What sucks about being so smart?

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theta4
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What sucks about being so smart?

Postby theta4 » Wed Dec 16, 2009 1:37 am UTC

For me, it's the fact that EVERYBODY asks me for help, especially in physics. The day before a physics exam, it's "STUDY PARTY AT ALEX'S HOUSE!" I barely have enough time for my own work!

It also sucks that I'm in a lot of classes with seniors, and I'm only a junior. All of those seniors--with whom I am friends, mind you--will be leaving me at the end of this school year, and I will have to be all alone during my senior year.

The prospect of having so many job opportunities and being virtually recession-proof after college, though, is enough to make it worth it.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Innocent » Wed Dec 16, 2009 2:00 am UTC

Probably the worst thing about being incredibly intelligent is that it has a tendency to make you pretty arrogant as well. (Case in point: this topic). Get over this as quickly as possible and find it easy to make new friends after your current ones leave. Otherwise... well, people won't invite you to parties just because you helped them with their physics homework but have no other redeeming qualities.

Note that I'm not just teasing you about this topic, I'm also being serious. I'm someone who considers myself to be intelligent and who other people have accused of being pretentious. When these accusations stem from either anti-intellectualism or just the feeling that the things I think are interesting (politics, culture, philosophy) aren't fun to talk about I feel like I can safely ignore them. However, if they stem from a genuine resentment at me (or you) shoving my (or your) giant brain in everyone's face or actually looking down on people who I (or you) don't consider as intelligent, it's time for some reflection and conscious self-modification.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby theta4 » Wed Dec 16, 2009 2:23 am UTC

Well, like most things, it's what's commonly accepted that matters most. It just so happens that common knowledge associates my name with intelligence and, unfortunately, nothing else. It's always, "Alex? The one who 5'ed the calculus AP test?" or "Alex? The one who scored the 99th percentile on the PSAT's?" It's how people see me, and when people need help, they come to me. It sucks!
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby poxic » Wed Dec 16, 2009 2:51 am UTC

What's been said so far, plus the tendency to rely too much on thinking one's way through things. People are emotional animals. Reasoning comes second. If you avoid emotions or emotional processing, preferring to rely on your ability to reason your way through things, you will come across as distant and a bit alien.

You'll also be doing yourself a disfavour. Emotions need to be felt, understood, and allowed to pass. They are valuable information about what the non-rational parts of yourself are up to. Ignoring them builds a backlog that can cause a lot of trouble later on, emotionally and physically (health-wise).

If you've learned to balance emotion and reason in healthy ways, congrats. I never did, so I'm left with learning it later in life. (I'm also left with a bunch of health problems that were probably exacerbated, if not actually caused, by always living in my head.) I suspect the balance may be learned sooner when one's intellect isn't so easy to rely on for everything.

/end middle-aged musings
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby mmmcannibalism » Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:13 am UTC

I am a terrible narcissist who realizes exactly why I am a narcissist with no intention of changing it. Also, people assume you are arrogant even if you are trying not to be.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby poxic » Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:25 am UTC

Arrogance can be described as "assuming to already know, or to not need to know, what others have worked hard to know". If I work at, and achieve, a degree in engineering, I can safely assume that I know the basics of engineering. If I walk into my first job as an engineer and assume that I already know everything I will ever need to know, that makes me arrogant. I've assumed that I already know as much as there is to know in a large, complex, evolving field.

That's an easy example. In my own life, I've probably come across as arrogant many times in my career. I've gone through stages of assuming I didn't know enough, that I knew enough, and that I knew everything I needed to know about whatever project was at hand. As a rule, the projects that produced the best results were the ones where I assumed that I didn't know enough, and where I humbly asked for help with understanding from everyone else involved. That way, I didn't overlook things I hadn't considered, because I engaged the people who had considered them.

Post-posting edit: it's perhaps a failing of intelligence to assume that intelligence = knowledge, or even that studying = knowledge. I could be the smartest person in the world today, but if I haven't learned much about psychology, I will come across as ignorant when I try to argue about psychological principles. If I've won my diploma in engineering but have never designed for the electric requirements of an office tower, I will be talking out my ass if I try to argue office towers with people who have, in fact, done just that. Intelligence should humble itself before experience if it wants to really learn.
Last edited by poxic on Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:29 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby cv4 » Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:26 am UTC

theta4 wrote:Well, like most things, it's what's commonly accepted that matters most. It just so happens that common knowledge associates my name with intelligence and, unfortunately, nothing else. It's always, "Alex? The one who 5'ed the calculus AP test?" or "Alex? The one who scored the 99th percentile on the PSAT's?" It's how people see me, and when people need help, they come to me. It sucks!


