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Intelligent Kids Go To University


Levy

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Do you know a shallow person?
Do you know a shallow person?

Hey all,

 

I'm currently working at a retail store, done highschool and probably starting college in the fall. However one of my co-workers said something today that really bothered me.

 

To begin let me just say that he's the most shallow and vain person that I've ever met. Not to mention he has no personality and whenever I talk to him I feel like I'm talking to a wall. So I shouldn't even pay attention to what he says, but I can't help letting it bothered me.

 

Someone made a remark about him being smart and he replied "Of course I'm smart, I go to university". He said it in a way that suggests that anyone that doesn't go to universiry isn't as intelligent. And I know that this isn't true, I know that there are plenty of people that haven't gone to university or haven't gone to any school at all and are just as intelligent. I don't think you can generalize like that, people come in all sorts of varieties.

 

What do you guys think?

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Like hersmudders said, best thing you can do is to drop it and not let it get to you. You said yourself he has little depth to him. If that what he thinks, feel sorry for him, but don't let it get under your skin.

 

But I understand. I feel a bit insulted when people think I should be doing something better with my life. As if it's one of the lowest things to be.

 

As a few posters said, it's just his insecurities talking/him making up for them.

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You have already said that this person is shallow and vain, and you know he's not worth listening to, but I get that this still bugs you. Yes, ignore it, he's obviously lacking, and he's probably not a tenth as smart as he thinks he is. I knew some really dumb people at Uni (including people doing PhDs, by the way), people without a molecule of common sense or social awareness, or critical thought, or independence, etc etc. And many of these dummies could not hold a candle to the non-University people I have been friends with over the years. I think that Uni can say a lot for someone, but it's no guarantee, and it certainly doesn't hold that people without a degree are any less bright.

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Thanks you guys, I really needed to talk to somebody about this.

 

Hersmudders, I truly admire you because your choice to be a pet sitter, it was a brave one. I can tell you have a passion for animals and theres not many people that can say they love their job. Its all about money, but passion is whats real.

 

Everyone else, yeah he really isnt as smart as he thinks he is. He's actually very hard to read and I think it because he puts on an act. He tries to use bigger words when he speaks, he dresses very preppy/formal and he tries to talk philisophical to appear smarter. He's also verrry judgemental and he considers himself to be a non-conformist by nature (when really it just seems like he's making a conscious effort to be "different").

 

I know most of you think he made that comment because deep down he's insecure but I don't think he is. He's so wrapped up in himself and it seems like he really believes that he's better than everyone.

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I knew someone like this at Uni years ago. He was a total freak - he got top marks and he went on and on about how smart he was in one way or another. He was not insecure in his perception of his intelligence, he genuinely believed he was one of the super special geniuses. His personality was absolutely abhorrent - he alienated every one around him, including some VERY smart people he thought he was above.

 

I got to know him better because we caught the same train home, and I found out more about how he got to be so 'smart'. He did homework for 6 hours a night, and worked ALL weekend, with NO breaks. Absolute freak. When I found this out I realised that this was not about smarts, it was about life choices. I mean, my god, if I (or any one else) did all that work week after week we'd be getting 100% in our tests as well. Doesn't mean a thing, and, in fact, I felt sorry for this guy in the end.

 

I think this probably is about insecurity with your guy, but not the obvious kind. Perhaps he's had lots of pressure from parents about doing well (as I believe my friend did, it was a cultural thing as well), perhaps he can't 'define' himself any other way. One way of the other, the chances are that no one like him, he knows it, and he deserves your sympathy.

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i agree with you levy. my brother went to college and he isn't the most book-smart person i know, but damn he is one of the most intelligent people i know! he used to work for a couple years at a car manufacturing plant, then manufacturing at a computer company. he was making okay money. but a few years ago began a business in construction and renovations. he can provide for his family. he is a great role model i have as a brother. he can adapt very well to the world and everybody loves him as a person. intelligence isn't all about reading and research and theories...it's much, much more than that.

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WOW...thats EXACTLY like him. He does homework every single day (he says he likes it) and he works on the weekends. And you know what, I never saw this until you pointed it out, but you're right, he's probably like that because he can't "define" himself any other way. It makes sense now.

