Author Topic: As a socially awkward engineer.....  (Read 13393 times)

Giro

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As a socially awkward engineer.....
« on: May 07, 2015, 09:42:06 AM »
I've never really understood the unspoken rules and the improper "humble brags" that I'm learning about on this board.  I was actually accused of a humble brag recently so I'm trying to figure it out.  My problem is that in real life, I am fine because people can read my gestures, tone of voice and facial expressions.  When I post things, I think I'm too direct or something. 

The rules seem to be.....

Okay to complain about your job
Okay to post about your weight loss journey.  as long as you are overweight.
Okay to post % of savings i.e. saved 70% of my income last month.  high five, way to go

Not okay to discuss your fitness or diet if you are in good shape
Not okay to discuss net worth if it's more than someone else
Not okay to discuss any luxuries

So, is it basically that you can post anything as long as it isn't perceived as better than what someone else is doing? 

just sorta thinking out loud over this. 

MgoSam

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2015, 10:01:05 AM »
Hey,

I don't really understand the rules, but I think the rules about pornography apply as well...'you know it when you see it.'

For instance, if someone says, "I hate that my car needs more gas than the dealership listing," that isn't a humblebrag, though of course the vast majority of humans on Earth would love to have a car to get around...many don't even have bicycles. Now if someone said, "I hate that my Veyron has terrible gas mileage," I think that most people would say STFU.

MgoSam

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2015, 10:04:15 AM »
What I mean to say is that you can definitely post anything you want, but how people take it might be different.

For instance, it is perfectly ok to post about your circumstances, health, net worth, ect, but of course, people may question your motives or judge you. Let's say that I made ___ amount of money, and this amount is way above what my friends make. If I post something on FB along the lines of, "The problem with making $____ is that you have to pay a ton of taxes," I would get slaughtered by them and rightfully so. But if I said something like, "Thankfully for frugal living and saving 70% of income as now I can leave the corporate treadmill and pursue my passion for ___," that would likely be perfectly ok. In fact, friends might ask for advice on their own finances.

But of course, consider that anything you say might be faced with hostility from complainypants. That just comes with the territory.

BlueHouse

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2015, 10:04:52 AM »
I think you're about right, Giro.  I definitely notice when it comes to weight, finances, or anything else sensitive, it's better to just keep your mouth shut if you have your sh1t together.  Otherwise, people resent the hell out of you.  :( 
That's why these forums work I think.

LalsConstant

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2015, 10:14:25 AM »
Okay I will take a crack at it by way of example.  I will use your weight loss example.  At 217 pounds I am overweight for a 5'10" male.  However I have lost 116 pounds in the past nine months.  Not making this part up I am bragging outright.

I am not humble bragging however because I am being genuine about the context.  Now let us say a hypothetical douchebag comes along, sees this, and says: "Yeah it's tough to get in shape, I could barely run that marathon last weekend, and I have gained three pounds this year I need to be more like you bro."  Assume for sake of argument he is telling the truth.

The difference here is that douchebag is being disingenuous about the context, he is not sharing a problem he has overcome, rather he is taking my example of a serious medical problem, framing it as a context for his high level of fitness ability, and is basically laughing at me and saying "that's cute".

If he were to just outright say "Dude you are pathetic that's nothing I do Iron man every day do a real workout you lazy eastward" people would resent him for trying to overtly make himself look better at my expense.  Instead he tries to frame it as humility in a disingenuous way to  both make himself look better than me and avoid criticism for not punching in his own weight class, so to speak.

A lot of humblebrag is perception, but it's basically being pretentious and presenting  something favorable as a problem to demean the accomplishments status or problems of others.

A more clear example would be that one guy you know who complains about women hitting on him.  That's a more clear example of.humblebrag.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2015, 10:18:56 AM by LalsConstant »

James

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2015, 10:18:19 AM »
I've never really understood the unspoken rules and the improper "humble brags" that I'm learning about on this board.  I was actually accused of a humble brag recently so I'm trying to figure it out.  My problem is that in real life, I am fine because people can read my gestures, tone of voice and facial expressions.  When I post things, I think I'm too direct or something. 

The rules seem to be.....

