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Thursday, July 14, 2016

Always an excuse

John Scalzi ✔ @scalzi
Friends posting results of an online test to show they have a huge vocabulary. But it's not how many words you know. It's how you use them.

 John Scalzi ✔ @scalzi
Also, I suspect posting the results of an online test to show how smart/learned/nerdy you are is a test in itself, isn't it.

 John Scalzi ✔ @scalzi
I mean, don't get me wrong, have fun with online tests. Just maybe don't use them to re-litigate your performance on the SAT.

Translation: he scored below the top one percent and is ashamed to admit it.

Which would be no surprise, considering that he's not in the top two percent of IQ either. Neither, as it happens, is Wil Wheaton, which didn't stop him from delivering a rather cringe-worthy speech to American Mensa:
I am now going to talk to you about something that I think is the geekiest thing of all, a thing that most of us have in common, regardless of which particular part of geek culture we hold closest to our hearts: anxiety.

I have this thing called Imposter Syndrome, and I guess it’s fairly common among creative people. The way it works is this part of my brain that’s supposed to be on my side but is really a dick about everything goes, “You know, you suck at everything and you don’t deserve to be here and nobody likes you because you suck. Boy do you suck. You are the suckiest bunch of sucks that ever sucked.”

This voice is relentless, even though I’m supposed to be successful enough to ignore it and show it physical evidence of its bullshit in the form of awards and a happy marriage and two awesome kids, it never, ever, ever shuts up. But while I was preparing for tonight, it overplayed its hand. It filled me with so much anxiety, it reminded me of an article I read about a study which indicated that highly intelligent people tend to have generalized anxiety and other mental health issues at a rate that is significantly greater than a control group.

And when I read that, I knew that I wanted to talk about it. because it doesn’t matter if I’m just a writer or just an actor or just a geek or just any of the things my stupid brain tells me I “just” am. All of us here, at one time or another in our lives, have had a hard time relating to people who just don’t get us. We are constantly surrounded by people who just see a loaf of bread, or don’t care how things work, as long as they work. They don’t stay up at night, unable to sleep, because they can’t stop thinking about how thin our atmosphere is, relative to the size of our planet, and how terrifying it is that we’re basically these tiny little things on a giant hunk of rock speeding through space at like 30 kilometers per second and what the hell is space, anyway? And if we really are in a computer simulation, what’s the computer running it in? And can I somehow break out of the program to find out? Wait. If I can think that, it’s just part of my programming so does that mean that free will is oh hey the sun is coming up and I haven’t slept at all.

And it’s not that we want to do this, right? It’s that we can’t help it. It doesn’t matter if you’re an engineer, an artist, an athlete, or a blacksmith. Look around you – everyone here has their own internal monologue. It’s what separates us from animals, that constant conversation going on in all our heads. And when we feel nervous about something – that voice is what helps us rise above the fight or flight instinct of animals – it can soothe us, talk us down, talk us up – or in some cases – blather on and make things worse. When you’re smart, and faced with a problem, this voice starts to break things down, so you can solve it. “Here is the problem. Here are its individual pieces. Now, how do we solve this rationally and logically.” It is not unreasonable to expect that by breaking down a problem into pieces, we should be able to make those pieces follow rules. And rules are comfortable and comforting and make us feel safe.

But anyone who has ever tried to reason with an unreasonable person knows that more frequently than we’d like, the pieces just will NOT follow the rules, even though they should follow the rules, because that’s the simplest and most efficient and most logical way to get things done. And here comes that voice again, only this time it’s telling us that everything is terrible and nothing will ever follow the rules and we’re all going to die and the frogurt is also cursed.

That voice speaks to me almost every day, and if I could just make it stop, I would, but I have mental illness. I have anxiety and depression, and I want you to know that if you do, too, you are not alone. If you’re like me, you get frustrated that the thing that makes you special, your big beautiful brain that is so smart and capable of so much more than some muggle’s brain is, actively fucks with you every day.

And it makes you wonder: If I’m so smart, why is my brain so dumb? Why can’t my brain just get with the program, and stop worrying about everything all the time? My life is great! I love my job. I love my family. I love my home and my pets. I love everything I get to do in this amazing world, and I haven’t even scratched the surface of what there is to explore on this planet! I make art that matters and I inspire people to do cool stuff … so why do I feel so terrible about myself all the time?

Oh, right. Because my brain is broken. There’s all sorts of interesting medical and neurochemical reasons for it, and I’ve learned everything I can about them, but knowing all of that isn’t enough to make my brain magically start processing serotonin and norepinephrine and dopamine in a balanced way, so that I won’t feel like my career is over when I’m not cast in The Dark Tower or Ready Player One,and feel like nothing is worth doing for days at a time, even though I know how irrational that is.

This is where being really smart is kind of the worst. All the skills that we’ve learned over the course of our lives, the things that set us apart from average people, they really don’t help. In fact, the frustration that we feel when those skills don’t work can actually make it all worse, because it’s not only unfair, it’s irrational! It isn’t following the rules, and this isn’t Vietnam, Dude.

And it makes you feel really, really alone. Like, you are the only person who has ever felt this way, and the only person who ever will feel this way, and if you just tried a little harder, you wouldn’t feel this way. But you do feel this way, because you’re alone. Yep, you’re alone and nobody can help you. In fact, it wouldn’t be surprised if you’re the only one with this infernal internal monologue. Look around you – nobody else seems to have this problem. It’s just you.
So anxiety is what makes the geek? No wonder I've never fit in with their weird little culture. What Wheaton is describing has nothing to do with being smart; I'm considerably smarter than him and I don't suffer from anxiety or Imposter Syndrome, much less depression. Moreover, I know many highly intelligent people who don't suffer from any of those things, but are very happy and well-adjusted individuals.

While there are probably some purely physical or developmental factors involved, the main reason people like Wheaton and Scalzi are unhappy and mentally broken is spiritual in nature. They are addicted to lies, a philosophical addiction that can be every bit as debilitating as a physical addiction. This addiction is a result of pride, as can be seen in Wheaton's references to "average people" and "muggles", and the fact that this pride is unjustified is the reason that Wheaton feels like an imposter. He feels like an imposter because he is an imposter.

Higher-than-average intelligence doesn't make you any better than anyone else, any more than being taller, or faster, or stronger does. What it often does, however, is allow others to convince you that you should be something different than you are, or than you want to be. Even worse, it gives you the ability to successfully rationalize away your failures, to both yourself and others. Thus are created the Secret Kings who never, ever lose to anyone at anything, and yet feel like failures and imposters all the same.

One thing I've noticed about all these people with broken minds is that none of them ever seem to have played sports. None of them seems to know what it is like to try your hardest, play your very best, and still fall short. None of them seems to have known the security of winning the respect and approval of an opponent. Thus, they are always attempting to fill the hole of insecurity in their souls through various means that can never do so.

They also tend to be vehemently irreligious, which again tends to go back to pride.

So, if you have a broken mind, if you feel anxious and insecure, if you feel like an imposter, I have two pieces of advice.

1. Humble yourself before God.
2. Give Man the opportunity to humble you.

I'm not self-confident because I'm smart, or because I'm athletic, or because pretty girls like me, I'm self-confident because I have allowed myself to be tested, repeatedly, and I have passed the tests. The test is not winning. The test is getting up after you are knocked down, being a good sport when you are beaten, meeting rejection with grace, meeting failure with good humor, and accepting your assigned place in the social hierarchy without demur or complaint.

You can't change the past or the present. All you can change is how you approach the vicissitudes of the future.

Winning feels great. I like to win as anyone else. I've won everything from grade school competitions to NCAA Division One conference championships. But even better than winning, in terms of developing self-respect, is having the rival who has beaten you despite your best efforts treat you with respect, as an equal, and above all, as a worthy opponent.

And I'm not proud of my intelligence because I know what it is worth in comparison to the glory of the Creator and the magnificence of His Creation, which is precisely nothing. It means nothing more than the color of a spot on a dog's coat or the pattern on a snake's skin.

Wil Wheaton, on the other hand, has a different solution:
Here’s what I need you guys to do. I need this entire room of people to make a pact. It’s just us, so what happens here in beautiful downtown San Diego, stays in beautiful downtown San Diego. So here it goes. You are the superheroes we need. But the world doesn’t know it yet. But they will. And something cataclysmic will occur, and the world will cry out, “who will save us?” And I need you to be ready to burst out of the crowd, rip open your shirt to expose your true identity and say proudly, “I’m ready! I am the SUPERHERO YOU NEED!”
Fantastic. Now they're not just Secret Kings, they're Secret fucking Superheroes and only these very special snowflakes can save the world.

No wonder they feel like imposters. They never stop posturing.

Labels: ,

221 Comments:

1 – 200 of 221 Newer› Newest»
Anonymous Real Human Being July 14, 2016 11:33 AM  

I think he meant to say "my wife's two awesome kids."

Anonymous Faceless July 14, 2016 11:39 AM  

Maybe he should go with his gut on the whole imposter thing and stay silent and invisible when he has that feeling. It appears to be a recently-invented malady like affluenza and sex addiction.

Blogger Ben Cohen July 14, 2016 11:39 AM  

Has Wil done anything since star trek?

Anonymous Faceless July 14, 2016 11:41 AM  

Couldn't he just focus on resurrecting the Amiga Toaster? The world doesn't need his opinion, but smooth chyrons are a different story.

Blogger Cataline Sergius July 14, 2016 11:42 AM  

The way it works is this part of my brain that’s supposed to be on my side but is really a dick about everything goes, “You know, you suck at everything and you don’t deserve to be here and nobody likes you because you suck. Boy do you suck. You are the suckiest bunch of sucks that ever sucked.”

This voice is relentless, even though I’m supposed to be successful enough to ignore it and...


Ha!Ha!Ha! (*gasp...wheez...gasp*) Ha!Ha!Ha!

No fat Wesley! No! You should listen to that voice. It knows what it's talking about.

Blogger James Dixon July 14, 2016 11:42 AM  

> One thing I've noticed about all these people with broken minds is that none of them ever seem to have played sports. None of them seems to know what it is like to try your hardest, play your very best, and still fall short.

That's not just sports. That's any competitive activity. Something as simple as a competitive chess club is apparently beyond them.

Blogger Thomas Davidsmeier July 14, 2016 11:43 AM  

I admit that I have trouble believing that pretty girls (besides his wife) like Vox. I mean, maybe before he opens his mouth and the voice of a twelve year old comes out, sure, maybe they like him. But, how does he keep up the attraction when it sounds like he sucked on helium balloons until permanently damaging his vocal chords?

