Thursday, January 19, 2006

Just throwing some concentrate out

I had a friend in high school who said once, “I’m just throwing some concentrate out to see if we can make some juice.” It’s one of those pseudo-deep, late-night stoned kinda in-jokes that high school was all about. It also nicely captures the attitude of real brainstorming.

I have to admit that brainstorming is my favorite conversation type. I spend a lot of my day having internal conversations about things. How does this idea relate to that one? What are the problems with this? If I believe this is it consistent with what I believe here? So much so that it can be hard to concentrate.

Growing up I never thought others were like this, which is weird since my default assumption was that everyone was exactly like me. I remember being flabbergasted when I found out that no one else in my first grade class was double jointed.

I did eventually realize that other people liked to talk about ideas too. I didn’t have a typical college experience. I went to an urban college and never lived on campus and hung around with a lot of people who were either not in school or in school part time. But I remember bullshit sessions over beer that I assume are typical of college. And when I finally got to grad school, I was in heaven. Can you imagine, they were actually paying me (well, not a living wage, but it was a paycheck) to think about and discuss ideas?

Adjusting to life post-grad school was not easy. I miss the brainstorming conversations the most. I think that, coupled with nostalgia for my teen years, is what brought me back to role-playing games. Not everyone agrees on this, but one approach to role-playing games is to treat them as a brainstorming conversation. So yeah, group make-believe.

I probably need to find other outlets. My work is not particularly fruitful at this point. Sometimes the Internet helps, though most discussion boards are really for pissing matches. I don’t know that I will ever satisfy my need for brainstorming conversations. If you’d like to start one, drop me a line.

3 comments:

Eric said...

Uh, hello? Your two-time co-author here? Let's talk.

liberal elite said...

I feel so Dorothy: "Look no further than your own back yard." Oh we will talk.

argology said...

Growing up I never thought others were like this, which is weird since my default assumption was that everyone was exactly like me. I remember being flabbergasted when I found out that no one else in my first grade class was double jointed.

Ironically, if you had assumed that everyone else was just like you in that they assumed you were exactly like them, you would have been quite right.

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