Okay to complain about your job
Okay to post about your weight loss journey.  as long as you are overweight.
Okay to post % of savings i.e. saved 70% of my income last month.  high five, way to go

Not okay to discuss your fitness or diet if you are in good shape
Not okay to discuss net worth if it's more than someone else
Not okay to discuss any luxuries

So, is it basically that you can post anything as long as it isn't perceived as better than what someone else is doing? 

just sorta thinking out loud over this.

I disagree.

When you say "Not okay to discuss your fitness or diet if you are in good shape", the point is not for you to avoid the fitness or diet discussion, but just skip the brag about being in good shape. Just talk about fitness and diet and leave your "good shape" alone unless it is somehow important to the discussion.

When you say "Not okay to discuss net worth if it's more than someone else", how do you know if it's more than someone else? It's not a race, if you have a reason to discuss your net worth than focus on that and nobody will care. There are lots of comments about net worth on here that don't cause issues, not sure why yours would.

When you say "Not okay to discuss any luxuries", that is just pure bull shit. MMM discusses luxuries all the time. There may be issues with how you are discussing it, but the discussion of luxuries is a common occurrence around here and on the blog.

If you are having problems avoiding humble bragging we are happy to help. First start by spending some time reading on the internet about humble bragging, so you fully understand the concept. If you still can't see when you are doing it, then ask for more specific help. But making a list of rules about what you can't discuss is not the solution.

Hey It's Me

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2015, 10:20:56 AM »

The difference here is that douchebag is being disingenuous about the context, he is not sharing a problem he has overcome, rather he is taking my example of a serious medical problem, framing it as a context for his high level of fitness ability, and is basically laughing at me and saying "that's cute".

I still don't get it. I understand instinctively, that in the example you listed Mr. Douche should have kept his mouth shut, but I can't quite put my finger on why.

LalsConstant

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2015, 10:26:49 AM »

The difference here is that douchebag is being disingenuous about the context, he is not sharing a problem he has overcome, rather he is taking my example of a serious medical problem, framing it as a context for his high level of fitness ability, and is basically laughing at me and saying "that's cute".

I still don't get it. I understand instinctively, that in the example you listed Mr. Douche should have kept his mouth shut, but I can't quite put my finger on why.

Because it doesn't compare.  You cognitively realize that my struggle to not be so damn fat is very different from a marathon runner who is struggling to perform better.  You cognitively realize it's a stupid comparison and he's only injecting these details to make himself look good at my expense.

The thing is he may not mean to take a dump on me either, he may genuinely think that's great and is only trying to relate to it, but in making such a parallel the intent certainly looks malicious.

mskyle

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #8 on: May 07, 2015, 10:41:43 AM »

The difference here is that douchebag is being disingenuous about the context, he is not sharing a problem he has overcome, rather he is taking my example of a serious medical problem, framing it as a context for his high level of fitness ability, and is basically laughing at me and saying "that's cute".

I still don't get it. I understand instinctively, that in the example you listed Mr. Douche should have kept his mouth shut, but I can't quite put my finger on why.

Also, if you understand instinctively, you don't have to understand *why* - follow your instincts if you feel like something you're going to say is going to make someone uncomfortable! There are no hard and fast rules for social interaction, everything is context-dependent. A conversation that works with one person might not work with another person, or even with the same person on a different day. Pay attention to people's reactions and modulate accordingly.

vivophoenix

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #9 on: May 07, 2015, 11:08:36 AM »

The difference here is that douchebag is being disingenuous about the context, he is not sharing a problem he has overcome, rather he is taking my example of a serious medical problem, framing it as a context for his high level of fitness ability, and is basically laughing at me and saying "that's cute".

I still don't get it. I understand instinctively, that in the example you listed Mr. Douche should have kept his mouth shut, but I can't quite put my finger on why.

Also, if you understand instinctively, you don't have to understand *why* - follow your instincts if you feel like something you're going to say is going to make someone uncomfortable! There are no hard and fast rules for social interaction, everything is context-dependent. A conversation that works with one person might not work with another person, or even with the same person on a different day. Pay attention to people's reactions and modulate accordingly.

well on the other hand,  i don't see this as being a douche. its the conventions of society, that indeed, make no sense.

someone trying to lose weight ,who is overweight is applauded, while someone who has consistently stayed in shape in this conversation isn't allowed to brag about something that was hard for him.

it has nothing to do with being socially awkward, you're just noticing the bs that people force others to go along with, in the interest of pretending we are civilized.