You clearly don't dislike it that much. If they really are your friends, you should be happy to help them learn and acquire knowledge and if they aren't really your friends you are either a) being used and don't notice it, making you not that smart or b) you help them anyway because you like being smarter than them. If you really hated it, you wouldn't help people. Plain and simple. While you dislike having to help the person, you do it because it inflates your intellectual ego. It is pretty apparent based on both of your posts in this thread that you do indeed like being smart and you seemingly like to let people know you are, as seen in the quote above. Most people who really are that smart and don't want people to know don't really flaunt it. If I were in your shoes and I didn't want my friends to think I was that smart, they wouldn't even know that I was in the 99th Percentile on the PSAT's. That is information you apparently shared. You let people know you are smart, then expect them to not ask for help.

Also, you're in high school. It's not difficult. Wait until you get to university when you may be needing the help from someone else.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:38 am UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:I am a terrible narcissist who realizes exactly why I am a narcissist with no intention of changing it. Also, people assume you are arrogant even if you are trying not to be.

–noun
1. inordinate fascination with oneself; excessive self-love; vanity.

Might want to get that looked at. To be sure, there's a pleasant, exuberant feeling from going around realizing how awesome you feel yourself to be. This doesn't have to be narcissism--I think in its healthiest form it's more of an exalted contentment. Know who you are/can be, be that person, and enjoy it. But don't always be looking inwards.

Personally, I'm a bit of a loner at high school, a symptom of making older friends who have mainly graduated or whom I only see on weekends. And, like you, I did well on PSATs (couldn't quote a percentile, but, eh, National Merit Scholar Semifinalist?) and got a 5 on AP Calc BC. I say these not to brag, but so you can relate to me somewhat.

And, like you, I get questions from people, requests for help. I give it willingly, because the fact is that sitting around understanding something is worth pretty much nothing. Imagine Einstein saying "Well, guys, I figured out this really cool thing. Basically the speed of light is always constant. I'm sure you can work out the rest yourselves, I understand it perfectly." As was said above, don't do it just to satisfy your intellectual ego. Do it because you have something to offer, although don't let yourself get taken advantage of.

Among people who are really my friends--as opposed to the host of acquaintances that make up most of my chronological peers--my intelligence is not that big of a deal. Yeah, we'll discuss things, and people will pay me compliments when I talk about college admissions or how things are going for me academically, but that's not who I am to them because intelligence is a useful tool and an awful identity. We'd rather discuss tabletop games, movies, cats, roommates, and anything and everything else.

This turned into a random rant about me, it seems, which I didn't intend. Perhaps I'm the narcissistic one now?
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Secateurs » Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:50 am UTC

Innocent wrote:Probably the worst thing about being incredibly intelligent is that it has a tendency to make you pretty arrogant as well. (Case in point: this topic). Get over this as quickly as possible and find it easy to make new friends after your current ones leave. Otherwise... well, people won't invite you to parties just because you helped them with their physics homework but have no other redeeming qualities.

Note that I'm not just teasing you about this topic, I'm also being serious. I'm someone who considers myself to be intelligent and who other people have accused of being pretentious. When these accusations stem from either anti-intellectualism or just the feeling that the things I think are interesting (politics, culture, philosophy) aren't fun to talk about I feel like I can safely ignore them. However, if they stem from a genuine resentment at me (or you) shoving my (or your) giant brain in everyone's face or actually looking down on people who I (or you) don't consider as intelligent, it's time for some reflection and conscious self-modification.

This, definitely. I try not to be arrogant, but occasionally I'll say stuff without thinking that makes me seem that way. The best thing to do is remember that no one is born ridiculously smart (I bet that someone will come along with something to disprove me here), and it comes down to you putting in the hard work in the end.
On the point of other people asking you questions - yeah, it's annoying if you're busy, but try and look at it in a different light. It's helping you study at the same time. Being able to explain how problems can be solved to people is pretty essential in the real world, and no physics exam will be complete without a couple of lengthy explanations. Plus, it sets you up to do tutoring later on and earn money ;) But apart from all of that, I know that (for me at least) the thanks of my friends are worth it.
theta4 wrote:The prospect of having so many job opportunities and being virtually recession-proof after college, though, is enough to make it worth it.
May I ask what it is that makes you so sure of this? No sarcasm intended, at all, I'm just curious.

