Wednesday, 23 December 2009

The definition of insanity

I’ve remembered what I liked about that rather tacky, obvious, and capital-motivated article on MSN that I discussed five minutes ago.

It ends with the words: “they say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, hoping for different results!”

And the aromantic majority of my brain and the cynical majority of my brain joined together (as they do depressingly often) and thought ‘hmm... that’s also a really good definition of dating’.

Now, I ought to say, in fairness, that this doesn’t relate dating and insanity in any actual form at all. For a start (and I feel almost embarrassed to be this simplistic when the rest of the asexosphere rings to intelligent thoughts on the medicalisation of sexuality and the DSM IV) , that’s a really bad and obviously colloquial ‘definition’ of insanity. There are lots of times when, counter intuitively, doing the same thing and expecting different results is very sane. The problem is, dating falls across both these categories like a small circle in the centre of the standard Venn diagram*. Sometimes, it really does live up to this categorisation, and I can’t help but feel that only the incredible importance society places on dating makes people keep trying again and again, when they’d otherwise recognise that there’s something wrong at the root of whatever systems they’re following.

*Graphical representational tangent approaching:
A small circle placed across a standard Venn diagram would actually not be very accurate, because it would contain areas where repeating is a sensible thing to do and areas where it’s not, but also areas in the total population (probably ‘all scenarios in which you can repeat something expecting the same results’) which somehow don’t correspond to either ‘x’ or ‘not x’ and areas that somehow correspond to both. A better Venn diagram would be a square divided horizontally, vertically or diagonally into two sections, with the circle lying across this line.

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