Then again, I have to admit that Game, whether natural or practiced, is more powerful than I'd ever imagined.

I know of a wheelchair bound dude who is an absolute chick magnet and more successful than all his peers with the weaker sex.

Blogger Sevron July 14, 2016 11:45 AM  

I used to see a shrink. It was a difficult time in my life, and I found it quite helpful. One thing she used to bang on about was that I should try to be more positive, because I was tall, good looking (amazing what compliments you get when you're paying somebody by the hour to listen to you), and very smart. I would argue that being smart is a genetic mistake, as it didn't confer a reproductive advantage and was very rare. Since I was also very gamma, I would also at times argue that I should be the Revealed King (as opposed to Secret) because I was so smurt. She hit me with this one time, and it was another big part of what turned my life around:

"You shouldn't be any more proud of being smart than you are of being tall. It was just something you were born with."

A lot of things clicked for me then, and like Vox suggests, it actually brought me closer to God. I will forever be grateful to her.

Blogger James Dixon July 14, 2016 11:46 AM  

> But, how does he keep up the attraction when it sounds like he sucked on helium balloons until permanently damaging his vocal chords?

You'd have to ask Mike Tyson about that.

OpenID paworldandtimes July 14, 2016 11:48 AM  

how terrifying it is that we’re basically these tiny little things on a giant hunk of rock speeding through space at like 30 kilometers per second and what the hell is space, anyway?

Flashbacking to that Seinfeld episode in which Jerry became sincere and expressed his feelings without any filters. In that condition he used almost the exact same words when proposing to Elaine.

PA

Blogger Thomas Davidsmeier July 14, 2016 11:48 AM  

@6

I've often wondered how I've avoided the fate of becoming a full on Gamma. I probably was at some points early in my life and it seems by all rights that I should have been.

But, I played football and lifted. I played competitive chess and lost frequently. It didn't help that much, but perhaps it was just enough to keep me from becoming one.

Then again, maybe I am one and just can't admit it. Yuck. Is there a test you can take or something to tell? Are there treatment options?

Anonymous John in Highland Park July 14, 2016 11:49 AM  

1. Humble yourself before God.
2. Give Man the opportunity to humble you.

and I would suggest one more:
3. Read and heed Gorilla Mindset by Mike Cernovich

Blogger Thomas Davidsmeier July 14, 2016 11:50 AM  

@9

I thought Mike got in trouble for needing to force the issue...

Anonymous patrick kelly July 14, 2016 11:50 AM  

"You'd have to ask Mike Tyson about that."

I doubt he would be as gracious in response as Vox.

But yeah, go do that, tell us how it works out for you.

Anonymous Icicle July 14, 2016 11:51 AM  

I never did get this. Most of these geeks play video games. Did you beat the game on the first try? No? You died? That means you failed.

Anonymous patrick kelly July 14, 2016 11:53 AM  

" Is there a test you can take or something to tell?"

Hang out at post the most gamma, un-filtered thoughts you can express and then embrace the love you receive.

Blogger YIH July 14, 2016 11:53 AM  

Ben Cohen wrote:Has Wil done anything since star trek?
Some writing, cons, and, of course, as always, being cringe-worthy.

Anonymous BGKB July 14, 2016 11:54 AM  

Never trust a man who has never been punched in the face. You would think Will would auction off a punch to his face for a charity.

“You know, you suck at everything and you don’t deserve to be here and nobody likes you because you suck. Boy do you suck.

A tip for Wesley, its not hearing voices when you can see peoples lips mouthing the words.

It’s just us, so what happens here in beautiful downtown San Diego, stays in beautiful downtown San Diego

I hope they used protection.


OT:Everyone in the Dallas shooters unit has gag orders to prevent them from talking about him, most likely moslem rapist http://www.military.com/daily-news/2016/07/14/still-no-explanation-dallas-gunman-honorable-discharge.html

Blogger Eric Mueller July 14, 2016 11:56 AM  

I concur with the recommendation for Wheaton to read Gorilla Mindset. That's what I thought while stabbing my brain with the excerpt from his speech. It was painful. Cernovich says to take control of that voice and make it work for you. Wheaton says you have no choice but to ride wherever it goes.

As for the secret superheros; can anybody trust any of them, including Wheaton, to keep that silly pact?

Anonymous FP July 14, 2016 11:58 AM  

"The test is getting up after you are knocked down,"

I had a baseball coach one year who's favorite line was "Get back up on your horse!" when you screwed up, said in his stereotypical New York Italian accent. It annoyed me as a kid but it stuck all these years later.

Blogger szopen July 14, 2016 12:00 PM  

You cannot make someone believe (without tortures and brainwashing). Either you believe, or you don't.

OpenID paworldandtimes July 14, 2016 12:00 PM  

A gamma test you can take: if men appear irritated by you and women don't appreciate you, you may be a gamma. Friends and family don't count.

PA

Blogger Orville July 14, 2016 12:01 PM  

A shameless plug, but this is exactly what my new book is on. Most men have been broken by the feminist cancer and the antidote, as Vox says, is testing yourself by being a builder, a fixer, an explorer and leader. If as a man you are not doing those things on a least some level, then you wind up like poor sackless Wil whose own mind beats him up and steals his lunch.

Best Tools For Men

Blogger James Dixon July 14, 2016 12:03 PM  

> But yeah, go do that, tell us how it works out for you.

I wasn't the one with the question. And that was sort of the point.

Anonymous FriarBob July 14, 2016 12:04 PM  

Did he even do anything remotely worthwhile back then?

I liked the character (and show) back before I knew what an SJW was. The actor is a moron.

Blogger VD July 14, 2016 12:06 PM  

I mean, maybe before he opens his mouth and the voice of a twelve year old comes out, sure, maybe they like him. But, how does he keep up the attraction when it sounds like he sucked on helium balloons until permanently damaging his vocal chords?

If you consider the fact that a) women love rock and pop singers, and, b) most rock and pop singers have unusually high voices, perhaps you'll be able to understand that you are working off a false assumption.

Then again, maybe I am one and just can't admit it.

Here is a hint: look at what you just said about Mike Tyson and me, two men who are known to attract very pretty women.

What drove you to do that? Why do you want to believe that women are not attracted to other men? If you can answer those two questions, you might have your answer.

Blogger Human Animal July 14, 2016 12:11 PM  

But it's not how many words you know. It's how you use them.

Do people enjoy reading Scalzi's fiction?

Blogger Ron Winkleheimer July 14, 2016 12:14 PM  

But if simply being born smarter than other people doesn't automatically confer virtue upon you, then you might have to do something other than conform to the attitudes and beliefs of your social milieu in order to be virtuous.

And really, that would be entirely to tiresome.

So, there.

Blogger Sean Anderson July 14, 2016 12:16 PM  

I was at his speech, and yes, he confirmed that his entry to geekhood, one of the defining moments of his life, was precipitated by getting his ass kicked at dodgeball. While going to wash gravel out of his hands, he met an asthmatic(lucky) kid who didn't have to play. They bonded over D&D. He never played dodgeball again.

Yes, Mensa is incredibly SJW. It is probably a lost cause, but there are some of us who refuse to abide. We are few, but we are right.

Blogger Leo Little Book July 14, 2016 12:17 PM  

Will Wheaton, once winsome, wearisomely whines.

Blogger szopen July 14, 2016 12:17 PM  

@22 Does that mean gammas don't get friendzoned, because they don't even get to the friendzone?

Anonymous FriarBob July 14, 2016 12:17 PM  

I agree on the sports stuff. Unfortunately I know lots of folks who just play to take up space on a court. Any suggestions on good rhetoric for helping folks to see that winning or losing at sports truly doesn't matter, but that failing to try your best is pathetic?

Blogger Krul July 14, 2016 12:18 PM  

Obligatory

Anonymous A Paradigm Is More Than Twenty Cents July 14, 2016 12:19 PM  

You are the superheroes we need. But the world doesn’t know it yet.

Wait, isn’t that supposed to be “We are the superheroes we’ve been waiting for”?

Blogger Orville July 14, 2016 12:20 PM  

Well, there you go. Dodgeball is the gateway to manhood, and poor Wil was too fat and slow to fit through the gate.

I lived for dodgeball. We actually called in murderball in high school. But not today. Today teenage boys don't have a healthy outlet for violent fun.

Blogger rumpole5 July 14, 2016 12:21 PM  

"accepting your assigned place in the social hierarchy without demur or complaint."

Kudos for this valuable insight! It truly is a key factor in improving one's chances at happiness.

Anonymous BrerFox July 14, 2016 12:21 PM  

I didn't expect Scalzi to screech disqualify at an online quiz.

Imposter syndrome is a common diagnosis within my field (engineering). I think this has come about for one main reason. That is to address the inability of many to deal with being midwits. I agree with many posters above, the best solution is getting beaten and going right back at it.

Regarding videogames, I think that's the line between, dare I say, Gamers and Geeks. Gamers engage against each other and games with difficult design. Geeks watch TV and might play Candy Crush and Depression Quest. Still I think nothing I've done in a video game matches my second night of Judo. Having a man 2/3 your size throw you to your back hard enough to knock the wind out of you is humbling. Getting back up and finally managing to get him down with the one throw you've been taught keeps you going back.

Blogger J Van Stry July 14, 2016 12:21 PM  

The most important thing of sports in school is teaching kids how to deal with losing without letting it destroy you.

It's one of those things you see in a lot of old Japanese stories, where the teacher sets his prize student up for utter failure, so they can learn how to deal with it and rise above it.

It's an important life lesson, which many young men today never learn, and end up killing themselves when they finally do fail at something as a young adult.

And the fact that many on the left wish to do away with sports in school, makes me wonder just what their motivation really is. Plus their whole 'everybody gets a trophy'. It's like they want to destroy these kids. Then again, the left is enamored with pedophilia so I guess the destruction of children really is a cornerstone of theirs.

Anonymous ZhukovG July 14, 2016 12:22 PM  

I got through about two paragraphs of Will Wheaton's 'noisome vowel movement' before deciding there were better ways to waste my time.

I wonder though; can a person's place in the hierarchy change, or can they only learn to imitate another type?

OpenID paworldandtimes July 14, 2016 12:23 PM  

Does that mean gammas don't get friendzoned, because they don't even get to the friendzone?

Deltas get friendzoned and girls feel bad when called out on it (they sort of mean it when they say "I know that you deserve soneone who can give you more."). Gammas get friendzoned and girls get angry when called out on it ("what a creep!")

