN'T make you look fat!?
(Wow it's been a while since I've made a blog entry. @_@; I have to get back into it. :})
If we imagine this as a very simplified process of coming up with things to say:
[think it]->[decide whether to say it]->[say it]
The mechanisms each by themselves are fascinating. Thinking of something to say is an interesting area, encompassing cognitive linguistics, neuroscience, psychology, and all the other fun brain-related topics. The final part involves all the signals being sent from the brain to the mouth, so it can string phonemes into morphemes, morphemes into words, and words into sentences. (And these are only the things we say in terms of the content of our speech - for simplicity's sake, I'm ignoring suprasegmentals and body language.)
What I'm interested in is the middle part. The deciding whether to say it. I suppose we could dub this process the "internal filter".
Let's say your sister asks you whether she looks good in her new dress.
Imagine this as a simplified process:
1. [THOUGHT: It makes you look ugly]
2. [FILTER: If I say that, her feelings will be hurt. I care more about her feelings than telling her the truth. Therefore: reassess to something she wants to hear (bounce back to the first step)]
3. [THOUGHT: It makes her look good]
4. [FILTER: Acceptable by my (sub)conscious goals]
5. [SAY: It makes you look good]
(Naturally, such thoughts can occur very quickly. Stalling increases pressure for the system to speed up, which means the filter must become more permissive so as to allow something to be said. You don't have the liberty of constructing a perfect response for twenty minutes before coming up with an answer.)
Notice how you can bounce back and forth between mechanism one and two, in a kind of internal conflict: "Should I say this? No. How about this? No. How about this? Yes."
Today I was left thinking about my own "internal filter", and how comprehensive and thorough it was. I developed quite an effective internal filter (I believe) at quite an early age. Both on the internet and in real life, I try to think carefully about what I say. On one hand, it prevents a lot of fights or unpleasant situations. On the other hand, it masks my true personality. I wonder, to what extent would an optimal filter censor things you say? (It was posed as a rhetorical, but, come to think of it, I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on this.)
I suppose this is why I like the internet. Several times when I might've said something abrasive online I've been able to "self-censor", and keep the peace, so to speak. This is a positive effect. But I suppose it could be argued that it makes things less personal and honest.
To sum up my fragmented thoughts on this issue, I will use a smiley.
Posted October 13th, 2009 at 2:52 AM by poopnoodle
Posted October 13th, 2009 at 3:11 AM by Citrinin
Updated October 13th, 2009 at 3:17 AM by Citrinin
Posted October 13th, 2009 at 7:52 AM by poopnoodle
Posted October 13th, 2009 at 9:16 AM by Bay Alexison
Posted October 13th, 2009 at 3:30 PM by Citrinin
Posted October 13th, 2009 at 6:49 PM by Ineffable~
Posted October 14th, 2009 at 3:58 AM by Citrinin
Posted October 21st, 2009 at 6:19 PM by Luck