Archive for February, 2010

The science of smiling

February 21, 2010

This post is long overdue. At my place of work, smiling seems to be essential. If you don’t smile 24/7, you are viewed in negative light. Not by the guests (because honestly, I don’t think they care), but by other colleagues. Especially senior management. To them, if you’re not constantly smiling, they assume you have some sort of genetic defect. Either that, or they classify you as an angry suicidal bitch. That’s not a direct quote, but it’s a fact nonetheless.

Personally, I’m not a big smiler. Smiling consumes a lot of my already low energy levels. Also, I don’t see a need for it. If something is funny or cute or delicious, I will smile. But I don’t walk down the street and smile at people. Because it’s just wrong. I fucking hate it when people (especially strangers) smile at me, so why the hell would I smile at them? It’s the Golden Rule.

Anyway, the other day I was alerted that I must change my facial expression, especially at work. This is something I cannot do, however, because I’m a very bad fake-smiler. Either my smile is genuine, or I don’t smile at all. That’s just how I roll.

I decided to conduct research on the subject, to see if there is a way for one to actually perfect the art of fake smiling. Apparently it’s a lot more difficult than I imagined. According to an article I read on BBC,

Fake smiles can be performed at will, because the brain signals that create them come from the conscious part of the brain and prompt the zygomaticus major muscles in the cheeks to contract. These are the muscles that pull the corners of the mouth outwards.

Genuine smiles, on the other hand, are generated by the unconscious brain, so are automatic. When people feel pleasure, signals pass through the part of the brain that processes emotion. As well as making the mouth muscles move, the muscles that raise the cheeks – the orbicularis oculi and the pars orbitalis – also contract, making the eyes crease up, and the eyebrows dip slightly.

Lines around the eyes do sometimes appear in intense fake smiles, and the cheeks may bunch up, making it look as if the eyes are contracting and the smile is genuine. But there are a few key signs that distinguish these smiles from real ones. For example, when a smile is genuine, the eye cover fold – the fleshy part of the eye between the eyebrow and the eyelid – moves downwards and the end of the eyebrows dip slightly.

Very fucking interesting. After reading this, I decided to test myself. Can I spot the difference between a fake smile and a genuine one? I watched a series of short video clips. Each clip was about five seconds long, and I could only watch each clip once, at the end of which I had to click on “genuine” or “fake.” I scored a 19/20. That means I’m a genius and should become ruler of the world. It also means that fake smiles are not convincing, so why smile at all?

With Google at my fingertips, I decided to search for the answer to this question. Why smile? I found a website about the Top 10 Reasons to Smile, which are exactly my Top 10 Reasons Not to Smile.

  1. Smiling makes us attractive. We are drawn to people who smile. What the shit? I don’t want people to be drawn to me! Especially at work! I’ve found that when I mistakenly smile in public because I remembered something funny, a guest actually comes up to me and either asks me a stupid question (i.e. “Are there fish in the Lazy River?” – IT’S A FUCKING WATERPARK! NO THERE ARE NO FISH IN THE HIGHLY CHLORINATED WATER! ARE YOU FUCKING RETARDED?!) or wants to befriend me. Specifically old people. Like wrinkly old men and women tell me how pretty and nice I am. Fuck that.
  2. Smiling changes our mood. Okay, I don’t know about the rest of the world, but I’m fully in control of my own mood. I thought that was normal? If I’m angry it’s because I want to be angry. Smiling in an angry context doesn’t make sense. Unless it’s an evil, malicious smile, like the one I do right before a kill. Hahaha, you’re gunna die.
  3. Smiling is contagious. God forbid I ever get stuck in a room full of smiling people.
  4. Smiling relieves stress. No, that’s wrong. Unproven. Rejected.
  5. Smiling boosts your immune system. Are you fucking serious?! So the cure for AIDS is smiling? Impossible.
  6. Smiling lowers your blood pressure. I already have low blood pressure. So thank you very much zygomaticus major muscle, but I don’t need you.
  7. Smiling releases endorphins, natural pain killers, and serotonin. Incorrect. I’ve broken my spine. Smiling didn’t help. I’ve seen women give birth before. Smiling doesn’t help.
  8. Smiling lifts the face and makes you look younger. I don’t want my face lifted. And if anything, smiling only creates more wrinkles in the long run.
  9. Smiling makes you seem successful. Ha! “Seem successful.” I don’t need to be a fake-smiling douschebag to seem successful. I can just tote around a blood-stained axe, wear my good suit, and bludgeon people to death. How’s that for successful?
  10. Smiling helps you stay positive. I can’t even comment on this one. Posi-what? Brain… shutting… down… Can not process. Must… frown…

So there you have it. All I learned from this little online research endeavour is that smiling is for pansies. So unless you say something funny or approach with caution (and presents), don’t expect me to flash a smile.

SMS snippets

February 19, 2010

Have you ever been so bored that you read through old SMS archives on your mobile? I have. And some of them are just too funny to keep to myself, so I thought I’d post them here for all the world to see. I think the fact that they’re out of context makes reading them even more humorous. But don’t worry, anonymity is a given.