PA

Blogger Were-Puppy July 14, 2016 12:23 PM  

@9 James Dixon
You'd have to ask Mike Tyson about that.
---

Brock Lesnar also doesn't have the giant voice you'd expect

Anonymous Chico and the Man July 14, 2016 12:23 PM  

Imposter syndrome, also known as having a demon whispering in your head. But of course demons don't exist, ergo...

When exorcising demons I know people who, before commanding it to leave, will make the demon repeat all the lies it's been telling the person. Those lies often sound remarkably like the voice in Wheaton's head.

OpenID frankluke July 14, 2016 12:26 PM  

@23 Most men have been broken by the feminist cancer and the antidote, as Vox says, is testing yourself by being a builder, a fixer, an explorer and leader.

I can attest. About a year ago, I started a Royal Rangers outpost at our church. The challenge of putting it together (even with the organization sending startup packages and books) helped me. The leadership meetings with other men in the state are wonderful. They want new outposts to succeed because this world needs men. And seeing my sons and the other boys learning and doing is great.

Regarding the feminist cancer, a seminary buddy of mine is an Air Force chaplain. When we were talking a few months ago, he said, "I checked my logs the other day. In my military career, I've counseled more than 5,300 men, women, and couples. From that, I tell you this, Frank Luke, feminism is poison!"

Blogger Cogitans Iuvenis July 14, 2016 12:28 PM  

None of them seems to have known the security of winning the respect and approval of an opponent

I think you hit the nail on the head. There was a person on my college team that I absolutely despised my first two years...and the feeling was returned. He's now one of my best friends, we were groomsmen for each other and I am the godfather to his daughter. The only reason that happened is that over the course of college our dislike grew into begrudging respect to friendship solely due to the fact that we both witnessed how hard and diligently we worked when it came to training.

Blogger Shimshon July 14, 2016 12:29 PM  

@3 "Has Wil done anything since star trek?"

He plays an asshole version of himself on Big Bang Theory. I thought he was funny the first couple of times he appeared. But it turns out he really is an asshole in real life.

Anonymous #8601 Jean Valjean July 14, 2016 12:29 PM  

Gorilla Mindset would indeed be helpful but Will Wheaton should really read the Bible. VD is absolutely right that Will's problems are spiritual in nature. Humbling himself before God should be step number one.

Anonymous Jack Amok July 14, 2016 12:29 PM  

No fat Wesley! No! You should listen to that voice. It knows what it's talking about.

An interesting variation of Dunning-Krueger. Too dumb to realize he's smart enough to know when he's wrong.

Blogger lowercaseb July 14, 2016 12:30 PM  

Notice that in most sports, you can't flip the table?

Blogger Robert Divinity July 14, 2016 12:30 PM  

He feels like an imposter because he is an imposter.

Leftism exists to make the mediocre feel important and exercise power they otherwise could not attain. The drones never achieve this level of self-awareness while their masters are haunted by it. Wheaton is afraid. A normal man would feel guilt.

Blogger John Williams July 14, 2016 12:30 PM  

Maybe he should go with his gut on the whole imposter thing and stay silent and invisible when he has that feeling.
Instead, he doubles down. No surprise there.

Blogger Were-Puppy July 14, 2016 12:33 PM  

Maybe the hidden voice in his head is actually him.
And he's been hijacked.

Blogger Cataline Sergius July 14, 2016 12:33 PM  

The source of Wheaton's Gammahood is this.

He was a child actor and everyone in Hollywood loathes child actors. They just do.

The reason is simple, none of them can act but they all think they are brilliant. Each one of the little turds acts like they are the new Brando.

They get told by everyone during their childhood that they are brilliant and talented performers. And then they turn 18 and that rug gets jerked out from under them.

Unsurprisingly it makes them massively insecure. Classic example Leo DiCaprio. He is easily the biggest Oscar hound in Hollywood. Despite having a successful career he was pantingly desperate for the affirmation of an Oscar. It was salt in his wounds for years.

And this is despite the fact that if you got recognized for a truly legendary performance it was basically an accident. You are more likely to get an Oscar if everyone in the academy is feeling sorry for you for some reason.

But the academy types finally shrugged and gave Leo a Participation Oscar last year but I guarantee you he will continue chasing statues because he is that fundamentally insecure. Nothing will cure that.

And that is somebody who has accomplished something. Imagine what that insecurity must be like if you played the most despised character in the entire 50 year history of Star Trek.

Anonymous andon July 14, 2016 12:34 PM  

just listen to the voices and see where they take you

Blogger Orville July 14, 2016 12:34 PM  

Wil is iron deficient. He needs to lift some iron, and find an iron friend to sharpen up his soft round curves. "Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend".

Best Tools For Men

Anonymous andon July 14, 2016 12:37 PM  

51. Blogger Were-Puppy July 14, 2016 12:33 PM
Maybe the hidden voice in his head is actually him.
And he's been hijacked.


that was my guess too - its his authentic self

Blogger Earl July 14, 2016 12:38 PM  

"1. Humble yourself before God.
2. Give Man the opportunity to humble you."

Regarding 2,it is even more basic:just get some freaking exercise! It's doesn't even have to be competitive to wire your mind and balance your psychemail and put you to sleep on time.

Be still and know that God wants you to get some freaking exercise.

Anonymous Jill July 14, 2016 12:40 PM  

His speech bothers me because he doesn't sound or act any more intelligent than average, and yet, here he is, pretending that he's set apart and different from others because he's so damn intelligent. He calls us average people "muggles" for God's sake. What an ass. It's cringe-worthy.

Re the vocab test. I took it. It tested me as having a 30,500 word vocabulary, which is supposedly a very high score. But the English language has over a million words. How can that be a high score?


Blogger Robert Divinity July 14, 2016 12:42 PM  

Translation: he scored below the top one percent and is ashamed to admit it.

It is probable Scalzi hasn't even taken the tests. Subpar intellects tend to avoid measurements, even those they can plausibly deny. The assumption is generous that Scalzi took the tests, fared poorly, and now dismisses them. He likely has enough insecurity to avoid them and arrogance to then denounce them.

Blogger szopen July 14, 2016 12:43 PM  

@22
A lot of men is irritated by me, mostly because they are stupid and I often cannot stop myself for telling them exactly that. Does that count? OTOH, some of men who were irritated because I told them they were wrong, later became my... well, not friends, but something similar.

@40
Hmm. By this criterion I am/was delta after all. Strange.

@39
can a person's place in the hierarchy change, or can they only learn to imitate another type?
Supposedly the whole game concept is based on an idea that you can become another type just by learning to imitate that type. Not that I ever believed that. I think that if you really want to change, you must change and not just learn to pretend you have changed - otherwise, you will always fall back to your "default mode".

Blogger clk July 14, 2016 12:44 PM  

" Moreover, I know many highly intelligent people who don't suffer from any of those things, but are very happy and well-adjusted individuals."

The funny thing about normal is how uncommon it is... I would not diagnose VD with depression or low self esteem -- I would lean more toward some narcissistic/megalomania spectrum diagnosis...the only thing that saves him (as it does many of us) is a faith in God -- God and faith is a excellent moderating force.

There are people out there in science/engineering/math/technology fields that are high IQ and hardly any of them are "normal" .. they are often one dimensional ... you have to reach a certain degree of intelligence to be useful, but often its the breadth that makes the man, not the depth.

Anonymous GreyS July 14, 2016 12:44 PM  

Well said all the way through, Vox. Really one of your best in a while. Wheaton's imposter anxiety is real because he is an imposter. He knows darn well he wouldn't stand out if he hadn't been on Star Trek and the fact that the role was back when he was a kid makes it much worse because he knows that being a kid on a tv show is not about what he accomplished personally to get there, but rather because of chance, luck, the efforts of others. He knows no one would pay him any mind if it wasn't for that role and that it was borne more out of luck than anything else. Even a one-book wonder or a singer with one long-ago hit song has more to hang their self-worth hat on.

1. Humble yourself before God.
2. Give Man the opportunity to humble you.


Yes yes yes! Those two take away all this Secret King self-induced inhibition. It's always always about Pride.

Blogger szopen July 14, 2016 12:46 PM  

@57 Jill
According to what I read, average "cultured" person has "active" vocabulary of about 20-30k words in his native lingo, and 50k-100k in his passive vocabulary (but then, that would be somehow contradicted by claims that someone with 30k words in vocabulary is in top percent or 0.01% or whatever).

English may have million words, but it's very unlikely there is a single person on earth which knows them all.

Anonymous Crude July 14, 2016 12:46 PM  

And I need you to be ready to burst out of the crowd, rip open your shirt to expose your true identity and say proudly, “I’m ready! I am the SUPERHERO YOU NEED!”

What a fruit.

Anonymous JAG July 14, 2016 12:47 PM  

Has Wil done anything since star trek?

Few SJWs disgust me more than Wheaton does. Not even Sean Penn bugs me as much as Wesley Crusher. As much of a shitlib as he is at least Penn doesn't grovel like I've seen Wheaton do in fits of intense virtue signaling.

Anonymous Spartacus xxxxx July 14, 2016 12:49 PM  

Orville wrote:Dodgeball is the gateway to manhood, and poor Wil was too fat and slow to fit through the gate.

I lived for dodgeball. We actually called in murderball in high school.


I loved dodgeball too! Come to think of it, I can also distinctly recall picking the gravel out of the bloodied palms of my hands. I'd forgotten that part, thanks Wil, for the reminder!

Vox, your above is a beautifully written and inspirational response to the Wil Wheaton cringfest. Maybe it can even help him. Thank you for posting this.

Anonymous Elijah Rhodes July 14, 2016 12:50 PM  

I think gammas should be forced to train Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Getting regularly choked the fuck out and having your ego smashed is profoundly good therapy.

Anonymous Toastrider July 14, 2016 12:51 PM  

I always felt kind of bad for Wil Wheaton, at least at first.

Keep in mind: he was what, fifteen? Sixteen? When TNG hit the airwaves. He wasn't writing his own script. Hell, he was just happy to be on the same stage as Patrick fucking Stewart. A lot -- a whole lot -- of the abuse he got hit with regarding Wesley should've been directed at the scriptwriters. The adult actors might've had the chops to look at their lines, and say 'oh hell no', but some fifteen year old whose role was originally a -female- character? Pull the other one, it's got bells on it.

But over the years, Wil has done himself no favors. His latest moment of open mouth insert foot came in the wake of the Berrien County Courthouse shootings, where a criminal grabbed a deputy's handgun and opened fire. Wil's comment was to blame the NRA.

Really, Wil. I try to like you, man. I really do. But it's hard when you act like a smoking pile of dog shit.

Blogger praetorian July 14, 2016 12:56 PM  

How does it feel, McScalzi, to know you will never be a part of the glorious SHAKESPEAREAN WORD-ORIGINATING master race?