Also, on Sir_Elderberry's point, true friends will recognise that you have other qualities, besides intelligence, who define who you are, as well as other interests with which you can relate to them. I'd say that if you haven't started trying to make friends of your own age, it's worth trying to start now. Sure, outside of school you can still see your senior friends, but it's nice to have people around you during school who you can chat with (about things other than school, of course) and sit with during breaks. (Disclaimer: not from USA, so I have no idea how the schooling system works)
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Velict » Wed Dec 16, 2009 5:39 am UTC

I hate the expectations that come with natural ability. I'm categorized as "the smart kid," so I'm expected to ace every test, know every answer to the most random of questions, and get into the best colleges. I'm not allowed to make the sort of errors that anyone else can make. I'm reminded of a Calvin and Hobbes comic, where he rejoices upon getting a 'C' grade on a test, remarking that (and I loosely paraphrase here) "life is easier the less people expect of you." I can really sympathize with poor Calvin; as someone who has done well by the standards of contemporary society, life is very emotionally demanding.

And then, of course, there's the realization that no matter how talented you are, someone is always better, smarter, more successful. I have worked fairly hard in my senior mathematics class this year (math having always been my Achilles' heel), only to see the two freshman in our class sit back, do nothing, and make a 100 in the class. College will be even worse for me with regard to this, I expect. Particularly if I do get admitted to any of the more prestigious schools.

cv4 wrote: If I were in your shoes and I didn't want my friends to think I was that smart, they wouldn't even know that I was in the 99th Percentile on the PSAT's. That is information you apparently shared. You let people know you are smart, then expect them to not ask for help.


In my experience, it is often difficult to conceal or avoid "flaunting" personality or character traits, including "intelligence." I've encountered some degree of grief myself over the years, largely, I think, because of my personality. I'm an ENTJ; I can't avoid speaking up during class, or asserting my view on some particular subject. I can't say that people would know my PSAT scores (that information, specifically, has remained between myself and a few of my friends), but at least some aspects of my character will inevitably leak through. Perhaps such dynamism stems from feelings of insecurity, inadequacy, or arrogance, but I for one am unable to restrain it. Perhaps someone who is more introverted, or reserved, would be able to do so easier.

Also, you're in high school. It's not difficult. Wait until you get to university when you may be needing the help from someone else.


I have mixed feelings about this, as a high school senior. High school may not be challenging in terms of concepts or ideas, but there's a lot of work to be found. It's a different sort of difficulty, perhaps.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby MiB24601 » Wed Dec 16, 2009 6:37 am UTC

Most of the problems that seem to be correlated with "being smart" don't actually seem to be caused by "being smart." Rather, these problems are caused by poor interpersonal skills.* But, speaking as a person with poor interpersonal skills, let me just say that doesn't make the problems any less real.

* A Neal Stephenson quote I like about this is ""Talent was not rare; the ability to survive having it was."

theta4 wrote:The prospect of having so many job opportunities and being virtually recession-proof after college, though, is enough to make it worth it.


Oh, if only this were true.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby notzeb » Wed Dec 16, 2009 7:25 am UTC

theta4 wrote:For me, it's the fact that EVERYBODY asks me for help, especially in physics. The day before a physics exam, it's "STUDY PARTY AT ALEX'S HOUSE!" I barely have enough time for my own work!
You say that like it's a bad thing. You see, this year I had a wonderful plan to learn all of mathematics: I would take all of the hard classes, while my friends took all of the easy classes. They would get stuck on the hard problems in their homeworks, come to me for help, and I would get the benefit of solving just the hard problems from all of the classes I wasn't taking! This worked wonderfully for the first three weeks of the term: I was learning the intricacies of model theory, point set topology, Hilbert spaces, and finite group theory without taking any of those classes!

But then tragedy struck. A little before midterms, I noticed that my friends no longer came to me for homework help. To my dismay, I had inadvertently fallen behind on these subjects. I asked one of my friends what happened; were the problems getting easier? No - my friends had simply come to the conclusion that asking me for help was the same as asking the TA for help, and everyone knows that if you go through life asking the TA for help every time you get stuck, you never learn yourself.

Another problem with being the smartest man on earth: occasionally, someone would give me a problem that was incredibly easy if you used a certain trick (often one they had learned in class). However, even the cleverest man alive can miss a simple trick, and upon seeing that I pondered the question for more than a minute, the person posing the problem would come to the conclusion that the problem was as difficult as he thought it was. This was especially tragic when the problem had a two line solution (as I often realized five minutes after the conversation came to an end).

