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Necro - I know. However, I'd be willing to bet that few current readers have seen it and we're kind of hurting for new content, so it's probably fine to mine the archives a bit.

That being said, I really enjoyed this article. It seems to check with my own experiences reasonably well and shed some new light on the subject (for me at least). I hadn't really looked at the rack and stack of power to this level of detail nor considered closely where the power of voters really lies. It's also one of the few places where there's a good rational argument for why "Blue Team" "Green Team" is destructive (most of the other content on the site - including the fable of Green and Blue - seem to focus more heavily on the fact that it's annoying when people act irrationally rather than discussing a specific situation where that irrationality is actually harming them).

Interesting stuff.

This threw me for a loop when I created my LW account. It took some searching around before I found this answer in the solved section of the bug reporting page for the site. In hindsight it seems simple enough, but perhaps it should be added to the wiki page on posting that you need to confirm account via email first.

Sounds like it will be a blast. The nerves may just be from going solo then. Sounds like you know what your about though, so I'd just override any trepidation and go for it.

I did something similar a few weeks ago (admittedly with some friends). We were probably 40 miles from anywhere where we could flag down a car, and hiked into the woods several miles along the trail. My backpack broke inside the first mile, one of my friends slipped and fell into a stream, there were coyotes in the camp at night, and of course it rained. We all made it out sleepy sore and soggy the next, day but definitely felt better for having gone. Would do again.

You'll have a good time, no worries.

Have you gone camping like this before? If you have, were you by yourself when you did? I'm just trying to eliminate the source of your unease being something simple like stepping out of your comfort zone.

While the MoR example is a good one, don't bother defending Eliezer's response to the linked post. "Something bad is now arbitrarily good, what do you do?" is a poor strawman to counter "Two good things are opposed to each other in a trade space, how do you optimize?"

Don't get me wrong, I like most of what Eliezer has put out here on this site, but it seems that he gets wound up pretty easily and off the cuff comments from him aren't always as well reasoned as his main posts. To allow someone to slide based on the halo effect on a blog about rationality is just wrong. Calling people out when they do something wrong - and being civil about it - is constructive, and let's not forget it's in the name of the site.

The whole calibration thing definitely fits my experience. I think you just have to build up some comfort with being in a sexual situation.

Regardless of fault, it's not rational to drag your parents or your upbringing into the situation at this point. They may have been the root cause of the problem, but they can do nothing to fix it for you now. However, it IS within your power to do that.

If I can gain some basic level of sexual confidence by having some sexual experiences...

This can help, but I think it's just confidence in general that will help you in social situations. Fake it until you make it (become it). Your self image is largely impacted by your behavior even if the behavior is forced (look up some of the research done by Amy Cuddy, it's interesting stuff). As for the “Weird Tells,” remember that what's going on in your head is a mystery to others. Someone with only part of the information is going to assume the worst. You see some attractive woman you'd like to talk to, but you don't know what to say or how to break the ice. So you don't say anything and now you feel uncomfortable. She sees this uncomfortable, anxious looking dude who seems to be paying way too much attention to her... Danger Will Robinson! Danger! I think it's better to be awkward and open than awkward and withdrawn. The first makes you seem less of a threat and the second lets the imagination go crazy. Either case exposes you to a lot of potential negative feedback, so just accept that as a given and drive on.

I'd like to say something along the lines of “you should try with women that you may actually be able to form a relationship with.” To be honest though, If I were in your shoes, I know I'd be looking pretty seriously at Nevada right about now.

Finally, there's no dark side here, and it's not irrational. Thinking that you shouldn't have, shouldn't want, or don't deserve what 7 billion other people have and want is pretty irrational. Make the map fit the territory. MrMind is right, you don't need to rationalize doing something that's perfectly rational to begin with.

In any case, good luck with your sex life (and good luck with that novel too).

This. I love consistency in the rules as laid out by the author. It's inconstancy that breaks my suspension of disbelief, and that applies to fantasy, scifi, or a story of any genre where the characters suddenly do something out of character (especially if it's obviously for the purpose of driving the plot). Iron Man 3 made my skin crawl as the rules constantly changed throughout the movie for the sole purpose of driving some aspect of each fight sequence. Or the ridiculousness that was Gravity, just so much of that movie... ugh, doesn't help to have a working knowledge of orbital mechanics. (movie, book, w/e the suspension of disbelief rules are the same regardless of media)

As an interesting aside, once something has rules, even if the rules involve some level of unpredictability, then that something ceases to be magic in the way described by Less Wrong. It can be studied and it can have useful predictive models built around it. The problem with magic is the "because magic" explanation. If you imagine a world with "magic" and are able to deconstruct the reason for some magical occurrence in that world according to a reliable predictive model then the explanation is no longer "magic" at all.

Another interesting aside, just think about how magical things in the modern world would seem to someone without the background knowledge needed to understand it. Is that box shoving electrons back and forth to flip binary switches allowing me to store, manipulate, and search the internet for information? More likely that box is hosting a malevolent spirit. The first explanation is just too absurd.

I find it curious that this post is being down voted. While the weight issue doesn't address the new age or spiritual stuff, it does impact self esteem (which may or may not be intermingled with some of the more far out things she's confessed to experiencing). Besides, being healthy is just a generally good thing.

I feel that tailoring your approach to be more new age-y as Hollander suggested would be more effective - as in the wraith example above, it's within the rules she seems to operate by. However, I'm not sure how you would broach the subject without causing more problems. You kind of need her to want this for herself before you can do anything.

In any case, good luck Crono.

I don't believe that for a second though. Everything we know is likely as wrong a phlogiston, though our predictions are surely getting more accuate. "We cannot know" is just hitting the worship button - which I'm fine with if you are talking about "what's the meaning of life." However, this is the mechanics of the universe, so we should probably stay away from that particular button in this case. Don't forget a singularity is Not an anomaly in reality itself, it is an anomaly in our models' ability to predict was will happen in reality. So time makes no sense in a singularity - that means the model for time will need to be changed. That's not the same as there is no answer.

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