 

Oh and to add to how obsessed with himself he is, not only does he think he's incredibly smart, he also thinks he's incredibly good looking. I'll admit, by conventional standards he's a good looking guy, but I can rarely see past his ugly personality.

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i agree with you levy. my brother went to college and he isn't the most book-smart person i know' date=' but damn he is one of the most intelligent people i know! he used to work for a couple years at a car manufacturing plant, then manufacturing at a computer company. he was making okay money. but a few years ago began a business in construction and renovations. he can provide for his family. he is a great role model i have as a brother. he can adapt very well to the world and everybody loves him as a person. intelligence isn't all about reading and research and theories...it's much, much more than that.[/quote']

 

Thanks La,isla, and I totally agree with you. I once read that someone asked Einstein how many feet were in a mile. His reply was something along the lines of..."I don't know. Why should I fill my brain with facts I can find in 2 minutes in any standard reference book?". He said it was more important to use your mind to think than to use it as a warehouse for facts.

 

I find that this can apply for school as well. Its not university that determines whether your intelligent, its your mind and its ability to think.

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Thanks La,isla, and I totally agree with you. I once read that someone asked Einstein how many feet were in a mile. His reply was something along the lines of..."I don't know. Why should I fill my brain with facts I can find in 2 minutes in any standard reference book?". He said it was more important to use your mind to think than to use it as a warehouse for facts.

 

I find that this can apply for school as well. Its not university that determines whether your intelligent, its your mind and its ability to think.

 

That's a great point, and I agree. There are too many people out there who think that memorising things is a substitute for critical thought. I was seeing this guy years ago who remembered every tiny detail from every classical story, from speeches etc. I liked that about him, because he was a treasure trove of interesting stuff, and my brain only remembers important stuff like old Duran Duran song lyrics and the names of J Lo's ex-husbands. But then I realised he thought he was much smarter than me, and I took offense. All he did was spew this stuff out, often the same things over and over. Yeah, maybe he had a photographic memory, but while that's kind of cool, so what - my camera takes great photos but isn't going to win any Nobel prizes any time soon.

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how is doing homework 6 hrs a night + working on weekends = a freak? :S if you're smart enough to care about your grades, you're going to get a lot of opportunities. grades matter. if he's passionate about it, then good for him. he is a d-bag but... way to stereotype right back. it depends on majors too. i'm too lazy to do homework 6 hours a night but i probably should. there's always more stuff to learn... my ex was in engineering and you better believe he did homework hours on end.

 

 

intelligent people know that they will benefit if they give their absolute best to something. being half ass about things doesn't make you smarter. if he's really into it, then he's into it. and he is smart if he can study for that long. i know my brain isn't capable of studying for more than 2 hours at a time.

 

my other ex studied like crazy too. now he's an undergrad at uot, but is doing research with graduate students, working part-time at the sick kid's hospital. i wouldn't knock on studyinggg.

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I was not meaning to criticise people who study hard, but in my experience this guy was a freak. We were all doing science/engineering and no one, and I mean no one in the whole course did work like that. There just weren't that many hours of homework to even do. Do you know many people who would seriously do 6 hours a weeknight of study and then perhaps 24 hours study over a weekend, every week without fail? This was all study for the same five or so subjects we all did, at Year 12 and then first year uni level. He was not doing his own experiments, not writing a thesis, not learning another language, no extra curricular activities, he had no social life and it would seem, no life at all other than study. These hours he did were also on top of a full coursework schedule during Mon-Fri.

 

I would also debate that being able to study that long is a sign of intelligence. It is a sign of focus, yes, and ambition, no doubt. But like I said, I know Phds who could focus like this and they weren't actually smart. Just focussed and ambitious. These are not bad traits by any standard, but they are not synonymous with intelligence.

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^ yea i kind of agree with that..some people take their schooling way more seriously but that doesn't mean they're freaks about it...now his other behaviour might point to him being out of the norm because he was being a jerk about his intelligence, which is very tactless...

 

i myself don't have time for 6 hours of homework per night but i always do 3-4 hours a night and then do homework for most of the weekend..however i do get lots of breaks...it's just one of the things about school...studying!