Other than those, I haven't noticed any other problems. Some people say that having a big ego can be a problem, I guess, but I've never been affected by that, so I wouldn't know.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby sje46 » Wed Dec 16, 2009 7:55 am UTC

What sucks the most is when the majority of you, the simpleton public, fail to recognize the genius of my avant-garde kazoo concertos.

Also, when people say you're smart, when you're really not that smart. Maybe I am smart, and I like to think I have common sense, if not much mental health. My dad always told me that I was going to go to Harvard, and become president or whatever. Gah. I'm a B student. I don't do my homework, or study. I'm smart, sure, but that doesn't make me write papers. In fact, I skip papers sometimes because I don't want to risk my esteem by dealing with the fact that I'm not competent enough to do it. Intelligence may get you far, but you'll get nowhere in life if you don't have any motivation. And if you place all your self-worth in something you may not have, you'd do anything to protect it, even if it ruins you in other ways. Instead of getting a C on a paper you tried hard on, you get an F for a paper you didn't write, but you can still say "I might have gotten an A, if I tried."

This is what labeling children as "the smart ones" does. It ruins them.

I do think, however, with lack of creativity and some organizational problems in my head aside, you can't really be intelligent if you don't recognize your own limits.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Wed Dec 16, 2009 1:05 pm UTC

To the OP: we're not trying to be hostile here. We've just seen people and threads like this before. Many of us have been people like this before. So it's meant to be advice, not an attack.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Kurushimi » Wed Dec 16, 2009 1:17 pm UTC

I'm not really sure why you posted this topic like this. I mean, you must've expected the kind of reception you're getting right now. Not a lot of it is positive.

I won't repeat what everyone else has said. Though, I will say you should listen to it. Lest you come off as arrogant, and it's hard getting people to like you if you do. Unless you just don't like people. Then, you really need to kick it up a notch. If you play your cards right, I bet you could be friendless by the end of the week.

Though, I do understand where you're coming from. I honestly hate helping my family members with math problems but they keep coming for it. The only thing I can say is try and deal with it. Yes, it'll be irritating, but it's not the worst that could happen. They could be not asking you for help.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby cv4 » Wed Dec 16, 2009 2:24 pm UTC

Velict wrote:
cv4 wrote: If I were in your shoes and I didn't want my friends to think I was that smart, they wouldn't even know that I was in the 99th Percentile on the PSAT's. That is information you apparently shared. You let people know you are smart, then expect them to not ask for help.


In my experience, it is often difficult to conceal or avoid "flaunting" personality or character traits, including "intelligence." I've encountered some degree of grief myself over the years, largely, I think, because of my personality. I'm an ENTJ; I can't avoid speaking up during class, or asserting my view on some particular subject. I can't say that people would know my PSAT scores (that information, specifically, has remained between myself and a few of my friends), but at least some aspects of my character will inevitably leak through. Perhaps such dynamism stems from feelings of insecurity, inadequacy, or arrogance, but I for one am unable to restrain it. Perhaps someone who is more introverted, or reserved, would be able to do so easier.

Also, you're in high school. It's not difficult. Wait until you get to university when you may be needing the help from someone else.


I have mixed feelings about this, as a high school senior. High school may not be challenging in terms of concepts or ideas, but there's a lot of work to be found. It's a different sort of difficulty, perhaps.


I reply to both of your quotes of me.

1) There is a difference between not concealing your intelligence and flaunting it. I went through much of the same things in high school as most people have posted here. I was smart, I did well, people asked me for help, and if I wanted to, I would help them. But I never flaunted intelligence. I never made sure people knew what I got on tests. I never tossed my report cards around so people could see my average was better than theirs. There is a difference between being intelligent and realizing it doesn't mean you are better than the person (this could be argued at a higher level, but for high school, this is the truth) and the OP who seems to feel that his intelligence means he is above everyone else and lets it be known.

