Thinking out loud

Discussions on behavioral ecology, evolutionary psychology, neurology, endocrinology, game theory, etc.

Thinking out loud

Postby BadgerJelly on May 9th, 2017, 5:01 am 

I was listening to a guy today watching TV and found his behavior very curious. I then realized we all do this to varying degrees.

He was watching what I presumed to be some boxing match, alone. He was giving a occasional commentary such as "Oh, he's down now!", "What a hit!". I started asking myself why he was doing this? He was obviously aware he was speaking out loud, but was certainly not indicating anything he was viewing to anyone else. Nor did I get the impression he was doing this for attention or to try and get other people to become involved.

After a few minutes of this (not seeing the screen) I realized he was watching "wrestling", and the fact that he was blatantly American helped me to understand his participation more given that these fights are staged and all the commentary involved in these matches is catered to get the viewer to "buy into" the fantasy of the mock fighting.

I then thought back to events I had watched on TV alone and how I had verbally expressed thoughts too. I realsied I am as nutty as the guy watching the "Wrestling". This also reminded me strongly of what Darren Brown (illusionist from UK) said about pantomimes we perform to announce that we are not acting irrationally. eg. if we suddenly remember we've forgotten something we don't simply stop moving and turn around and go back. What we actually do is utter something like "Oh shit!" and raise our hands to our heads for no other purpose other than to appear sane and announce to anyone watching that we have forgotten something instead of them thinking we are peculiar for simply stopping down in our tracks and turning around without explaination. Even when alone we will perform these little pantomimes to ourselves when we forget something or such.

So, my question is was the guy watching the TV performing a pantomime of a kind? It did not seem so. What was he doing?

note: more a philosophical question here. I have been reading Wittgenstein lately so the use of language and thought has been on my mind.
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