Blogger Cail Corishev July 14, 2016 12:56 PM  

He never played dodgeball again.

So, getting humiliated before you felt like you even had a chance to do your best (which would have been awesome!) and giving up: not helpful.

But going back and trying again, recognizing your improvement through practice, gaining the respect of your opponents: very helpful.

Anonymous Jay Will July 14, 2016 12:57 PM  

Pride does seem huge, just getting beat brings turmoil into me. Literally had suicidal thoughts a month or so ago when I was playing terribly. Its like your whole insideyourheadness is coming crashing down and your gut turns and turns. The answer appears to relentlessly subject yourself to it until the secret king pops. The problem is if you don't really understand yourself and somebody around you doesn't either you may just end up banging your head against a wall. For example I went away to a pool tournament, I didnt play too well but more importantly I was out of my comfort zone and socially froze. Rabbit in headlights sort of thing. By not being the big man and getting that buzz from it my core self is laid bare and there's nothing there. No interest in other people. Or fearful to open mouth for what to say, just a mess.

That I think only helps when you understand during the process what is going on and why you are feeling that way, I just don't get it enough to know whats wrong. Just so selfish for so long that I cant give to people to receive naturally and when the crutches of being better than other people at something are not there I'm lost.

Can't even use peoples names without cringing. Everyone is "mate".

What little I do know of myself, is its not my parents, The Jews, feminists or whatever thats the problem its just me. The way I live my life and what I value or don't value. Bonding with people feels like torture. Either I have to oneupmanship them or I have to defer into "niceness".

Blogger Human Animal July 14, 2016 12:57 PM  

30325. Hmm.

Scalzi writes for a living. Does he also read for a living, or does he stick to audiobooks?

Blogger Badmojo July 14, 2016 12:57 PM  

Imposter Syndrome is just another iteration on big fish/little pond.

You could be among the smartest person in high school with little effort.

When you reshuffle into a new deck (aka college) and entered a serious program, it took a lot more effort to be among the smartest.

When you reshuffle into a yet another new deck (aka your profession) and tried something "hard" by normal standards, it takes even more effort to be among the smartest.


People who were at the top in the first group are in the bottom half of the third group and trying to make up excuses.

Put up, shut up, or get out of our way.

Blogger chris July 14, 2016 12:57 PM  

"So anxiety is what makes the geek? No wonder I've never fit in with their weird little culture. What Wheaton is describing has nothing to do with being smart; I'm considerably smarter than him and I don't suffer from anxiety or Imposter Syndrome, much less depression. Moreover, I know many highly intelligent people who don't suffer from any of those things, but are very happy and well-adjusted individuals."

Depression as a function of upper body strength.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/pop-psych/201607/why-women-are-more-depressed-men

Blogger Sheila4g July 14, 2016 12:58 PM  

While the alpha/beta/gamma categories don't translate precisely to women, there's obviously still a pecking order; but regardless of sex, there's a common thread of being amazingly solipsistic. Of course every teen, at times, is insecure and feels like a secret king, or unappreciated, or is convinced he's along in feeling existential angst. That's part of being a teen. Growing up, though, means growing past that. Realizing that you are not so special and unique among all who have ever lived, and that better men than you have had the same thoughts or achieved the same or more and done better with less. Coming to Christ, too, is vital - accepting you're not the center of the universe and you are flawed, yet you are forgiven and loved yet must continue to strive to overcome your worst nature.

If someone is a midwit or better, it's all the more important that they fail at something to someone better. That's one reason we skipped our son a few grades - in a somewhat unsuccessful attempt to require him to have to work at something for success, to be truly challenged to his utmost. He was never much for team sports, although not genuinely unathletic (being 2 years younger/smaller than his academic peers complicated factors). Making it through basic training at 17 and then pathfinder school at 18 was a big part of his challenge that helped him mature. For everyone, though, it's a process. If you don't mature and grow and change and increasingly accept yourself and your place in the world, you remain a perpetual adolescent - i.e. a SJW.

Blogger Cail Corishev July 14, 2016 12:58 PM  

I always felt kind of bad for Wil Wheaton, at least at first.

Same here. He took a real beating as Wesley, which had to be hard for a kid to deal with, and it seemed at one point like he had dealt with it and become a normal adult. Apparently not.

Anonymous GreyS July 14, 2016 12:59 PM  

And Scalzi-- ha that stinking guy. As I said the other day, Scalzi should just drop all the pretense that he doesn't read VD's every word of blog and tweet. His popularity has dropped so much while VD's has grown substantially. But VD's notoriousness has grown substantially as well (see Gameliel's VD paranoia) and there are lots of people who are almost obsessed with Vox as Enemy. Scalzi could revive his flagging popularity by making himself the spokesman of an Anti-Vox movement. Instead of making vague, catty references he should bash VD every day all day so the SJWs will see him as a leader against VD and make him popular again. They would buy Scalzi's books just because he is against VD. He's barely writing now anyway and he needs all the oomph he can get.

Ha- Just a couple years ago Scalzi was crowing about his imagined superiority over Vox in various areas. Now his only chance to pull himself out of PZ-like quicksand is to grab VD's coattails and hang on for dear life!

Blogger praetorian July 14, 2016 1:01 PM  

OT, bill lind is on Manifest Destiny, talking Dallas:

https://radio.therightstuff.biz/2016/07/14/manifest-destiny-william-s-lind-interview/

mfw

Anonymous Jay Will July 14, 2016 1:03 PM  

With regards to humility and pride. I've been told that helping people less fortunate than yourself is good for this. I completely disagree. I will just feel superior to them, my feeling good won't come from helping them it will be that I feel safe knowing that they are more helpless than me. I I was around someone homeless or a druggie and I sensed they were below me objectively the secret king would start to grow and bulge, feeling better than him. I would then fight with that sensation hoping nobody would notice the body language signals.

Blogger Eric Mueller July 14, 2016 1:06 PM  

Several years ago, I read Wheaton's book "Just A Geek". Basically, the theme of the book was "I wasn't wrong for quitting Star Trek". He's probably still trying to convince himself of it.

Blogger VD July 14, 2016 1:06 PM  

No interest in other people.

It's interesting to see how solipsistic gammas are. Another indication of female brain in a male body.

Blogger SirHamster July 14, 2016 1:07 PM  

Fantastic. Now they're not just Secret Kings, they're Secret fucking Superheroes and only these very special snowflakes can save the world.

I find it fascinating how much of what Whil Wheaton says deserves, "Shut Up Wesley".

Blogger VD July 14, 2016 1:10 PM  

Scalzi should just drop all the pretense that he doesn't read VD's every word of blog and tweet.

He should, but he won't. Sociosexuality is a bitch.

I would not diagnose VD with depression or low self esteem -- I would lean more toward some narcissistic/megalomania spectrum diagnosis.

I'm narcissistic, but my empathy tends to counterbalance that. I'm not even remotely megalomaniac, more the opposite, actually. I'm much more likely to run from leadership than seek it out.

Anonymous kfg July 14, 2016 1:17 PM  

"Never trust a man who has never been punched in the face."

Watch the movie Heat. No, not that one. The first one with Burt Reynolds and Peter MacNicol.

Blogger pyrrhus July 14, 2016 1:19 PM  

I had a debate with an amiable young teacher the other day who, will subscribing to most of SJW-dumb, was at least a strong believer in devolving Federal power to the States. Yay! But he told me that when his generation took over, there would be no guns....

OpenID gnossoss July 14, 2016 1:19 PM  

It's pretty clear that a big part of the problem is the struggle to keep up an outsized view of oneself.

If you're just a person, like all the other people, smarter than some and dumber than others, good at some things and bad at some things, then you don't need to worry about being an impostor. What would you be posing as? A human?

But if you're trying to wear the Secret Crown, well, every failure or mistake whispers (or shouts and is muffled) "Would a Secret King really have trouble with this?" And if you fight that instead of accepting it, it's going to make you miserable, because that voice is right. Take off the crown and you realize that you're not special, and you don't have to pretend to be.

Blogger Thomas Davidsmeier July 14, 2016 1:20 PM  

@82

Speaking of leadership, Vox do you (or any other readers) have any good books to read about it?

I think it is a responsibility that I have been shirking in a lot of ways in a lot of my life and I want to improve on it.

By the way, I was only trying to give you crap, not actually genuinely doubt that women like you or Mike Tyson.

My concerns about me being a Gamma of some kind (or at least in too many situations) are genuine.

Anonymous #8601 Jean Valjean July 14, 2016 1:21 PM  

@83 Relax. As long as the VP pick doesn't hurt Trump's chances, and it doesn't look like Pence will, it's all good.

Blogger Human Animal July 14, 2016 1:22 PM  

But it's not how many words you know. It's how you use them.

Do people enjoy reading Scalzi's fiction?

Anonymous DarthWheatley #2415 July 14, 2016 1:22 PM  

...his wife's children
Dang... gonna need some cream for that burn.

We've discovered that WW actually *is* a clueless teenager who's awkward around everybody. He wasn't acting as Wesley. That's actually who he is.

Slightly OT: Is Greg Rucka on the SJW list yet? If not, he will be soon:
http://www.bleedingcool.com/2016/07/14/frank-cho-walks-off-wonder-woman-after-sixth-cover

Blogger Samuel Nock July 14, 2016 1:22 PM  

"Translation: he scored below the top one percent and is ashamed to admit it."

I kek'ed

OpenID gnossoss July 14, 2016 1:22 PM  

He's trying to tell these people "you're better than normal people because you're geeks." It's like the finale of Daredevil season 2, where the ugly assistant talks about how people who live in New York are heroes just because they live there.

Being socially awkward and anxious all the time doesn't make you better, it makes you observably worse. You don't have to be a weirdo to like sci-fi, comics, etc. I hate people that encourage others to wallow in that filth rather than encourage them to leave it. It was hard for me, but it was an incredible improvement in my life.

I still like all the same nerdy stuff I liked before, but now I have proper hygiene, I look better, and people like and respect me more. You have nothing to lose but your ugly clothes, your smell, and your fake Secret Crown!

Blogger Zaklog the Great July 14, 2016 1:23 PM  

Smart men are useful for many things, and it's nice to have them around, but what we lack, and what would save us, is not smart men, but good men, and leftist twerps like Wheaton have no clue how to produce those. (Note: Of course no, the two are not mutually exclusive nor even opposed. But we have quite a few smart men running things, not so many good ones.)

Anonymous Napoleon 12pdr July 14, 2016 1:24 PM  

If you want to be a superhero, don't bother ripping open your shirt. Just do the heroic feats.