2) Your comment about university not being different. It is. I've did all the hardest classes in high school. I'm in Mechanical Engineering now (3rd year). It is significantly different. In High School, you can get by without trying hard at all. In university, you can do that in some stuff, but you will have no where near the success as in high school. At my school, 300 freshman enter engineering every year. 50 fail out/drop out in the first year. Another 50 along the rest of the way. 100/300 kids who had the marks to get in to engineering couldn't do it. Also, you are a high school senior. You couldn't really appreciate the difference until you are there.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby notzeb » Thu Dec 17, 2009 12:01 am UTC

sje46 wrote:This is what labeling children as "the smart ones" does. It ruins them.
Actually, it sounds to me like you are just making excuses here. I might as well say, "I am only a failure because once while I was five years old my mother gave me a toy car that turned into another car when you turned it upside down and I decided to live my life upside down ever since." But real men don't make excuses (or have any reason to make excuses, for that matter). In fact, other than the fact that it's hard to digest food while standing on your head, I'd say my life has been positively impacted by my decision! I mean, how many people do you know who can type with one hand while balancing their entire body on the other?
sje46 wrote:I do think, however, with lack of creativity and some organizational problems in my head aside, you can't really be intelligent if you don't recognize your own limits.
Recognizing limits is for people who have been defeated by life! Let me ask you, did Euler recognize his limits and stop publishing papers just because he was working at an inhuman rate? Did Erdos get a job? Did Obama say to himself, "hmm, maybe I should give up since everyone knows it's impossible for me to become president in this country anyways"? Did Hitler give up on killing off an entire culture?

Sje, I have come to a single conclusion from your post: you are a giver-upper. However, you do have some good points mixed in as well - I too am annoyed when someone calls me smart for an action that does not deserve the praise. For instance, someone says, "I know that x = 0.1 radians, and tan x / tan y = 1/2, but I can't figure out what cos y is..." and I guess that cos y is about 0.98, causing someone - who knows me only through this one interaction - to call me a supergenius. If this was all it took to be a supergenius... I am sure the rest of the supergenius/aspiring supergenius community takes this as an unforgivable insult as well.

The purpose of this thread was to be a poorly disguised bragging contest, right? Because I totally think I'm winning, but no one seems to be keeping score.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Thu Dec 17, 2009 12:13 am UTC

did Euler recognize his limits

He wouldn't be much of a mathematician if he didn't recognize limits.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Kurushimi » Thu Dec 17, 2009 12:25 am UTC

Sir_Elderberry wrote:
did Euler recognize his limits

He wouldn't be much of a mathematician if he didn't recognize limits.


I think you win.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Lithium33 » Thu Dec 17, 2009 1:18 am UTC

I'm one of those smart lazy people. I simply don't like working on things, I get easily distracted and procrastinate a lot. I don't really know what this "motivation" thing is, or how to make it work. I guess I flaunt my smartness, thinking about it. I get overwhelming amounts of praise (and tut-tutting) from the kids in my AP classes, especially the academic oriented ones. Some one said no one was born smart. Well, I was definitely bored with a mind that retains facts and ideas. I've basically cruised so far through HS (I'm a senior).

It's hard not to flaunt it sometimes. Like in my AP Government class, whenever the teacher asks a question, I usually know the answer. So I answer it. I've never been one embarrassed to answer questions. I like discussing ideas and such with my teachers, like my AP English teacher. My "intelligence" is basically the only thing I have going for me as a positive, so I'm not exactly sure what I should do. I don't really understand why I was born with this gift. It is ridiculous to me, I've answered questions during class and such that no one else knows the answer to, and they look at me like I'm Einstein or something.

I guess this whole thing is flaunting too, letting the world know I'm smart.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby sje46 » Thu Dec 17, 2009 2:11 am UTC

notzeb wrote:
sje46 wrote:This is what labeling children as "the smart ones" does. It ruins them.
Actually, it sounds to me like you are just making excuses here. I might as well say, "I am only a failure because once while I was five years old my mother gave me a toy car that turned into another car when you turned it upside down and I decided to live my life upside down ever since." But real men don't make excuses (or have any reason to make excuses, for that matter). In fact, other than the fact that it's hard to digest food while standing on your head, I'd say my life has been positively impacted by my decision! I mean, how many people do you know who can type with one hand while balancing their entire body on the other?
sje46 wrote:I do think, however, with lack of creativity and some organizational problems in my head aside, you can't really be intelligent if you don't recognize your own limits.
Recognizing limits is for people who have been defeated by life! Let me ask you, did Euler recognize his limits and stop publishing papers just because he was working at an inhuman rate? Did Erdos get a job? Did Obama say to himself, "hmm, maybe I should give up since everyone knows it's impossible for me to become president in this country anyways"? Did Hitler give up on killing off an entire culture?