before i sound completely crazy i'll elaborate.

people are allowed to use percentages, when bragging about savings, cause 70% is kinda vague and also it sounds more impressive than admitting you make $200k  and save 70%.  also people don't want to be glared at by an audience that makes $20k. ( in this example the marathon runner is the $200k earner)

its giving enough information to sound impressive without undermining the other person.  which is kinda bs when you examine it.

and  I agree this forum does lose its damn mind if any one mentions any thing "luxurious". that's because some imaginary council has ruled the only thing you can talk about, without some cult-like attack, is your journey towards spending almost no money

it has become the social norm to reward people for doing what most people do   ( ie being at a lower BMI, not spending a lot of money they dont have it) vs rewarding people who go beyond( ie a marathon runner, or someone who is wealthy but doesn't spend , having really nice shit. )
« Last Edit: May 07, 2015, 12:11:14 PM by vivophoenix »

Kaspian

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #10 on: May 07, 2015, 11:09:33 AM »
When I reach FIRE, I fully intend on posting a photo of (what will be) my new Costa Rican beach cabana with the message, "Done work and never going back!  What did you spend your money on, suckas? Granite countertops, SUVs, and restaurants?"  People can call me a bragger `til the cows come home and anyone who doesn`t like it can go suck an egg.

MgoSam

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #11 on: May 07, 2015, 11:13:43 AM »
I think of 'humble brag,' as an attempt to brag about something, but pretending to be humble about it. In general though, I try to limit comments that I make on social media to a minimum, largely because I recognize that most people don't give a shit what I do nearly all of the time.

Kris

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #12 on: May 07, 2015, 11:19:53 AM »
I'm a little confused by the OP.  Are you talking about "in general" (like on FB, or in real life, etc.), or on this site in particular?

And yeah, to me a humble brag is, e.g., using someone else's situation as an excuse to immediately pretend to sympathize but actually say something to make yourself look awesome.

"Oh, man, so sorry to hear that your first 5k didn't go as well as you'd hoped.  I remember the time I ran my first marathon -- my goal was to place first in my age group, but I only placed second.  It was pretty hard, man.  Hang in there."


Jouer

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #13 on: May 07, 2015, 11:27:05 AM »
Nothing wrong with bragging. (You did something well, tell your friends.)

Nothing wrong with being humble. (I'm awesome at it...heh-heh)

But pretending to be humble when you are bragging is being a douche.

An example I just checked out online:

"My email got hacked so I just sent Olivia Munn an email about Viagra. Great." The author seems like he is talking about his email being hacked....but he really just wants others to know he has Olivia Munn in his address book.


mm1970

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #14 on: May 07, 2015, 11:36:22 AM »
Quote
Not okay to discuss your fitness or diet if you are in good shape
Not okay to discuss net worth if it's more than someone else
Not okay to discuss any luxuries

Hm...I dunno.  I think luxuries are okay, but the focus here seems to be FI, so if you post about luxuries and aren't FI, you're going to get called out for it.

And the fitness and diet thing, it comes down to being a douche or not.

The honest truth is that people are different.

Someone who is fit, and has always been fit, really probably cannot understand how it is to be fat, and lose weight, and maintain weight loss.
Someone who lost a bunch of weight in their 20's, probably cannot understand how hard it is in your 50's.

I got into a really long crazy thread about weight loss here where one guy was busting on me for being fat and lazy and stupid (okay, I'll cop to fat, but not the others), when the fact is, he's just a jerk who has never been in my shoes.  Eventually I had to detail exactly what I was eating, the exercise I was doing, my age, my lack of sleep, etc. ALL those things are factors, and if you've never tweaked this, and that for a year to lose 10 lbs, 20 lbs, 100 lbs whatever - you can't REALLY understand.

It doesn't mean you stay out of it.  It means you can say "this worked for me" - which may give someone a new idea to try.  It means you DON'T say "you lazy butt, if you just do this you'd be thin!"

I'm not sure if that makes any sense.  I love reading about other peoples fitness journeys, but as a mid-40's, full time working mother of 2 (who had her second baby at 42), a LOT of it doesn't apply to me.  Time, kids, sleep, joints - I can't eat that many carbs anymore, I can't run anymore (no more 1/2 marathons for me), and I may never be a "normal weight".  I'm about 8 lbs overweight now, and my experimentation over the last year (and 25 lbs of weight loss, give or take) are showing me that it is probably going to take Herculean efforts to lose 8 more pounds. 

trailrated

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #15 on: May 07, 2015, 11:47:20 AM »
http://thechive.com/2015/05/07/some-people-love-to-tout-their-own-praises-on-social-media-12-photos/

Some humblebrag examples in the link above.

