🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩
Oh Deer 🦌
The Thought Gap 🧠
I was sitting in my as-yet-to-be-named home office this morning when this big boy ☝️☝️☝️ walked out of the woods into my yard. It’s the opening day of deer season in Missourah, a day of significance for many local inhabitants on par with their wedding days, which, after all, could happen on any old day while the start of deer season is firmly pegged to but one.
I watched as he cautiously stepped into the morning sun and then realized he was hot on the tail of some hot tail I’d missed stepping into my scene before he did.
I once watched through the scope of a 30.06 as a Russian wild boar had his way with a particularly ugly lass and then promptly put a bullet through his back from about 150 yards. But I feel like I’ve changed since then. I don’t really have any inclination to shoot and kill animals anymore. I mean, once society crumbles and Wal-Mart doesn’t have what I need to eat, sure. But right now? Well, my instinct was just to take in the scene, capture a few pictures and watch as the buck did what the buck wants to do at this time of year.
📚 Let’s Learn Something Together 📓🖊️
So here’s a little bit of research that surprised me: People are thinking about you more than you think. This makes me somewhat of a bad parent. In coaxing both Boys the Elder and Younger out of their shells, I’ve gone with the maxim that I think I first heard in a church. “Don’t worry about what people think because people don’t think about you as much as you think they do.”
According to new research published in the October Journal of Experimental Psychology, it turns out we regularly underestimate how much people think of us. The researchers even coined a term for this: The Thought Gap.
Think of it this way: We spend about half the hours we’re not asleep communicating, often through talking. After we talk to people — be it with our friends or family or strangers or shrinks — we think about those conversations later on. We replay what was said (or if you’re like me, the witty comebacks we should have said and will say the next time we have the opportunity). The Thought Gap is the blind spot we have to the fact that the people we were talking with do the exact same thing.
The researchers note that this Thought Gap isn’t there in all relationships. An adult child thinks about his mom less often than his mom thinks about him, for example. But the research showed that The Thought Gap is remarkably stable across a wide variety of conversation and relationship types — everything from pairs of friends to strangers in the lab, mindless chit chat to arguments. We think about these conversations, but we assume the other people aren’t doing the same thing.
This Thought Gap grows over time. The more hours that pass between a conversation, the less time we think a person is thinking about it in proportion to the headspace we’re giving it.
Think about that the next time you’re about to snap at someone or have the opportunity to build someone one. Your words leave a mark that doesn’t go away because of your beliefs about the conversation or the intentions of your utterances. It remains.
Technology, the researchers note, has allowed us to bridge physical distances to communicate better and at deeper levels. The biggest limitation, it seems, is our inability to bridge the distance between our own thoughts and another’s. We deem our minds to be different, but what we’re not seeing is that what we say matters in the lives of everyone we come in contact with.
That inability to put ourselves in another’s shoes is what truly is causing us to fracture.
The ‘What Did You Say?’ of the Day
High Five ✋
Today’s official endorsement goes to Pearl Jam’s 1994 performance of their hit song ‘Black’ on MTV Unplugged. When Eddie sings, “I know someday you’ll have a beautiful life/I know you’ll be a star in somebody else’s sky/But why/Why/Why can’t it be mine?” man, I still feel that shit.
In Other Writing …
I was in my 40s by the time I realized the average person doesn’t feel things like I do — not even close. Up until then, I always just assumed that when people were around someone who was feeling some sad or angry or even extremely happy, they felt that shit too. I’m not talking…Keep reading
Today’s Reasons to Keep Living
- Wifey Poo rolled back into our lives after a weekend homeschool mom’s retreat.
- Someone, somewhere is thinking about me in a fond way (I hope), and I don’t even know it.
- Pour-over coffee.
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Wakey Wakey My day started off with a bag-full of my blood being drained, filled with ozone and then dripped back into my while I listened to a cancer patient banter about QAnon insanity as if it were gospel with the nurse in charge of my treatment. How was your morning? So Long, Sonny Boy…Keep reading
Interesting Things You Say to Your Spouse “Please don’t get killed by anyone using a sharp object. I don’t want to go to prison for the rest of my life.” This sentence that I said to Wifey-Poo this morning makes sense if you have a spouse who loves murder podcasts and TV shows. My hands…Keep reading
Welcome to the World of Real Estate Starting a new job today was a welcome relief from the drudgery of moving. After getting my ass kicked yesterday in the Great Fridge Swap, I welcomed the opportunity to use my brain instead of whatever physical power I might have left. This is the first time I’m…Keep reading
Perspective Matters I don’t know exactly when I learned it or from whom, but I’ve held “righty-tighty, lefty-loosey” as a Truth-capital-T for a long, long time. Today I learned it’s a matter of perspective. Yesterday, I bragged about how I have become Mr. Fix-It. Today, the God of Home Improvement (Tim Allen?) smacked me in…Keep reading
Begone, Cabinet! There was a time not long ago when I had zero self-confidence with home repair or renovation projects. It seemed as if every time I tried something, I made the situation worse and often a lot worse. This runs counter to my DNA, as my father is constantly tinkering with things and fixing…Keep reading
Moving Is Fun … … when someone else does it. At just before 9 a.m., movers from Two Men and a Truck arrived at our Wentzville house. There were four men. Within three hours, they’d loaded up all the crap we had boxed and the furniture and other assorted LifeJunk we’ve accumulated through the years.…Keep reading
He Got the Shot I took Boy the Younger to get his first COVID vaccine today. He’s 12. I consider this the socially responsible thing to do, and, after struggling for months now with Longhaul COVID, I’m really not all that open to hearing the other side of the vaccine debate. I’ve made up my…Keep reading