 

there are different kind of intelligence - social skills (charisma), adaptive intelligence (street smarts), creativity (artistry or thinking outside of the box), emotional intelligence, intuitiveness (being able to envision the future), conventional intelligence (doing good on tests) and so on and so on....i personally think the most important thing is to be able to adapt to your surroundings.

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Just to clarify, I used the word freak in line with the definition below -

 

freak 1 (frk)

n.

1. A thing or occurrence that is markedly unusual or irregular: A freak of nature produced the midsummer snow.

 

My friend was this. No one I have ever known has ever managed to pull off a full day at Uni, then 6 hours a night and 12 hours per day on the weekend for every week of the year. Calling him a freak is not the same as saying all people who study hard are freaks.

 

I myself have studied hard, I've done the 3am finishes, I've worked full time and written a PhD thesis as well. But I did this in a more 'normal' sense of also making time to eat leisurely meals, watch occasional TV, see friends, walk the dog etc. None of which my old friend did.

 

Anyway, I won't comment again but I just want to avoid the apparent assumption people continue to make that I was saying that all people who work hard are wrong-headed or foolish.

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University grades ect is all a formality. I'd much prefer to see students learning something that spending hours and hour memorizing vague definitions to do with some abstract theory. I don't think being able to do that makes you 'smart'. The only real argument is that technical based studies do improve your problem solving abilities and liberal arts courses improve you communication skills. Which could be considered making a person smart.

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You misunderstood. We weren't knocking on studying. But not everyone has the time to study 6 hours a day AND work on the weekends. I don't even consider my co-worker smart to begin with and he probably doesn't even study as much as he lets on, he just wants everyone to think that he's smart.

 

Caring about your grades doesn't imply that your intelligent. Neither does being half assed and lazy imply that you're dumb. And neither does studying have anything to do with it. Its just reading and memorizing.

 

One my childhood friends is a highschool drop out, unemployed and doesn't do f-all with his life. But what people don't know is that he's a genius. He's seriously gifted with abstract thinking. You talk to him for like 2 minutes and you can tell right away that he's on some higher level of thinking.

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People who really heavily on education institutions to certify them I feel sorry for. They're so small minded and insecure they need a piece of paper to be able to say 'look at me see how good I am'. Doesn't make you smart. Education is just an institution. Nothing more.

 

don't really think it's "nothing more" than an institution. it can open your eyes to a lot of things, and open many doors to employment and the wider world. i highly value education, but i don't believe it is EVERYTHING.

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I had a similar debate recently with someone. We were talking about one of his guy friends who is very intelligent, 39 years old, who never went to college. My friend made a remark "if he was smart he'd have a degree" and that kind of flew all over me. I know many people who are very bright who just didn't have the means to go. Here he is touting that educated people are so 'smart' but he couldn't grasp the concept that we are all born with a capacity for knowledge and learning and that while college enhances and broadens our knowledge, it doesn't make us "smarter". IT makes us more knowledgeable but "smart", i.e. intelligence, is innate and the capacity for it does not change with the amount of schooling one has. Schooling can make one more learned, but not necessarily 'smarter' as in increase their ability to laern. Sure it can make our minds more active by using the brain mroe but it doesn't really do much for the intelligence capacity.

 

Many people have learned on their own in ways outside of university who stretched their knowledge just the same.

 

Another example is we have a friend who is an auto technician who was raised in the school of hard knocks, dropped out of highschool, but who was born with a natural innate technical ability that no one could ever aquire from school alone. The guy knows things that you would not expect a person who never finished high school to know, and you can give him anything, and i mean anything, and he can figure out not only how to fix it but how it works. He might not have traditional knowledge, but few people educated in a university could really say they could do what he does. And not only technical abiliity, he can also carry on a pretty high level philosophical conversation. To call him stupid beacuse of no degree would make the person calling him stupid appear very ignorant. Institutionalized learning is not for everyone but they can still have the same or higher IQ and/or capacity to learn than someone who went to collge. I went to college but this guy in question just has a higher knack for picking up new technical things that i do....so I know that college is not everything. Sure, i don't knock it and think it is important but know that not everyone has the option to go or just is not the type to do well in institutionalized learning.

 

I think your friend isn't learning as much in college as he thinks he is.

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