Blogger pyrrhus July 14, 2016 1:25 PM  

@83 Mike Tyson--"everyone has a plan 'til they get punched in the mouth."

Anonymous Elijah Rhodes July 14, 2016 1:30 PM  

"Never trust a man who has never been punched in the face."

Consistently, the most humble guys I know are high level martial artists. The process itself destroys any delusions of grandeur. When you train in a reality-based martial art (BJJ, Muay Thai, Wrestling, Judo) it is impossible to be a secret king. There's no hiding behind any facade. No self-aggrandizement is possible. You are only as good as you are. Period. Every time you train you have to earn your place in the pecking order. On day one you learn that you utterly suck, and you then spend the rest of your career attempting to de-suck one millimeter at a time.

I spent years training in a non-reality martial art (no sparring) and I walked around thinking I was a total badass. I won every encounter in my mind. In contrast, after over a decade of BJJ and Judo I have absolutely no conceit (false or otherwise) regarding my own capability, even though objectively I'm more skilled in unarmed combat than probably well over 95% the world's population.

Blogger Bard July 14, 2016 1:33 PM  

Maybe that leech did in fact take his tiny balls. What an insecure little bitch. Man, everyone struggles, but you don't post your worst traits online for anyone to read. You are supposed to be ashamed and that shame should be harnessed into action.

Blogger Alexander July 14, 2016 1:33 PM  

It's really gonna suck when the crisis happens, the secret superhero is ready to go and save the day and show all the women that they were dumb for not waiting...

... only to find that they can't rip the shirt.

Blogger Cail Corishev July 14, 2016 1:34 PM  

the most despised character in the entire 50 year history of Star Trek.

Neelix says hi.

And I need you to be ready to burst out of the crowd, rip open your shirt to expose your true identity and say proudly, “I’m ready! I am the SUPERHERO YOU NEED!”

There's the crux of it: if you think that under your shirt you're a superhero, or an ordinary hero, or simply a good man with something to contribute, then why would you be waiting for a bat-signal? Why not go ahead and shed the shirt and get on with it?

Because the people he's talking to (including himself) don't think they already have that inside themselves; they're trying to talk themselves into believing it and hoping it'll show up someday.

Blogger Human Animal July 14, 2016 1:34 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Bard July 14, 2016 1:35 PM  

No wee-balled-Will, we don't feel like closet heroes. You may be confusing your closets.

OpenID basementhomebrewer July 14, 2016 1:35 PM  

pyrrhus wrote:I had a debate with an amiable young teacher the other day who, will subscribing to most of SJW-dumb, was at least a strong believer in devolving Federal power to the States. Yay! But he told me that when his generation took over, there would be no guns....

He is wrong on that one. There are still just as many young people involved in shooting/gun ownership as ever. It's just we have learned to not talk about them at work because it is hazardous to our careers.

Blogger Alexander July 14, 2016 1:36 PM  

No interest in other people.

It's interesting to see how solipsistic gammas are. Another indication of female brain in a male body.

See, they say Vox is mean and even he calls himself a cruelty artist.

But he's really going above and beyond here giving Scalzi the benefit of the doubt.

Blogger Doom July 14, 2016 1:36 PM  

Can't save their own butts... even from themselves, now they are going to save the world? Man, even the people I am pretty sure are superhuman can't save the world. None of them can even save themselves, or their own, none that I know, not on their own. And they know it. A lot of them might well die trying, but... that's the difference. Will any of these special snowflakes even risk being hurt?

The answer to that, in their gated communities, is obvious. I still think the police should stop defending the very people who are calling them murderers for doing their job. Let them choose, but from the inside, not way out of the fray. I saw the police pull out of an women's ball game, pull out of the rest, and areas that don't support the civil. Let's see about these snowflake supermen.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan July 14, 2016 1:38 PM  

23500 here, top 5%, about right, could care less what anyone thought of it.

The Saving Gamma series is spot on by offering it to these asstwits the moral level of conflict is taken and held against their little bitchy shitfits.

Blogger Bard July 14, 2016 1:40 PM  

Snowflake Superman, now there is a cartoon someone should draw. Will struggling to tear open his shirt while the world around him burns.

Blogger Bard July 14, 2016 1:41 PM  

Snowflake Superman, now there is a cartoon someone should draw. Will struggling to tear open his shirt while the world around him burns.

Blogger Bard July 14, 2016 1:41 PM  

Maybe that leech did in fact take his tiny balls. What an insecure little bitch. Man, everyone struggles, but you don't post your worst traits online for anyone to read. You are supposed to be ashamed and that shame should be harnessed into action.

OpenID gnossoss July 14, 2016 1:41 PM  

@93

But if I don't make a flagrant display of my virtue, how will people know it was meeeeeeee?

Anonymous Bz July 14, 2016 1:43 PM  

So Scalzi can't use photoshop either. Oh well, who cares.

Anonymous Napoleon 12pdr July 14, 2016 1:44 PM  

I'll add that real masters compare themselves to those above them, not those below them. And will go to lengths to find someone who IS above them.

Blogger bob k. mando July 14, 2016 1:44 PM  

it is endlessly amusing that Scalzi who, for no particular reason, mind, has suddenly decided that online quizzes need a defenestration.

because he totally HAS NO IDEA what's going on over at Vox Popoli, you know?

Blogger Human Animal July 14, 2016 1:47 PM  

See, they say Vox is mean and even he calls himself a cruelty artist.

Red Nationalists deal in Scalps. We forgot this. VD is reminding the world, a little bit at a time.

Blogger szopen July 14, 2016 1:47 PM  

Hm, possibly weakly relevant to a relatonship between gamma's and women's brains: Impostor syndrome is often quoted as supposed reason for lack of women in leadership roles. You can find a lot of research finding that when comparing women/men with, as far as the researchers could tell, same skills, women were considerably less confident. While I found many people saying that

(a) it simply means women accurately self-diagnose their skills, reflecting differences which were not captured by researchers
(b) it's side-effect of affirmative action
(c) it's a result of publication bias, because it captures well the current trends in sociology/psychology papers
(d) it's a trash like all research
... I think actually it may be something to that. It makes sense that men, on average, evolved to be overly confident in their abilities, because it pay offs to take risks, and overly confidence encourages you to take risks. On the contrary, it makes no sense for women to have overconfidence. It also corresponds well to my experience with women (including my wife, who is REALLY competent at what she does and yet she refused two offers of taking project leadership roles).

So, if gammas and women share impostor syndrome it might be another pebble to the stack of evidence of similarity of mind. Or it might not. Just thinking aloud here.

Anonymous Longtime Lurker July 14, 2016 1:49 PM  

The problem with Wheaton: His head goes so far up his fantasy that it comes out on top, he thinks he the normal one and the rest of us are the ones with the really serious problems.

Anonymous Bz July 14, 2016 1:50 PM  

"Imposter syndrome" is how the arrogant imagine humility. Gosh you guys, I'm awesome but inside I feel like I'm bad so please soothe my ego. What if you tried actually being humble, Wheaton?

Blogger lowercaseb July 14, 2016 1:52 PM  

Cail Corishev wrote:I always felt kind of bad for Wil Wheaton, at least at first.

Same here. He took a real beating as Wesley, which had to be hard for a kid to deal with, and it seemed at one point like he had dealt with it and become a normal adult. Apparently not.


He was hated by geeks for the longest time. That's pretty bad...however he overcame it exactly the wrong way. Instead of ignoring their opinions, he embraced them publicly and became king of the geeks instead.

I wonder if he actually believes all the boo-hoo shit himself or if he just running down the checklist of geek likes and publicly embracing them.

"You guys are depressed?!? So am I!!! Love me and keep booking me for speaking engagements at your conventions."

I can't blame him. It's not like he can go out and get an office job.

However, I am fooling myself as well. He probably isn't some geek Machiavelli playing the nerds. He probably is just as pathetic as he says.

It just makes me sad. Whatever happened to that good healthy shame in being a geek? Having a geeky interest is something that should keep you humble, not a source of overwhelming arrogance.

Anonymous Bz July 14, 2016 1:52 PM  

However, this quote is for the ages: "If I’m so smart, why is my brain so dumb?" (Wil Wheaton)

Blogger Nate July 14, 2016 1:55 PM  

“You know, you suck at everything and you don’t deserve to be here and nobody likes you because you suck. Boy do you suck. You are the suckiest bunch of sucks that ever sucked.”

WHY?

This is so alien to me I simply cannot wrap my head around it. My only conclusion is that this person has never actually been through any kind of actual competition and has never actually accomplished anything. Ever.

Blogger lowercaseb July 14, 2016 1:56 PM  

Bz wrote:"Imposter syndrome" is how the arrogant imagine humility. Gosh you guys, I'm awesome but inside I feel like I'm bad so please soothe my ego. What if you tried actually being humble, Wheaton?

I save useful quotes that I find online that help me become a better person or give me great insight. Your statement above is the both. Both a reminder that it is possible to become prideful in an attempt to be embrace humility. Consider it saved...

Anonymous DT July 14, 2016 1:58 PM  

The way it works is this part of my brain that’s supposed to be on my side but is really a dick about everything goes, “You know, you suck at everything and you don’t deserve to be here and nobody likes you because you suck. Boy do you suck. You are the suckiest bunch of sucks that ever sucked.”

Wow. Start Trek TNG fans really did a number on him when they sent him hate mail.

Anonymous Iron Spartan July 14, 2016 1:59 PM  

And I need you to be ready to burst out of the crowd, rip open your shirt to expose your true identity and say proudly, “I’m ready! I am the SUPERHERO YOU NEED!"

All the whore and politicans will look up and shout "Save Us!"
And I'll look down and whisper..."No"

Blogger VD July 14, 2016 2:02 PM  

It also corresponds well to my experience with women (including my wife, who is REALLY competent at what she does and yet she refused two offers of taking project leadership roles.

Leadership is not competence. Perhaps your wife understands this better than you do. Also, leadership is a burden and a responsibility, which is why it is not to be mindlessly pursued as desirable.

Blogger lowercaseb July 14, 2016 2:02 PM  

Nate wrote:My only conclusion is that this person has never actually been through any kind of actual competition and has never actually accomplished anything. Ever.

It's ironic because being an actor is one of the most competitive professions out there, but not healthy competitive.

How many actors does it take to change a lightbulb?

99. One to change the lightbulb, 98 to say "I could have done that better."

Note that he can't just suck. He has to be the suckiest of the sucks. Even in failing he has to be the greatest.

Poor guy. Why can't he just rob a convenience store like a normal child actor?