  • Ok… This is gonna take longer than I anticipated. P.s remind me to evict/bomb atleast half the buildings in discovery gardens
  • Do you like Doritos?
  • I have 30 dhs. From our grandmother. She thinks thats enough to have a bitchin time in the worlds largest mall. Luckily i also have the equivilent of 90 dhs in egyptian pounds.
  • Ona Johnson… Get in ma belleh!
  • Whore whore WHORE!!!!! FUCKING DIE!!!!!!!
  • I have to go back to al quoz ind area at 11 so no time for sleep sleep, joy to the fuckin world! Anyways since I’m gonna be suffering today, I hope from deep down inside that u encounter manbearpig AND chucky today :) P.s they are real and I know for a fact that they prey on the brains of 21 year old german girls soooo ye… Have a great day!! :D
  • I am planning to get you 2012 for your birthday.
  • They just played her on the radio. My ears have been raped.
  • Lock the door dont forget!! Twice please. Otherwise black paw will get us! Bye
  • OKAY ALL JOKING ASIDE ARE YOU SOMEHOW RETARDED?!
  • Munir lives… There is no God.
  • MY MUSIC VIDEO IS ON!!! It’s onnnnnnnnn omg why arent you here? Poop on you!

Maybe I’m the only one who thinks this shit is funny. But then again, that’s all that really matters. Because no one cares about you. This is my fucking blog. Whammy!

In other, completely unrelated news, I haven’t changed my contacts since 2009 and my eyes are bleeding (I think). So there won’t be a real post today, only this one. Maybe a dream post in the near future. Depends on if I can function as soon as I wake up.

Lomography?

February 17, 2010

I’ve been in a very vintage mood recently. Whether it be my desktop background, my choice of music, or my style of clothing, everything seems to have an old-school twist to it these days. Could it be that I’m getting old?

It’s that time of year again…

February 9, 2010

Okay everyone, we’re now a week (and a bit) into the wonderful month of February. I’m sure you all know by now that this means it is a time of joyous celebration and festivity. Not only because the end of winter is near, but also because I am approaching twenty-two fucking years of life on this godforsaken planet.

So for those interested, I have finally compiled my birthday wishlist:

  1. A pony. Preferably one with magical powers.
  2. A camera. At this point in my life, based on my poverty and lack of photo-taking technology, I’m going to be completely honest and say I’m not picky. However, something digital and simple (with high resolution nonetheless) would be in order. Underwater capabilities would be a definite plus.
  3. Two katrillion dollars.
  4. My own planet.
  5. A python and/or iguana, who shall be named Billy and Izzy, respectively.
  6. New Uggs, because my current ones are starting to look dilapidated, and people tell me I look homeless when I wear them. Any colour will suffice, although I’m not particularly a fan of the black ones.
  7. Dare I say, a Blackberry? I’m not too sure whether or not I’ll actually like it though. It just seems to be the norm nowadays, and sometimes I wish I had a Blackberry as a status symbol in today’s fucked up society.
  8. A gift voucher for Virgin, because there’s heaps of things I love in that store, ranging from T-shirts to Apple appliances.
  9. The newest (legal) version of Adobe Photoshop. I used to have a legit version on my old computer, but it was old. Like my computer. Now I have a new computer and no Photoshop. I had a trial version until recently, but then I had to restart my laptop, so my thirty day period expired and now I’m sad. This wish is in direct relation to Wish #2.
  10. The power to control time.
  11. The ability to make human suffrage legal.
  12. 2012.
  13. An African grey parrot who is already trained to speak proper English and follow simple commands. Of course, I would further train him to be my accomplice in world domination, but for the time being, a simple yet open-minded one will do. This wish surpasses Wish #5 by a large margin, but does not necessarily replace it.
  14. My very own crystal meth laboratory. I’ve been working on it for several months now, but it’s a lot more difficult than it seems. So having an up-and-running one would help me a lot, both financially and emotionally.
  15. A new wardrobe. Not physically, rather, content-wise. As in, don’t go to IKEA and buy me a new closet. Instead, get me a lot of new cute clothes, including jeans, shirts, shorts, jackets, and shoes. If you’re confused as to what clothes to buy me, see Wish #3.
  16. A little Asian dude who can be my personal slave/masseur for the rest of my life.
  17. Any form of free dental care. I have several things I wish to accomplish, including a routine checkup, cleaning, the removal of unwanted wisdom teeth, and whitening. Any/all of the above will suffice.
  18. Sushi dinner.
  19. A car. AC and brakes are a plus.
  20. More creativity/brain cells.
  21. Something to kill people with. Household weapons no longer do the trick. A bazooka or two would be nice.
  22. Higher metabolism.

Alright, well that pretty much sums things up! I posted my address somewhere once before, but I’ll have to find it again for those of you who don’t stalk me and haven’t memorised it already. Let me know if you’d like me to tell it to you again.

Other than that, have a good February, and enjoy the shittiest holiday of the year (Valentine’s Day). I’ll be working like the Jumeirah slave that I am.


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