I think there is a difference in complaining:

Oh this sucks I got a speeding ticket vs. "Man this is SOunfair! Why did the lambo dealership not tell me I'd get pulled over at least once a week in this car? Time for a corolla lol!"




LalsConstant

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #16 on: May 07, 2015, 11:59:14 AM »
it has become the social norm to reward people for doing what most people do   ( ie being at a lower BMI, not spending a lot of money they dont have it) vs rewarding people who go beyond( ie a marathon runner, or someone who is wealthy but doesn't spend , having really nice shit. )

Okay here's where you're off, continuing to use my fitness example.

The thing is in my fictional example both of us are entitled to brag about it.  I do brag I have lost over 100 pounds .  I am doing it right now.  Again note the transparency.

It would be okay for Douchebag to brag he runs marathons and is a world class athlete.

Clearly his is the better boast, but the thing to realize here is by presenting each boast in its own context without either of us trying to compare dissimilar states of being nobody is in any way saying either of these are a bad thing.  No one is demeaned.  We are happy for everyone involved because this is all good news.

The problem in my example is when Douchebag stops being objective and insists on comparing the two of us for the sole purpose of making himself look better.  It is a false equivocation done to socially harm another for self promotion.

I will use an extreme example.  Someone tells me they have terminal stomach cancer.  I complain about that time a few months ago I couldn't stop throwing up one day.  That would be the problem with humblebrag.

I actually am trying to help explain the concept, I used to have trouble with it too.

Giro

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #17 on: May 07, 2015, 12:04:54 PM »
well on the other hand,  i don't see this as being a douche. its the conventions of society, that indeed, make no sense.

someone trying to lose weight ,who is overweight is applauded, while someone who has consistently stayed in shape in this conversation isn't allowed to brag about something that was hard for him.

it has nothing to do with being socially awkward, you're just noticing the bs that people force others to go along with, in the interest of pretending we are civilized.

before i sound completely crazy i'll elaborate.

people are allowed to use percentages when bragging about savings cause 70% is kinda vague and also it sounds less impressive than admitting you make $200k  and save 70%.  also people don't want to be glared at by an audience that makes $20k. ( in this example the marathon runner is the $200k earner)

its giving enough information to sound impressive without undermining the other person.  which is kinda bs when you examine it.

and  I agree this forum does lose its damn mind if any one mentions any thing "luxurious". that's because some imaginary council has ruled the only thing you can talk about without someone cult-like attack is your journey towards spending almost no money

it has become the social norm to reward people for doing what most people do   ( ie being at a lower BMI, not spending a lot of money they dont have it) vs rewarding people who go beyond( ie a marathon runner, or someone who is wealthy but doesn't spend , having really nice shit. )

all of this. 

I have a coworker who seems to be a total douche to me but I think because his comments are more in line with societal norms, he gets lots of laughs from everyone.  Last week we had cake in the office for something or other.  Coworker says "OMG...GIRO IS EATING CAKE".  I'm generally a health conscious eater and I go to the gym during my lunch break.  Why is that okay but I could never say it back because he is 200 pounds and 5'10" tall?

Or another time when he made fun of my intelligence.  It was okay because he wasn't calling me stupid, which would be wrong.  It's okay to call someone too smart, or awkwardly intelligent.  not okay to say stupid.



gimp

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #18 on: May 07, 2015, 12:13:16 PM »
It's okay to complain. But when you complain about something that's better than what most other people have, you invite the humblebrag. Unless your complaint is sufficiently valid that it overcomes that your $x is better.