Anonymous kfg July 14, 2016 2:02 PM  

The Wikipedia graffiti artists have been at work:

"Michael J. "Mike" Pence is an American scum lord and degenerate who is serving as the 50th Governor of Indiana . . ."

Blogger szopen July 14, 2016 2:02 PM  

@118
You are wrong. As most people, you suffer from thinking that all other people's psyches are same as yours. According to some estimates, the impostor syndrome is suffered by about 40% by high-achieving people. High-achieving people, per definition, are men and women who achieved a lot.

Blogger Aziz P. July 14, 2016 2:04 PM  

"Higher-than-average intelligence doesn't make you any better than anyone else, any more than being taller, or faster, or stronger does. What it often does, however, is allow others to convince you that you should be something different than you are, or than you want to be. Even worse, it gives you the ability to successfully rationalize away your failures, to both yourself and others. Thus are created the Secret Kings who never, ever lose to anyone at anything, and yet feel like failures and imposters all the same."

Poetic AF. well-said.

Anonymous GracieLou July 14, 2016 2:05 PM  

I had a deeper conversation this morning over hillbilly mountain music. Husband doesn’t understand my addiction to it. I said it’s the last will and testament of American civilization, from the last generation to embrace reality. You have to look past the twang (He takes a long swig of coffee, poor man o’ constant sorrow). “You see…
It all boils down to suffering, which is a universal and CERTAIN reality of the human condition. How does one deal? If you’re a modern person you stand in the surf with your face to the beach and when the big wave comes (as it surely will) you get knocked flat on your ass and pulled under. If you’re mountain man circa 1910 your eyes are scanning the waves and when the big one comes (as it surely will) you jump and ride it out. You embrace it. “It takes a worried man to sing a worried song, I’m worried now, but I won’t be worried long.”
And you ride the wave to “glory” which every sane person understood wasn’t to be found on earth, “How happy I’ll be over in Glory, on the shore telling the story, with the redeemed of all the ages, praising the One who I adore, when I wake up to sleep no more.”
Now the bad thing is this “lost” generation didn’t do a very good job of explaining all that, they were shamed out of it by modernism (though they did preserve the wisdom in mountain music and Negro spirituals). So the greatest generation, while dutiful, didn’t understand anything at all, and they went on to create Boomers and now look at the mess we’re in.”
As an Orthodox prophet said of our times, “Their learned men will think they know everything, but not a thing will they know!” And it’s true. There is more intelligence, love and truth at a bluegrass hoe down than anything that’s ever come out of…well, anybody’s mouth in the last 50 years.

Blogger pdwalker July 14, 2016 2:10 PM  

My favourite line: The test is getting up after you are knocked down, being a good sport when you are beaten, meeting rejection with grace, meeting failure with good humor, and accepting your assigned place in the social hierarchy without demur or complaint.

One of the many reasons I love playing judo is just about all the players I've had the good fortune to practice with have this attitude and mindset.

Blogger VD July 14, 2016 2:13 PM  

High-achieving people, per definition, are men and women who achieved a lot.

Except gammas make a habit of redefining words. Scalzi and Wheaton are both well-known. They might even be described by some as "high-achieving". But neither of them merits the basis for their fame, and they both know it. They don't have "Imposter Syndrome", they are imposters.

Anyone who achieves success through luck, politicking, or salesmanship is likely to feel they don't deserve it. Because they don't.

Blogger Cail Corishev July 14, 2016 2:16 PM  

@118 Nate, I think it's worse than that: even when they do compete and succeed, they don't recognize it as such, because their pride has set the bar for themselves at "superhero" so ordinary mortal success doesn't count.

Anonymous andon July 14, 2016 2:19 PM  

94. Blogger pyrrhus July 14, 2016 1:25 PM
@83 Mike Tyson--"everyone has a plan 'til they get punched in the mouth."


yeah that's my favorite.

Blogger Tim_W_Burke July 14, 2016 2:19 PM  

Thanks for this. I think you're absolutely right.

Blogger Tom K. July 14, 2016 2:23 PM  

He did "Serial Apeist 2" with Penny from the Big Bang Theory.

Oh, and i think he mentioned "Sharknado 4"!

Anonymous GJ July 14, 2016 2:23 PM  

I'm not self-confident because I'm smart, or because I'm athletic, or because pretty girls like me, I'm self-confident because I have allowed myself to be tested, repeatedly, and I have passed the tests. The test is not winning. The test is getting up after you are knocked down, being a good sport when you are beaten, meeting rejection with grace, meeting failure with good humor, and accepting your assigned place in the social hierarchy without demur or complaint.

You can't change the past or the present. All you can change is how you approach the vicissitudes of the future.

Winning feels great. I like to win as anyone else. I've won everything from grade school competitions to NCAA Division One conference championships. But even better than winning, in terms of developing self-respect, is having the rival who has beaten you despite your best efforts treat you with respect, as an equal, and above all, as a worthy opponent.



This is a very important post. The secret king stuff is insidious. Someone could have held me down shouting "you are not special" Fight-Club style, and I'd have come out of it thinking I was special because I was one of the few who knew that I'm not special.

What gammas need to internalize is what makes someone special are truly great acts (Newton, Miyamoto Musashi, Aristotle). Not what you think you are going to do in the future. Not what you would have done if only for that bs thing that got in your way. What you have actually done. Have you done anything on the order of discovering general relativity? You are probably not special.

Not being special is not only ok, it's true for nearly everyone who's ever lived. Find your value by being graceful in victory and in defeat, emotionally stable, hard working, disciplined, etc. and not from some internalized idea of specialness despite all signs to the contrary.

Anonymous VFM #6306 July 14, 2016 2:25 PM  

So, Wil Wheaton was raped by a bear and didn't get an Oscar for it. So this is all just about him not being Leonardo DiCapprio?

The punchline is that Scalzi is reading this, pissed off that he's playing also ran to also ran Wheaton in the comments.

Interesting contrast: Wheaton's biggest role found him finding his manhood by pulling a gun on a bully, while one of Jerry O'Connell's smallest roles in the same movie had him playing the dumpy loser.

Looks like only one of them got the message. Decades later, they went to a Stand By Me reunion. O'Connell didn't know who Wheaton was.

Blogger Tim_W_Burke July 14, 2016 2:25 PM  

@ 98 Cail Coroshev "There's the crux of it: if you think that under your shirt you're a superhero, or an ordinary hero, or simply a good man with something to contribute, then why would you be waiting for a bat-signal? Why not go ahead and shed the shirt and get on with it?"

So fing true!

Blogger VD July 14, 2016 2:26 PM  

I'd have come out of it thinking I was special because I was one of the few who knew that I'm not special.

Ay caramba. If Gammas weren't so fucking annoying, so passive-aggressive, and so incapable of learning from their repeated failures, I'd almost feel sorry for them.

Blogger Salt July 14, 2016 2:29 PM  

I do hope that at some point during Wheaton's speech was heard from the back, "Shut up, Wesley."

Blogger Tom K. July 14, 2016 2:31 PM  

My son was a quitter by age 2!

We bought him a Nintendo and he learrned to push he reset button.

When he went on to face failure I always reminded him of the Reset Button.

Mapping Across domains isn't instinctive. But once it occurs to you to do it - MAGIC!

Blogger Tom K. July 14, 2016 2:34 PM  

True. But you also have a choice.

To expose yourself to Truth and Evidence or not. Every atheist I've ever known DODGED the evidence and proofs for God's existence.

Blogger residentMoron July 14, 2016 2:36 PM  

"The test is not winning. The test is getting up after you are knocked down, being a good sport when you are beaten, meeting rejection with grace, meeting failure with good humor, and accepting your assigned place in the social hierarchy without demur or complaint."

Rarely were truer words spoken.

Reminded me so strongly of my favourite text:

"The just man falleth seven times, and rises up again; but the wicked shall fall into mischief."

Blogger Leo Little Book July 14, 2016 2:38 PM  

Knowing that you're saved is a great anti-anxiolytic. To live is Christ, and to die is gain.

For a manly portrait of the True King, see The Passion of the Christ. That should cut down on volunteers for the position.

Blogger residentMoron July 14, 2016 2:39 PM  

Oh - is that proof that Scalzi reads this hateful blog?

Or did he get involved in the recent vocab thread some other way?

Anonymous Hezekiah Garrett July 14, 2016 2:42 PM  

@7 He doesn't need functioning legs, He just needs to focus on girls who like doing all the work.

Blogger Were-Puppy July 14, 2016 2:47 PM  

@78 Jay Will

I will just feel superior to them, my feeling good won't come from helping them it will be that I feel safe knowing that they are more helpless than me.
---

Not trying to offend, but what you need to realize is, the world will keep spinning if you were to step off of it. It doesn't matter if you are superior or inferior to anybody else. What are you doing with what you've been given?

Blogger Doom July 14, 2016 2:47 PM  

szopen,

Which is why, when I want or need something exact, nothing fancy, I find a woman who says she can. As a fairly solid stereotype (or used to be, not sure about the younger twat gen) they were good on their word. No better, no worse. If I'm going to hell and back, I leave the vaginas at home. Useless. Bound in fear when outside of what they know. And in the real or virtual hells of this and lower realms, nothing is truly, or can be, known... not in the lands of lies.

Iron Spartan,

Gotchya

Anonymous GJ July 14, 2016 2:49 PM  

Ay caramba. If Gammas weren't so fucking annoying, so passive-aggressive, and so incapable of learning from their repeated failures, I'd almost feel sorry for them.

Pity is surely what many gammas want, but I prefer your example, refusal to accept the narrative and your enumeration of the tools to fix the problem.

Anonymous BluePony July 14, 2016 2:58 PM  

Well, I'll fess up and admit I do have the occasional bout of Imposter Syndrome. I didn't even know it had a name until a few years ago. It's not something you apply to actual imposters, but to people who have long proven themselves in whatever endeavor they pursued.

I really question applying it to artistic fields where success is entirely subjective, as opposed to my field of engineering where something works or fails or (occasionally) explodes.

No matter how many successes I have at work, it's this little voice insisting my design really wasn't all that, or any damned fool off the street could have done it, or some similar unfounded (I design spacecraft systems) criticism.

If you're looking for a rational explanation, there is none. It's a bit harsh to call it a broken mind, though. It doesn't prevent me from succeeding.

The way I get over it is to ignore it, get my design built, bring it into the test lab, and watch it work the first time. :D

Blogger S1AL July 14, 2016 2:58 PM  

Tangential thought: gamma is a manifestation of entitlement.

"I deserve to be liked by women because I'm a nice guy."

"I deserve respect because I'm smart."

And then it gets even worse when forced to rationalize away a realization that runs contrary to that entitlement.