Sje, I have come to a single conclusion from your post: you are a giver-upper. However, you do have some good points mixed in as well - I too am annoyed when someone calls me smart for an action that does not deserve the praise. For instance, someone says, "I know that x = 0.1 radians, and tan x / tan y = 1/2, but I can't figure out what cos y is..." and I guess that cos y is about 0.98, causing someone - who knows me only through this one interaction - to call me a supergenius. If this was all it took to be a supergenius... I am sure the rest of the supergenius/aspiring supergenius community takes this as an unforgivable insult as well.

The purpose of this thread was to be a poorly disguised bragging contest, right? Because I totally think I'm winning, but no one seems to be keeping score.

I didn't say my life is a failure. It isn't. I'm going to college and am going to be successful. And it's not that I'm blaming my parents...wait, yes, I am, because how you are brought up has a HUGE influence on how you will become. If you inflate your child's self esteem, telling him that he will become president of the united states, he will cure cancer, and all that crap, he will feel incredible pressure to do something that isn't likely. Instead, you should tell your kid to be a hard worker. Because you simply can't just make a kid intelligent by telling him he is. The only thing that will make him is stressed out.

When I talk about recognizing where your limits are, I mean just that. Knowing what is and isn't possible for you to do. Obama had the ability to become president, and he knew it. That's why he ran. I don't have the ability to, say, translate a book from English into Spanish (a language I only kinda know), thinking "When I'm done this, I will be practically fluid in SPanish!", because I will only end up writing 2 pages. If I attempt such a task now, I am only going to set myself up for a lot of stress and disappointment. Or writing a 10 page paper in a night is pretty much impossible. Or driving home drunk after 12 beers. So, yes. Recognizing your own limits is a very good thing. This isn't saying don't follow your dreams...this is saying don't set up impossible dreams for yourself or your children, and be content with what you have, not with being a millionaire or being in Mensa, or whatever.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Ralith The Third » Thu Dec 17, 2009 2:45 am UTC

There are definitely problems whenever you screw up, if you aren't careful. If you're annoyed by having people ask you for help there's that...
Oh, and...
Spoiler:
Not getting laid.

Seriously.

I'm friends with every single chick at my school.

But I'm never going to get laid.

Stupid friend zone.

Damnit.
Omni.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Thu Dec 17, 2009 3:08 am UTC

That's not a symptom of intelligence, really. No offense--I have a similar situation--but it comes from something else. I'm close friends with the valedictorian from two years. His life is like that character on every sitcom who gets obscene amounts of sex. Like, he isn't as cool, but his sex life is Barney from How I Met Your Mother. Personally, my problem is being straight-up overly cautious.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Innocent » Thu Dec 17, 2009 5:23 am UTC

Velict wrote:
Also, you're in high school. It's not difficult. Wait until you get to university when you may be needing the help from someone else.


I have mixed feelings about this, as a high school senior. High school may not be challenging in terms of concepts or ideas, but there's a lot of work to be found. It's a different sort of difficulty, perhaps.


It depends a lot on what high school you went to and what college you're going to, but in general, in highschool if you could write a five page paper on every major concept covered in a given class, you were so fucking golden for that class. You'd have the easiest A ever and your sexy essay writing skills would allow you to seduce your hot teacher. In college, if you can write a five page paper on every major concept covered in a given class, you could pass that class. Probably. If they were good papers. I was lucky enough to have written lots of five page papers (and several ten page papers and even one 25 page paper) in high school so I was pretty well prepared to deal with the whole idea of exploring concepts in depth and proving you understand it better than well enough to cough up the correct answer all over your test paper, but there were plenty of people who weren't. They had to learn quick.

Ralith The Third wrote:
Spoiler:
Not getting laid.

Seriously.

I'm friends with every single chick at my school.

But I'm never going to get laid.

Stupid friend zone.

Damnit.


Heh, that correlates with high IQ pretty well I suspect but it doesn't have anything to do with intelligence. I mean, that was pretty much me in high school but I went to a school for smart kids and all my friends were smart kids and plenty of them got laid. Man, if I could do it all over knowing what I do now... but hey, I'm still young and college women are the best. :D Also, Ralith, I bet at least a few of your friends have silly crushes on you. You just need to figure out who and when and decide the optimal moment to talk with them and suggest grabbing a bite to eat. This post had objectionable content.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby sje46 » Thu Dec 17, 2009 5:35 am UTC

This post had objectionable content. Edited to remove references to inappropriate content.
ಠ_ಠ
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Innocent » Thu Dec 17, 2009 6:25 am UTC

sje46 wrote:This post had objectionable content.And again.
ಠ_ಠ


...ProTip #2: don't make that face at them. Ever.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby notzeb » Thu Dec 17, 2009 7:01 am UTC

Ok sje, I was going to take back everything I said after your insightful post*. Then...
sje46 wrote:...being in Mensa...
.................................