My car is in the shop - sure
My ferrari is in the shop - looks like you just want to talk about your ferrari
My ferrari burned down last night - okay, back to sympathy

NumberCruncher

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #19 on: May 07, 2015, 12:30:40 PM »
well on the other hand,  i don't see this as being a douche. its the conventions of society, that indeed, make no sense.

someone trying to lose weight ,who is overweight is applauded, while someone who has consistently stayed in shape in this conversation isn't allowed to brag about something that was hard for him.

it has nothing to do with being socially awkward, you're just noticing the bs that people force others to go along with, in the interest of pretending we are civilized.

before i sound completely crazy i'll elaborate.

people are allowed to use percentages when bragging about savings cause 70% is kinda vague and also it sounds less impressive than admitting you make $200k  and save 70%.  also people don't want to be glared at by an audience that makes $20k. ( in this example the marathon runner is the $200k earner)

its giving enough information to sound impressive without undermining the other person.  which is kinda bs when you examine it.

and  I agree this forum does lose its damn mind if any one mentions any thing "luxurious". that's because some imaginary council has ruled the only thing you can talk about without someone cult-like attack is your journey towards spending almost no money

it has become the social norm to reward people for doing what most people do   ( ie being at a lower BMI, not spending a lot of money they dont have it) vs rewarding people who go beyond( ie a marathon runner, or someone who is wealthy but doesn't spend , having really nice shit. )

all of this. 

I have a coworker who seems to be a total douche to me but I think because his comments are more in line with societal norms, he gets lots of laughs from everyone.  Last week we had cake in the office for something or other.  Coworker says "OMG...GIRO IS EATING CAKE".  I'm generally a health conscious eater and I go to the gym during my lunch break.  Why is that okay but I could never say it back because he is 200 pounds and 5'10" tall?

Or another time when he made fun of my intelligence.  It was okay because he wasn't calling me stupid, which would be wrong.  It's okay to call someone too smart, or awkwardly intelligent.  not okay to say stupid.

So your first example - your coworker is a bit douchey there since it's just not cool to draw attention to eating habits of coworkers, at least like this in an attention-seeking way (having a conversation about food and eating habits/sharing tips or recipes is different). In this case, it would have been acceptable to (in a joking tone) say back "OMG...you are too." It would be way douchy to say "OMG...COWORKER IS EATING CAKE" without context if eating sweets is something not unusual for your coworker.

Making fun of intelligence...unless you are good friends with someone and joke about it, calling someone "awkwardly intelligent" would be really weird and off-putting.

BlueHouse

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #20 on: May 07, 2015, 12:47:17 PM »
What about the interview question "name your biggest weakness".

So many people do the humblebrag response: " I tend to be a workaholic and that can lead to burnout, so I'm trying to rein it back".

What they're real long saying is "I'm the hardest worker you've ever seen, but I'll dial it down a notch so you mere mortals can keep up with me". Okay, maybe not the last part. Or maybe so.

Either way, a statement like this causes eyes to roll!  Is this a humblebrag? 

Kris

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #21 on: May 07, 2015, 12:51:43 PM »
What about the interview question "name your biggest weakness".

So many people do the humblebrag response: " I tend to be a workaholic and that can lead to burnout, so I'm trying to rein it back".

What they're real long saying is "I'm the hardest worker you've ever seen, but I'll dial it down a notch so you mere mortals can keep up with me". Okay, maybe not the last part. Or maybe so.

Either way, a statement like this causes eyes to roll!  Is this a humblebrag?

It totally is… but the problem is, that question in that context pretty much forces you to do it.

ETA:  Or, you could go meta-humble brag, and say this:  "You know, I'm sure most people answer that question with a pretend weakness that's actually a strength.  But I'm not going to do that.  I'm going to actually tell you a weakness, and not try to sell myself." Then tell them something that actually is a fault of yours, and say, "But I will tell you, I've made real progress on this in the last couple of years, and here's how…"

Translation: I'm more honest than all the other people you've interviewed, PLUS I am self-motivated and self-aware enough to identify weaknesses and do something about them."   
« Last Edit: May 07, 2015, 12:58:33 PM by Kris »

MgoSam

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #22 on: May 07, 2015, 01:25:03 PM »
What about the interview question "name your biggest weakness".

So many people do the humblebrag response: " I tend to be a workaholic and that can lead to burnout, so I'm trying to rein it back".

What they're real long saying is "I'm the hardest worker you've ever seen, but I'll dial it down a notch so you mere mortals can keep up with me". Okay, maybe not the last part. Or maybe so.

Either way, a statement like this causes eyes to roll!  Is this a humblebrag?

I've always felt that this is a question HR people actually hate, but ask because it is expected of them.