Anonymous BluePony July 14, 2016 3:07 PM  

"Has Wil done anything since star trek?"

He had a recurring role on Eureka.

Anonymous ZhukovG July 14, 2016 3:07 PM  

@147 I don't think the Gamma wants pity. They want recognition and submission from those they feel should be beneath them.

Blogger Arthur Isaac July 14, 2016 3:10 PM  

I knew there was a reason that MENSA made me viscerally ill.

Blogger S1AL July 14, 2016 3:12 PM  

"He had a recurring role on Eureka."

Playing an insecure, secret-king, entitled douchebag no less.

Anonymous SciVo July 14, 2016 3:15 PM  

Clearly, Wil needs to play more Pokemon Go (h/t Instapundit).

Anonymous BrerFox July 14, 2016 3:24 PM  

Regarding the discussion of leadership, I'm reminded of what has driven a number of my co-workers away from my current employer. HR is obsessed with hiring people with "leadership qualities" and developing those through their career. Already some divisions are developing a 'too many chiefs not enough Indians' issue.

Blogger szopen July 14, 2016 3:27 PM  

@118 Nate, cc VD
It is probable that I misread your words as not applied to particular instances referenced by God's voice, but rather as general statement about sufferers of Imposter Syndrome in general. If you were saying only about Scalzi/Wheaton, I apologise. I didn't want to imply that those two were high-achieving.

What I wanted to say is that there are high-achieving people, including people who compete and win at sports - at least acc. to some articles I read. I read once an interview with a trainer that there are athletes, who are not fully comitted to winning and because of that they would say "I won because I got lucky".

It's like women who will starve themselves to death, because they think they are fat, no matter what objective evidence will tell them. If you see anorectic who would whisper "all people are telling me I am OK, but I just have this feeling I'm fat" you do not react by saying "you are fat, and the fact that you think that proves you are, indeed, fat".

Blogger Snidely Whiplash July 14, 2016 3:29 PM  

Doom wrote:Let's see about these snowflake supermen.

I love that phrase. The above posters are right, we need a web comic. Too bad I can't draw.
Waitaminnit, neither can that guy that does XKCD.
I'll have to ponder this...

Blogger James Dixon July 14, 2016 3:33 PM  

> Pity is surely what many gammas want, but I prefer your example, refusal to accept the narrative and your enumeration of the tools to fix the problem.

The second time I've quoted it on this blog, I think. Howard Roark in The Fountainhead: "This is pity," he thought, and then he lifted his head in wonder. He thought that there must be something terribly wrong with a world in which this monstrous feeling is called a virtue.

Anonymous Jonathan July 14, 2016 3:35 PM  

Scalzi's tweet about vocab and knowing how to use language indicate he does not understand what he is talking about. People have ideas and concepts they want to express and develop a vocabulary around them. Thus, a small vocabulary is strong evidence that one has a small intellect.

Anonymous Cheddarman July 14, 2016 3:36 PM  

An Alpha died so the gammas could be free. The christian can nail his inner gamma to the cross of Jesus Christ.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash July 14, 2016 3:39 PM  

szopen wrote:If you see anorectic who would whisper "all people are telling me I am OK, but I just have this feeling I'm fat" you do not react by saying "you are fat, and the fact that you think that proves you are, indeed, fat".

But, what if the woman who tells you this is, in fact, fat? That her playing anorexic is just a pose to grab some victim points and pretend she's slim? That's what we're dealing with here.

VD wrote:Leadership is not competence. Perhaps your wife understands this better than you do. Also, leadership is a burden and a responsibility, which is why it is not to be mindlessly pursued as desirable.
Been there, done that. I thought it was the next step in my career. Instead it was a move to a job I hated, doing things I wasn't particularly good at, and fighting stupid battles over inconsequential crap with idiots and lying bastards. It didn't help that the company was dying. I wound up in the hospital and said "never again".

I did like mentoring and managing my team, though. If I could just do that without management battles, budgeting fights, empire builders and (((lying thieves))), I'd do it in a heartbeat.

Blogger szopen July 14, 2016 3:42 PM  

@122 VD
Leadership is not competence. Perhaps your wife understands this better than you do.
Could be, but when she discussed with me her, she also said she felt not competent enough for the job.

Also, leadership is a burden and a responsibility, which is why it is not to be mindlessly pursued as desirable.
Sure.

@148 BluePony
I have a female collegue with whom I discussed once the "impostor syndrome" and she immedietely said she also feels she is out of place. A very intelligent women, one of the best on her year, definetely more hard-working than me. While I never had that feeling myself (I think that given my own estimation of my IQ I reached the peak of my possibilities and I am exactly where, on average, one would expect me to be) I have a hunch this "feeling of being a fraud" is not uncommon.

@143
My facebook feed was filled yesterday by three different people boasting their testyourvocab scores.

Blogger Alexander July 14, 2016 3:45 PM  

@159

I'm sure Scalzi boasts that he can pronounce every word he knows, as well.

Blogger Alexander July 14, 2016 3:47 PM  

@163

Mine, too. My working assumption is:

Vox took it, all the leftists who hate Vox but deny knowing what he's up to took it for no particular reason, which led to people with 2 degrees of separation taking it without knowing the original source... which led to 3 degrees of separation...

Vox Day, thought leader.

Blogger szopen July 14, 2016 3:48 PM  

@162
But, what if the woman who tells you this is, in fact, fat? That her playing anorexic is just a pose to grab some victim points and pretend she's slim? That's what we're dealing with here.
I do not contest that. However, "there exists X who claims she is fat because she wanted your pity/you denying she is fat, AND she indeed is fat" does not invalidate the claim "there exists X who claim she is fat AND she is _not_, by all obejctive evidence, fat". Same here.

Once again, I misread Nate's words as general statement when he was just saying about specific case. It would be tempting to say it's because I am not native speaker, but I think it's more because recently seems I have a nasty tendency to be a sloppy reader. It would be a second case today alone and one of dozen similar incidents this month. Maybe I should get a break or something.

Anonymous ZhukovG July 14, 2016 3:50 PM  

@161 Have you ever met a Christian Gamma? Oy Vey! Instead of the 'Secret King', you are talking to the 'Secret Prophet of God'.

This is why Discipleship training for new believers is so important. Unfortunately guess in what role you find many Christian Gammas? Sunday School Teaching!

Anonymous DT July 14, 2016 3:58 PM  

@134 - Not being special is not only ok, it's true for nearly everyone who's ever lived. Find your value by being graceful in victory and in defeat, emotionally stable, hard working, disciplined, etc. and not from some internalized idea of specialness despite all signs to the contrary.

I would argue that anyone who manages to be graceful in victory and in defeat, emotionally stable, hard working, and disciplined in the modern west...and to maintain those traits over time...is special.

And a woman who manages that? Super hero.

Anonymous BGKB July 14, 2016 4:02 PM  

Also, leadership is a burden and a responsibility, which is why it is not to be mindlessly pursued as desirable.

"How many people here would like to earn $1 more an hour? Keep your hand up if you would accept $1 an hour to be in charge of non Asian minorities"

Blogger Austin Ballast July 14, 2016 4:06 PM  

Weaton does have a video series/channel on board game stuff. They were playing it and seemed to be sponsors at a local comic shop more than a year ago (I don't get to those very often these days).

He got 7 of 9 on one of the game playing episodes, so his fame seems to be pulling old Star Trek actors on his board game show.

Blogger Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus July 14, 2016 4:08 PM  

Scored a 30500 here. Scalzi can feel free to suaviate my cloaca.

Anonymous CC July 14, 2016 4:14 PM  

Ouch. If I was Wil's shrink I would tell him that whenever he heard that voice, just reply "Shut Up Wesley!" I'm sure he'd find it very satisfying.

So many people today have a low sense of self-worth, Western Culture through the media inculcates it and broken homes don't help. These people hate themselves so they compensate by marrying their self-esteem to something outside themselves: their intelligence, or their looks, or their wealth, or Star Wars or whatever else it is that makes them feel good. This is why they react so viscerally and irrationally when these things are threatened, it cuts right to the core of who they are. They are defined by these externals; they ignore their true selves, substituting these outside things.

This is why SJWs and gammas react the way they do whenever they feel beaten, because their inner sense of self worth and happiness is tied to the outeside world, they can't cope and therefore lose their shit.

Tragically it means they will always be slaves and puppets because: "whatever can make you feel good will also make you feel bad." So they'll always be dancing on a string.

The answer is letting go and accepting yourself; or as Vox said, "humbling yourself before God." It doesn't matter if you're rich or poor, smart or dumb, beautiful or ugly: these things are external. "Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God."

As an aside, for me this is the big difference between Christianity and the other current political belief systems today, ultimately Christianity asks that you look inside yourself and accept your faults. Modern SJWism, Communism and all other utopian idealogies preach: "you will only be happy by fixing the world around you." Which, of course, is impossible and only guarantees misery.

Blogger ray July 14, 2016 4:21 PM  

#46 --

Right. He doesn't need to imagine he's a Great Gorilla, he already imagines that. The infirm do not heal the infirm.

He needs Scripture and the humbling that attends it. I'd suggest Dalrock to start, b/c it's difficult to locate 'pastors' in America who actually conserve and teach masculinity.

What a mess this feminist nation made of that pore boy! When I was a kid, our dads made sure we didn't grow up to be like that. Most of us were involved in sports from a young age, under supervision of the town's men -- NOT under the supervision of women and their gubbermint. Losing was just part of participation and we were taught its use as motivation for improvement, not grounds for lifelong whining, pretension, and resentment.

A good OP.

Anonymous Daniel H July 14, 2016 4:24 PM  

OT: Another police murder.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3689591/California-police-release-Dylan-Noble-bodycam-shooting-footage.html

Anonymous Broken Arrow July 14, 2016 4:24 PM  

@167 A Christian Gamma is an inconsistent perfectionist of the worst kind who poisons Christians around him with a convoluted message. He tell people Jesus is forgiving, but the Gamma never forgives or forgets and is sure to bring up other people's sins when his Secret Kingship is threatened. If there's ever success in the church he'll simply raise the bar to make sure that nobody ever feels good about anything.

Anonymous Anonymous July 14, 2016 4:25 PM  

accepting your assigned place in the social hierarchy without demur or complaint

sounds like the faggiest thing I've ever heard

Anonymous Leox July 14, 2016 4:30 PM  

Imposter syndrome can simply be an intelligent recognition of one's abilities. You can see your strengths and accomplishments and realize you achieved your current level through merit while simultaneously realizing you are maybe at the highest level you can achieve, not want to progress further, and be able to acknowledge superior ability in others at your level and higher. It doesn't have to be the pathetic muddle Wheaton makes it out to be here.

