Saturday, July 02, 2005
Though we don’t usually think about it, what are human beings but individual collections of atoms that behave (for the most part) in systematic and orderly ways? And indeed, if this is true, could it not also be possible that actual physical laws could be formulated to model human behavior? What a boon that could be! In the Victorian age, this issue was thought to have been settled. People behaved in orderly ways, and were as predictable as clockwork. Courtship and marriage followed each other in orderly succession, as almost everybody married up by the time they were in their mid-twenties, if they lived that long. Nonetheless, times were changing, and that inscrutable phenomenon called romance began to more and more enter as a real factor in determining the nature of relationships. It was into this unsettling picture that a man entered who would revolutionize the social laws that govern behavior. That man was Einstein. Of course, this was not the Albert Einstein who revolutionized our knowledge of the physical universe, but rather his unjustly ignored younger brother Hank. It was Hank Einstein who in his Special and General Theories of Party Relativity established those social laws that led to many of the social structures that we see today, and some that we can do without, like singles bars.
With his older brother Albert, Hank would take the street car to work in turn of the century Zurich. Like Albert, Hank would also indulge in daily reveries, or thought experiments, that would manipulate the world in different ways and would in turn lead to surprising inferences. But whereas Albert spent his time thinking about speeding streetcars moving to and fro, Hank would fantasize about the amount of time he had to fraternize with the pretty fraulein sitting near the front of his trolley. He soon discovered that the time he had to make his move was not absolute, but rather relative to where the lady made her scheduled stop, and how fast the streetcar was going. He reasoned that if the trolley was going at the speed of light, he would have no time at all to approach the lady, hence it followed that fast streetcars are not conducive to socializing.
Han’s seminal works led party physicists to derive four fundamental forces that underlie the social universe that we know and tolerate. These forces are gravity, the strong force, the weak force, and electromagnetism. These forces form the core of modern party physicks.Gravity
Einstein found that people were not uniformly scattered throughout the social cosmos. Instead, they would all tend to gravitate together at certain social spots across town. If this gravitational force brought enough people together, this interaction would ignite the crowd in radiant social combustion, and thus produce a hot night spot. Sometimes to many people would be attracted to such a volatile mixture, and the resulting crunch would pulverize all social interaction, and allow no conversation to escape or be heard by anybody for that matter. The resulting social entity is called a black hole, and can usually be found in different bars around a city on a Saturday night.
The Strong Force
The strong force is responsible for keeping people at a distance at a party. Hence people who haven’t been introduced circle about each other in wide orbits until the orbit decays as their courage rises, or until a formal introduction is made.
The Weak Force
After suitable introductions, an individual will usually remain connected in conversation with the other party until a suitable stage of boredom is reached, or unless he or she spots someone else a whole lot more desirable to talk to. It is the weak force that governs these tenuous party ties.
Finally, if a man and a woman get a charge out of each other, they may bind together for a much longer time, and will spin off together in anticipation of ever more excited personal interactions. If the electricity is strong enough between the two, the two will ‘pair-bond’ and become a wholly new physical entity: the charged couple. The charged couple represents a unique interpersonal interaction that can only be dissolved through the exercise of a specially designed atom smasher. This device is called divorce court.
People are hard enough to read as it is without a further complicating factor stemming from the fact that we ‘know’ we are trying to read on another. Since we often don’t want to be read, we usually try to throw off an unwanted observer by responding in a way that is determined by how we’re being observed to begin with. For example, a gentleman will approach a lady at a party, and with a few subtle questions and equally subtle body language, will attempt to determine the lady’s true position in life and her momentum towards dating him. The gentleman’s observation causes the lady’s ambivalence to collapse as she chooses a position and momentum that is determined by the gentleman’s mode of observation. Thus, although he thinks he is getting a glimmer of what she’s like and what she wants, all he’s really getting is a response that is determined by how he went about observing her in the first place. The lesson of a quantum psychology is that your understanding of a person’s real opinion towards you is an always changing function of how you interact with him or her. You simply cannot divorce yourself from this equation because you are an essential part of that equation.
The fact that individuals know that hey are being observed and judged leads them to disguise, with various levels of success, any undesired revelations of their character or intentions that may be inferred from their body language, physical appearance, or conversation. This makes the act of reading other people’s behavior an indeterminate discipline at best. Thus, although we can interpret from another person’s behavior heretofore unrevealed tendencies and motivations, this interpretation is almost always an approximate. The best addition to any psychological insight is therefore a health dose of skepticism.
To get the right chemistry going in any social gathering, you must simply get the chemistry right. That’s when a good knowledge of party chemistry is crucial. As a vital subdiscipline of party physicks and the art of bartending, party chemistry demonstrates how the individual particularities of people are due to the fact that people behave like, well, particles. These human particles, which we will call homuncules, jostle about and interact in a variety of ways that are wholly predictable given the social setting that we establish for them. The party chemist is concerned with manipulating this setting, or should we say party solution to achieve those complex yet fragile social interactions that make for good parties.
The world of the homuncule centers on two elementary particles whose orbiting dance makes the world go round. These particles have opposite yet wholly complementary polarities, and are known as the malecule and femalecule. The malecule is a skittish and hyperactive sort that would bound about from one femalecule to another if it was not subjected to constant pressure from the social atmosphere. This social pressure varies from high (singles bar) to low (family social), hence it is important to set the social atmospheric pressure beforehand if certain behavior is expected. In contrast to the malecule, the femalecule is very stable, and often remains in a stationary position in wait for the malecule who has the right chemistry. The femalecule is also reactive to social pressure, and will tend to more readily repulse attracted malecules if the social pressure is high than if the pressure was low.