This is an impossible goal that we should give up hope on achieving? As hard as being a millionaire? An unattainable dream?

*Ok, not really. I actually completely disagree with it** on a fundamental level, but I can see your side of the argument.

**You are probably right about knowing your limits, actually, but people usually tell you to do that when they think they know your limits better than you do.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby +ranslucent » Thu Dec 17, 2009 7:56 am UTC

notzeb wrote:Ok sje, I was going to take back everything I said after your insightful post*. Then...
sje46 wrote:...being in Mensa...
.................................

This is an impossible goal that we should give up hope on achieving? As hard as being a millionaire? An unattainable dream?


Mensa isn't all it's cracked up to be, I've found. Full of old people. :P The magazines are fun to read though. Anybody here in Mensa Australia?

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby ThomasS » Thu Dec 17, 2009 9:09 am UTC

The big burly high school football player who spends time comparing his strength to the smaller kids in class tends to become and to be seen as a bully. He also tends to be very stagnant. Instead he should be comparing himself to the even better college and pro football players. He should try to understand and narrow the differences between himself and them.

When the big burly football player is asked to help move piano, of course he can go to help. He can and probably should use his strength to help his friends. But he shouldn't feel obligated if he doesn't have time, or if they aren't friends. But above all, he shouldn't confuse piano moving with actual training

I'm sorry, what was your question again?

P.S. Mensa is basically a support group for smart people in need of intellectual stimulation. If you are in school or academia you shouldn't really need it, but then we get in to a big "quality of schools today" discussion.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby sje46 » Thu Dec 17, 2009 9:19 am UTC

Yes, it is impossible to get into Mensa if you're not smart enough. Unless you cheat on the IQ test. But that wasn't my point anyways...my point is to not focus on shallow things like how much money you have in your wallet or what elitist clubs you're a part of.
Innocent wrote:
sje46 wrote:This post had objectionable content. Rape jokes aren't funny.
ಠ_ಠ


...ProTip #2: don't make that face at them. Ever.
I did it at you, so-called genius, for making a rape joke, implying that all you need to get laid is to get girls so intoxicated they can no longer make an informed choice whether or not they have sex.

notzeb wrote:**You are probably right about knowing your limits, actually, but people usually tell you to do that when they think they know your limits better than you do.
I'm not talking about other people. I'm talking about you. Don't listen to me...I can't know you as well as you can.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Ixtellor » Thu Dec 17, 2009 2:41 pm UTC

Replying stictly to the OP question:

The only thing I have noticed of "what can suck about being so smart" is that you might find it harder to be happy in life.
Dumb people can have a happy life that revolves around watching TV and renting movies.

A smart person is going to require more than that, and in some cases might have trouble discovering wth it is that makes them happy, or discover that what makes them happy is out of their reach, or they can't get enough of it to lead a satisfying life.

My wife for example is uber smart, and what makes her happiest in the world is intelligent conversation. Over the years this has caused problems as people she really loves have been unable to fill that need. She has slowly discovered that her mother, who is her best friend, is in a downward spiral where she wants to discuss tabloid stories and basically lost interesting in 'higher' topics. She gets frustrated with me because she will want to discuss something she is excited about like some philosophical question, new book, political goings on, etc and I am trying to watch a football game or am on the computer running an Instance in WoW. She basically has an insatible thirst for learning and then reflecting on, discussing that new material and if she can't find someone to do this with immediatly she is... er not happy at that moment.

Not sure if other smart people encounter this, but I have noticed it amoung a variety of smart people.


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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby wst » Thu Dec 17, 2009 4:28 pm UTC

The thing that sucks about *Actually* being smart and successful in your field, is that you make bigger fuckups.

