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messenger says...

I lived in Turkey for four years, and after a while I noticed that Turks didn't respond well to my smiling. They didn't understand it as a friendly signal, and it actually caused friction. I never asked about it, but I somehow caught on that they thought I was stupid. I thought about it, and it made perfect sense to me that it was stupid to smile at things that shouldn't make you happy.

So I stopped smiling in stores and restaurants, with coworkers, and even with Turkish friends. My interactions with people improved noticeably.

After four years, I moved back to Canada, where I continued not smiling for no reason. I've never been able to get back into the habit. I just feel stupid and unnatural smiling for no reason. People smile at me just because they see me, and they smile politely. I can't smile back. I just raise my eyebrows.

People now tell me constantly that I'm too sad, that I should smile more that I'm not happy. Now, there's some truth to that -- I do suffer from depression -- but that predates living in Turkey and it's only since then that anyone's accused me of being sad, or even noticed that I don't smile as much as I should. I've had to train my friends out of referring to me as grumpy.

My job is teaching English as a Second Language to students from all over the world. My Western students -- particularly the Latinos -- tell me daily (literally) that I don't smile enough. My East Asian and Eastern European students have never said a word in that direction. I just realized the divide now after watching this video.

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Infinite Trees Are Super Weird - Vi Hart

messenger says...


Learn something every day.

Zawash said:

I thought it was clear-cut, but there appears to be some debate:
"Whether mathematics itself is properly classified as science has been a matter of some debate. Some thinkers see mathematicians as scientists, regarding physical experiments as inessential or mathematical proofs as equivalent to experiments. Others do not see mathematics as a science, since it does not require an experimental test of its theories and hypotheses. Mathematical theorems and formulas are obtained by logical derivations which presume axiomatic systems, rather than the combination of empirical observation and logical reasoning that has come to be known as the scientific method. In general, mathematics is classified as formal science, while natural and social sciences are classified as empirical sciences."
More on the subject here.

Infinite Trees Are Super Weird - Vi Hart

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