Eventually, the malecule begins to lose its social elasticity, and settles into a nice tight orbit around the receptive femalecule. This pair bonding later results in a curious subdivision of the femalecule into the original femalecule and one or more babycules. The resulting malecular complex is high radioactive, and is known as a nuclear family. To understand social situations that directly lead to this bonding, we must understand the individual characteristics of the respective malecules and femalecules which make up chemland solutions, and the various party solutions that can create both desirable and undesirable interactions.
Chemland Singles Bar
In the chemland singles bar, females begin to aggregate on the outer edge of the bar surface. The bar will then provide a template for the initiation of possible pair bonding when freely circulating males of appropriate positive valence randomly approach. The influence of the weak force cause most males to slowly rotate in even widening circles with drink in hand. However, the attractive force of a female patron may cause the male to break from his orbit and approach her. Since females tend to arrive in a matrix of three or four, the male will first attempt to separate one female from this friendship bond. If the male has a low positive charge or a negative charge, the female will repulse the male, but a high positive charge will facilitate bonding and an evening of highly charged activity.
The solution in bars is by nature highly unstable, with a new flow of males and females continuously passing through the mixture. The additional high number of circulating malecules and femalecules compounds the problem further, resulting in the temporary bonding of males and females who only later discover that their initial chemistry is all wrong. They will quickly separate, only to reenter the volatilesolution on the next Saturday night.
Chemland singles bars are unusual environments because of the high density and pressure to which malecules and femalecules are subjected. This causes a breakdown of the normal physical laws which govern their behavior. Because of this, self respecting chemlanders the value physical law avoid such a chaotic environment.
The Chemland Theme Club
The Chemland theme club ciruclates homuncules in a constant state of perculation which serves the long term result of hardening the outer shell of each homuncule. However, this constant homuncular jostling about prevents the union of malecules and femalecules, no matter how hard all this activity will cause them to become. At the end of each session, most homuncules will not settle to the bottom of the solution for more complex interactions. They will instead vent out of the solution at high speeds, only to resettle back in different party solutions where they will employ the positive valences wrought by their newly toned malecular shell to initiate improved bonding activity.
The Chemland Yachting Party
The yachting party is a highly charged solution and represents the perfect medium for the creation of new and fascinating malelcular bonding. The temperature of the solution is first set to warm by holding the party at a private home. This causes entering male and femalcules to percolate all through the solution, and for the femalecules in particular to separate out from the peculiar three and four part matrices that they arrive in. Since most of the guests have highly positive valences, many males and females begin to rotate in tight personal orbits, and separate when the female transmits a messenger gene (a phone number) to the male. This message allows the male to arrange a long distance orbit around the female. This rotation is further facilitated by the catalytic action of the party hosts, who initially act to bridge the mutual repulsion that normally occurs between two guests who for the first time approach each others personal space.
Unlike the chemland singles bar, the type and number of new male and females that are injected into the solution is controlled by an invitation list. This allows the party chemist to monitor closely the unique interactions of the guests, and helps him to plan better parties with new and better malecular mixes.
Chemland Family Social
Chemland family socials return homuncules to the homuncular aggregate that catalyzed them years ago. This primordial soup embodies most of the rudimentary patterns of interaction that occurred when the homuncule was young. These interactions may repel the homuncule, who often retreats to his room and promptly bolt the door behind him.
Chemland Theme Party
Upon entry into a theme party, the normal homuncular motion is distorted by the false vacuum of the party theme, which sucks many reluctant male and femalecules into an unnatural alloy with the party them, such as a collection of weird art work. The party theme may also temporarily freeze homuncules in their tracks. Thus a speech on the plight of the Albanian newt may cause a homuncular paralysis all out or proportion to the merits of the topic. Nonetheless, these chemland themes provide a template that shapes the mutual affinities of homuncules towards each other, who may use the prevalent topics of the hour as the lead in to possible pair bonding.
Chemland House Party
The house party is a non-reactive solution since the malecules have rarely a chemical affinity towards one another, and any interactions between the guests is due to random motion, and is normally fleeting and of little consequence. Party chemists usually come up with this unremarkable mixture when they begin their career, and are sadly discouraged from further experimentation when they find out that they have to pour the whole mess out and start over with a new solution as well as a better guest list.
Chemland Singles Party
In this party, male and femalcules are tagged upon entry to trace their interactions through the party solution. However, this obvious denotement of homuncular singularity is resented by many homuncules, who promptly shed the tags on the first occasion.
There is much homuncular jostling about in singles parties, but very little bonding takes place. This is because most of the guests have become inert due to a very long history of chemland interactions. Because the party solution is rather stale, highly charged guests often vent out of the party and escape as soon as they appear. If a charged femalecule descends into the solution, she will attract all nearby malecules of an opposite sexual polarity, which will form an encrustation around the femalecule much like a chemical lint. This pressure will usually cause the femalecule to shoot out of the solution at great speed, never to be heard from again.
Singles parties are a great solution for inert unattached homuncules, who percolate from one party to another with lethargic abandon. These parties are a storage vat for homuncules past their prime, and provide a valuable function for party chemists who do not want such homuncules diluting the other party solutions they have in preparation.