*we put the "mmm" in communism


This is the personal blog of Tim. Here, Tim writes on anything he has enough inspiration to finish a post on. That usually ends up being matters of science, pop culture, technology, religion, and philosophy.

This blog is around nine years old, which is over a third of Tim's current age. Back in 2003, it was called "Of Tim: Tim's life - or lack thereof", and it was as bad as you might expect the blog of a freshman in high school to be. Tim hopes that his writing is a little better, these days.

Tim welcomes any input that you, the dear reader, might have. Comments are very much appreciated, especially if you have a dissenting opinion. If you'd like to learn more about Tim, you might want to see his facebook or google+.

Also: Tim is a very avid consumer of various sorts of music. You may be interested in his playlists!

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offensive perhaps
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To anyone who is deeply insulted by the mention of poop, feces, or the act of defecation, I sincerely apologize for this post. It is rife. Really, really rife.

Of late, I've found myself pondering a large number of bizarre alternate reality scenarios, spurred on by my increasing awareness of how arbitrary many of the things we do are. There are innumerable ways in which the world could function differently. The differences might even be sub-optimal for efficiency of purpose, but the same could be true of our world as it stands now. A huge number of our actions are fundamentally born of tradition; they aren't necessarily based off of a rigorous formula of logic, effectiveness, or functionality, but often times can instead be traced back to tradition. Easy example: very few people use forks and knives because they've analyzed all of the various eating utensils and have deduced that forks and knives are the superior tool for consuming food. Tradition and convenience are ultimately what have lead us to forks and knives (among many other things), in the 21st century.

Resisting the forces of conformity is arguably the most inconvenient choice we can make. People often use conformity as a dirty word, but it's just an easy way of describing the least disruptive path of action in any given situation. Disruptive can be good or bad - it's all contextual. Social pressures aside, even the physical infrastructure of society enforces or discourages practically every type of behavior. With this in mind, I once asked of my friends while we sat in a food court eating our dinner: what if societal norms dictated that we ate alone and pooped together?

Think of all the ways that society would be different.

* Dining rooms and bathrooms would have their roles entirely reversed.
* Perhaps it would be normal to cook together, but once all the food has been prepared, everyone would split off into their personal dining rooms. Since people eat alone, it is likely that eating habits would be pretty uncivilized. Cutlery and napkins would probably not be in high use, since no one's there to criticize methods of eating. It's not like anyone's ever taught the "right" way to poop.
* Food would probably be valued more for its effects on defecation than for taste. Realistically, this could be a very viable way of following what your body needs most!
* Conversation about pooping would very certainly be open and frank. People would not laugh at poop jokes. People would laugh at eating jokes.
* Toilets would absolutely be mobile. Toilets might even be integrated into cars, movie theaters, and meeting rooms. High-powered meeting with the CEO? More like high-powered pooping.
* Fast food restaurants? More like fast poop restaurants.
* You know that romantic comedy you love, where they're eating dinner in a fancy restaurant? Yeah, in this world, they're just pooping. Together. Chew on that for a minute.
* Those awkward times when you accidentally walk in on someone in the bathroom? They wouldn't be pooping. They'd be eating.

I feel like the first question someone would ask in response to reading something like this is: why does this question matter? It's a fair question, given that the subject of this post is purely hypothetical and, on the surface, offers very little in terms of insight about the real world. Or does it?

Personally, in imagining how utterly ridiculous the world could be, I more readily see how ridiculous the world actually is. Have you ever seen a platypus? Do you know how bonkers quantum physics is? How weird is it that our chief sign of public romantic affection is kissing? Think about the act of a kiss! Describe it in words, out loud, and it can very quickly reveal its true nature as an incredibly bizarre behavior. Our world is, without a doubt, completely and utterly ridiculous. It's also amazing, and the more I learn of it, the more enthralled I become with the opportunity to experience it to the fullest extent possible.

My consumption of nature documentaries these last several months has been nothing less than voracious, and my appetite for knowledge seems to compound itself as I feed it more. I only wish this hunger had started sooner.

Tunng - Bullets
- youtube

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is probably the most sophisticated poop joke you'll ever get from me.
posted by MC Froehlich at

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