Example: Einstein. Cosmological Constant. 'nuff said.
Anything I said pre-2014 that you want to quote me on, just run it past me to check I still agree with myself.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby achan1058 » Thu Dec 17, 2009 4:57 pm UTC

Innocent wrote:It depends a lot on what high school you went to and what college you're going to, but in general, in highschool if you could write a five page paper on every major concept covered in a given class, you were so fucking golden for that class. You'd have the easiest A ever and your sexy essay writing skills would allow you to seduce your hot teacher. In college, if you can write a five page paper on every major concept covered in a given class, you could pass that class. Probably. If they were good papers. I was lucky enough to have written lots of five page papers (and several ten page papers and even one 25 page paper) in high school so I was pretty well prepared to deal with the whole idea of exploring concepts in depth and proving you understand it better than well enough to cough up the correct answer all over your test paper, but there were plenty of people who weren't. They had to learn quick.
I thought it is the other way around. If you can summarize the course into 2 pages, then you are golden. At least, that's how it works for math and science courses. I hardly need to write any papers, and the times I do, I am more worried about it being too long rather than too short.

And to the OP: If the pond you are swimming in is not big enough, swim in the ocean with sharks.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Vieto » Thu Dec 17, 2009 5:30 pm UTC

wst wrote:The thing that sucks about *Actually* being smart and successful in your field, is that you make bigger fuckups.

Example: Einstein. Cosmological Constant. 'nuff said.


Didn't that turn out to actually be important again? What with dark energy and all?

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby wst » Thu Dec 17, 2009 5:56 pm UTC

Vieto wrote:
wst wrote:The thing that sucks about *Actually* being smart and successful in your field, is that you make bigger fuckups.

Example: Einstein. Cosmological Constant. 'nuff said.
Didn't that turn out to actually be important again? What with dark energy and all?
Not really, he broke every scientific principle in coming up with the cosmological constant. That was his epic fuckup.
Anything I said pre-2014 that you want to quote me on, just run it past me to check I still agree with myself.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Chen » Thu Dec 17, 2009 6:40 pm UTC

wst wrote:The thing that sucks about *Actually* being smart and successful in your field, is that you make bigger fuckups.

Example: Einstein. Cosmological Constant. 'nuff said.


Bigger fuckups than who? The dumber people in your field? Because I'm fairly certain thats not the case, in general.

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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby sje46 » Thu Dec 17, 2009 6:43 pm UTC

I heard Einstein didn't even learn how to read until he was 9. Clearly he was a failure of a scientist.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby wst » Thu Dec 17, 2009 7:22 pm UTC

Chen wrote:Bigger fuckups than who? The dumber people in your field? Because I'm fairly certain thats not the case, in general.
If you're working at the forefront of something, you're right at the pinnacle of whatever you're doing. If you mess up, you have further to fall, as there are few people able to keep abreast of what you're doing that can point out where you're going horribly wrong. The stuff you do 'low down' has been done before by others, and they can say 'no, it works like this' as you start to go wrong, rather than when you're incontrovertibly up shit creek.

tl;dr: There are very few people above you who can say 'nah, tried that, didn't work' when you're at the top, so mistakes happen for longer. Then they're found. And they're bigger, thanks to time...
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Thu Dec 17, 2009 10:33 pm UTC

sje46 wrote:I heard Einstein didn't even learn how to read until he was 9. Clearly he was a failure of a scientist.

Not true. According to the biography of Einstein I read, most of the urban legends about him being a failure as a child are...urban legends. (Although he did fail one physics class in college for never showing up. I'd love to be the professor who failed Einstein.) I do think he was a late speaker, though.
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Re: What sucks about being so smart?

Postby Innocent » Sat Dec 19, 2009 6:28 am UTC

sje46 wrote:
Innocent wrote:
sje46 wrote:
This post had objectionable content.


ಠ_ಠ


...ProTip #2: don't make that face at them. Ever.
I did it at you, so-called genius, for making a rape joke, implying that all you need to get laid is to get girls so intoxicated they can no longer make an informed choice whether or not they have sex.


First of all, I don't think I implied it, I stated it outright.

Second of all...

What the hell do I have to do?? Slap you across the face with emoticons? Post a picture of my face contorted into an expression of exaggerated hilarity? Use the irony mark? Bracket my statements with giant HAY GUISE IM JST JOKIN K tags? Use fake HTML? <sarcasm>Oh my! Your rebuke against my horrifying statement has made me rethink my immoral ways!</sarcasm> Or is it not enough to make a ridiculous statement in the context of a ridiculous post (note that this is the same post where I claimed that doing extra work for a high school class would result in you seducing your teacher; I don't see anyone calling me out for that one) and expect people to understand it as tongue-in-cheek? Get off your high horse. There's no moralizing to do here.

Seducing your teacher jokes really aren't that funny either, but rape jokes are simply not tolerated on these fora. If you have a problem with that, please seek out a different forum. -kira


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