Blogger LES July 14, 2016 4:37 PM  

Wil Wheaton riding a rock through the universe seems to be on the verge of Cosmic Alienation and contemplating Meaninglessness. Actually, I think he is afraid of facing the great abyss.
Not space but death. Annihilation of self.

I've been there and my Sunday School faith failed me. I loaded up on Francis Schaeffer and faced the Great Terror. Wil is looking for a superman. It's not him or his friends. It is Jesus. But Wil's sense that he is special is correct. Jesus came to rescue him, too.

Anonymous Hapax Legomenon July 14, 2016 4:42 PM  

"But the English language has over a million words. How can that be a high score?"

Most words in the OED (for example) are specialist terms not in common usage. 30k is apparently high for ordinary conversation and writing. Even Shakespeare didn't get much higher than 30k.

Anonymous kfg July 14, 2016 4:42 PM  

@176. Leox:

No. By definition. That's why it's called Imposter Syndrome.

Blogger James Dixon July 14, 2016 4:50 PM  

> I would argue that anyone who manages to be graceful in victory and in defeat, emotionally stable, hard working, and disciplined in the modern west...and to maintain those traits over time...is special.

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems-and-poets/poems/detail/46473

Anonymous andon July 14, 2016 4:53 PM  

I've never heard of this scalzi guy - aside from a few columns on here

Anonymous andon July 14, 2016 4:57 PM  

@ #174 - looks like he was white so it doesn't count

Blogger Groot July 14, 2016 4:57 PM  

@129. VD:
"Anyone who achieves success through luck, politicking, or salesmanship is likely to feel they don't deserve it. Because they don't."

What a weird world. I know what you're getting at, but no. My earliest memories (3 or so) are of noticing how stupid people were and puzzling about it. Then they skipped me some grades. And I grew tall. Then won the state athletic championship. And I'm drawn like a comic book hero. I'm no secret king: people give it to me, throw it at me, drown me in it. In my head, I'm a ten-year-old boy who likes to read, but only here, online, am I partly free of the constant pats-on-the-back.

I'm kind of bipolar: one pole is confident, happy and funny and the other pole is invincible, ecstatic, and hilarious (to myself). But who wants to be such an asshole? Just let me read. I know it's almost entirely luck, but my ongoing struggle is to keep the ego in check, not to worry about being an impostor. I know about depression the way my dog knows how to play the piano.

My friends' wives make comments about me right in front of them. Sorry, guys. But they join in. WTF. In meetings (when I had a boss), they'd all treat me like the boss, even if he was present, and even my boss. WTF.

Anonymous EH July 14, 2016 5:07 PM  

The arealme vocabulary test seems to have a low ceiling (I got 30500). For a hard test see the Schmies Vocabulary Test, a list of 200 word-pairs that are either similar or dissimilar.

The 100 IQ equivalent is a raw score of about 132, with a standard deviation of ~ 11. (By former one-in-a-million IQ society officer Robert Seitz's calculation which sets raw 165 = 99.87th percentile = 3 s.d. = IQ 145, 10.95 raw points = 1 s.d.) I suspect the s.d. may really be a point or two higher, but for converting raw scores of 150 to 180 to IQ that should be fairly close given that no test is reliable and well-normed above about IQ 150.
Approximate conversions from raw Schmies score:
155 = top 1 in 54
160 = top 1 in 182
165 = top 1 in 740
170 = top 1 in 3,656
175 = top 1 in 21,962
180 = top 1 in 160,869
185 = top 1 in 1,439,216

I got 190, equivalent to ~ verbal IQ 179 or a nominal rarity of ~1 in over 15M (with 14 out of 20 guesses correct and 4 wrong that I thought I knew.) The actual accuracy of the test is probably something like +/- 6 points and intelligence is not actually normally distributed - the tails are fat (a.k.a leptokurtic, literal meaning: "thin convex") there are more smart people than the above rarities predict.

If you want nominal rarity equivalents for higher scores, you are probably smart enough to calculate them yourself. Or use this spreadsheet function: =1/(1 - NORMDIST((((RAW - 132.15) / 10.95)*15 + 100);100;15;1)) and plug in your raw score.

Schmies vocabulary test
the auto-score isn't working so open the answers in a different window.

Blogger Arthur Isaac July 14, 2016 5:14 PM  

"Anyone who achieves success through luck, politicking, or salesmanship is likely to feel they don't deserve it. Because they don't."

Anyone who achieve success and doesn't get a few breaks, or know how to work well with others, or doesn't know how to sell themselves is God.

Even then, I wouldn't call being self existent an "unlucky" break.

Based on this criteria what alpha merits does Donald Trump have?

Blogger Arthur Isaac July 14, 2016 5:20 PM  

Alphas have every reason to be humble, the reason they don't suffer from "Impostor Syndrome" is that they're not. Impostor's suffer from secret king false humility. The truly humble understand their role in creation and couldn't care less about their social status and the praises of men. Imposters only care about status and what ways they can signal (fake) virtue in order to obtain more.

OpenID frankluke July 14, 2016 5:22 PM  

@173 What a mess this feminist nation made of that pore boy! When I was a kid, our dads made sure we didn't grow up to be like that. Most of us were involved in sports from a young age, under supervision of the town's men -- NOT under the supervision of women and their gubbermint. Losing was just part of participation and we were taught its use as motivation for improvement, not grounds for lifelong whining, pretension, and resentment.

It wasn't until I started reading here that I understood why my grandfather always argued against women's coaches on the elementary-aged summer leagues.

Blogger Jed Mask July 14, 2016 5:27 PM  

"The test is not winning. The test is getting up after you are knocked down, being a good sport when you are beaten, meeting rejection with grace, meeting failure with good humor, and accepting your assigned place in the social hierarchy without demur or complaint."

Yes, yes. Very true. Amen.

Anonymous BGKB July 14, 2016 5:31 PM  

OT: Wanting gay men to have functional livers & kidneys is bigoted. "LA LGBT Center Blasts AIDS Healthcare Foundation For Denouncing PrEP in Powerful Video"

PrEP is a drug that costs over $1500 a month per person, usually picked up by taxpayer or others on insurance plan, is hard on the liver/kidneys. Used in place of condoms. It also doesn't work against any other STDs, & Drug Resistant AIDS arrived in the US this year.
http://www.towleroad.com/2016/07/aids-healthcare-foundation/

Blogger mistaben July 14, 2016 5:37 PM  

Launching a Leadership Revolution by Orrin Woodward is my top pick for this.

Anonymous andon July 14, 2016 5:51 PM  

Arthur Isaac July 14, 2016 5:20 PM

The truly humble.......couldn't care less about their social status and the praises of men.


its tough to get there though

OpenID sigsawyer July 14, 2016 6:02 PM  

I scored in the top 4%- who's guessing that this 22y/o college dropout did better than Scalzi?

Blogger The Kurgan July 14, 2016 6:06 PM  

VD. Yop. You nailed it.
You can lie to others, you can even lie to yourself, but the price is your honour, your soul, your heart.
I (thank God) have not even the inkling of an idea of why or how people do that. Even at the height of my teenage atheism the very concept of denying my own nature or reality just never even entered my head.
I have no clue how these people become that way.
But it is definitely one more fingerprint of the eternal psychopath that not only do they exist, but are in fact, present in huge numbers.

Anonymous Sophia July 14, 2016 6:16 PM  

The Gamma lives in perpetual fear of being put on the B Ark.

Anonymous JI July 14, 2016 6:18 PM  

Well, I don't feel I have a broken mind or suffer anxiousness, but these two bits of advice from Vox connected with me:
1. Humble yourself before God.
2. Give Man the opportunity to humble you.

That's fantastic. I'm going use those and quote those regularly, Vox. Thanks, I knew there was a reason I frequent your blog and those two gems are prime examples.

Blogger JCclimber July 14, 2016 6:53 PM  

Best cure for gamma is to commit to becoming a Christian for the following reasons:
You must realize that He is your superior in every single possible way. And that is a wonderful thing.
You accept that you are an addict to sin, and a loser in the sense that you will not, ever, be able to save yourself no matter how awesome you may be.
You accept as true that you can never be that high in the kingdom of God which will endure forever, and it won't matter at all.
You accept that every talent and ability were a gift and a blessing that came from God for His purpose for your life, and it is your privilege to use them for others as well as yourself. There is no shame in enjoying the benefits of your talents, if you keep it in perspective and give the glory to Whom it belongs.
You become honest about yourself and accept your failings as your own fault. You will finally have the courage to look inside and see that you aren't really the Secret King.
You embrace the fact that He has many blessings for your life right here, right now, but you learn to reject the world's standards of right and wrong and self-glorification.
Your pride will be put into perspective. None of your accomplishments will overshadow a Sampson, a Solomon, a King David, a Moses, Daniel, Paul, Enoch. Much less, Jesus Christ.

tl;DR - Committing daily to Christ will finally kill the gamma inside. Too bad so many churchians have missed that opportunity by not committing fully.

Blogger Paul, Dammit! July 14, 2016 7:01 PM  

Shut up, Wesley.

Blogger John Wright July 14, 2016 7:16 PM  

@142
"To live is Christ, and to die is gain.

For a manly portrait of the True King, see The Passion of the Christ. That should cut down on volunteers for the position."

Well said, brother! Preach it!

When womenfolk get annoyed at me for quoting St. Paul on a man being the head of his wife, I discover they never understand the kind of crown being discussed. It is the crown of thorns. Paul asks men to be the head of the household as Christ is the head of the Church.

He is not asking you to be a secret king. He is asking you to shoulder the burden of leadership, where you own every failure that happens on your watch, because the buck stops with you.

He is talking about self sacrifice.

Christians have the only humble God of all the gods men have ever worshiped. Marvel not that Lucifer, the original Secret King, fell from highest to lowest on the world's first day, for he is the King of all the Sons of Pride.

Blogger John Wright July 14, 2016 7:37 PM  

Were only there a way Mr. Scalzi could be avulsed from the proud inner voice giving him such bad advice about restricting his vocabulary, his writing might grow less cunicular.

How sad! O, the leporinity! Had I capacity for pity, I would become atrabilious.

If only Mr. Scalzi would pay more heed to the delight found in an accurate word well used, I dare say he could rise to be a one man thalassocracy in the winedark seas of speculative fiction literature.

No, I am completely kidding. I just felt the irresistible need to use the word 'avulse' in a sentence.

Blogger The Kurgan July 14, 2016 7:45 PM  

I... I never... That looks like JCW just executed a bitchslap!

Deus Vult may happen yet!

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