Tallgirl1204

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #23 on: May 07, 2015, 01:29:10 PM »

a pretend weakness that's actually a strength. "

That's a humble-brag in a nutshell.  If you are talking about your income and you complain that you have reached "too high a tax bracket," that's a humble brag.  Or "Having trouble finding a suit that is large enough chest size with a small enough waist"  -- that might feel like a genuine weakness to you, but to a lot of people that will sound like bragging. 

A personal example:  I used to be really, really skinny.  Just a ridiculously high metabolism.  Although the term "humble-brag" wasn't around, I realized after awhile that complaining about how skinny I was and how hard it was to gain weight just wasn't being heard by others as a problem-- it was heard as a "humble-brag."  Even though it was a real problem for me, it wasn't perceived that way by others.  I quit talking about it. 

Time, age and a sedentary job eventually solved that problem. 

Gone Fishing

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #24 on: May 07, 2015, 01:51:00 PM »
If you are planning on FIRE, you better get used to being interpreted as bragging because practically every word out of your mouth will be percieved that way!

For example:

What time did you leave?
Oh right after I got up, around 9:30 or so...

I'm going on a vacation.
Really, how long are you staying?
4-6 weeks, just depends on how much fun I am having...

Are you busy on Tuesday?
I've got to take my library books back in the morning, but I'm free after lunch...

Phone rings, you answer in a groggy voice:
Were you sleeping?
Yeah, I take a nap most afternoons...

You look like you are in good shape. What type of excercises do you do?
I don't workout much, only 3-4 times a week, but try to at least go hiking at least once a week...

What are you having for dinner? (asked on a Tuesday)
Well, I'm just winging a roast cooked for 6 hours with homegrown the vegetables I have on hand.

Monday's are great for errands, I never have to stand in line... 



This is fun! I could go on, but you get the point...

BlueHouse

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #25 on: May 07, 2015, 01:57:36 PM »
What about the interview question "name your biggest weakness".

So many people do the humblebrag response: " I tend to be a workaholic and that can lead to burnout, so I'm trying to rein it back".

What they're real long saying is "I'm the hardest worker you've ever seen, but I'll dial it down a notch so you mere mortals can keep up with me". Okay, maybe not the last part. Or maybe so.

Either way, a statement like this causes eyes to roll!  Is this a humblebrag?

It totally is… but the problem is, that question in that context pretty much forces you to do it.

ETA:  Or, you could go meta-humble brag, and say this:  "You know, I'm sure most people answer that question with a pretend weakness that's actually a strength.  But I'm not going to do that.  I'm going to actually tell you a weakness, and not try to sell myself." Then tell them something that actually is a fault of yours, and say, "But I will tell you, I've made real progress on this in the last couple of years, and here's how…"

Translation: I'm more honest than all the other people you've interviewed, PLUS I am self-motivated and self-aware enough to identify weaknesses and do something about them."

Off topic, but the last time I was asked for my weakness, I said I didn't feel I was particularly skilled at interviewing, but I had no intention of working on it to get better.  It got a laugh at least and got me out of giving a "real" answer. 

jinga nation

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #26 on: May 07, 2015, 02:49:03 PM »
Anything written by strangers on the internet should not be taken personally or seriously.

gimp

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #27 on: May 07, 2015, 03:23:54 PM »
People still ask the greatest weakness question?

Here's the best answer:

"I steal office supplies."

bacchi

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #28 on: May 07, 2015, 03:25:22 PM »
Anything written by strangers on the internet should not be taken personally or seriously.

Ha, totally! I'm one of the better public speakers in my city and probably the state but when I post in a forum, it's as if I'm drunk.

obstinate

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #29 on: May 07, 2015, 03:52:43 PM »
People still ask the greatest weakness question?

Here's the best answer:

"I steal office supplies."
I want to try: "That would be telling, wouldn't it?" Then just look at them straight in the eyes until they move on to the next question.

Hey It's Me

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #30 on: May 07, 2015, 05:52:22 PM »

The difference here is that douchebag is being disingenuous about the context, he is not sharing a problem he has overcome, rather he is taking my example of a serious medical problem, framing it as a context for his high level of fitness ability, and is basically laughing at me and saying "that's cute".

I still don't get it. I understand instinctively, that in the example you listed Mr. Douche should have kept his mouth shut, but I can't quite put my finger on why.

Also, if you understand instinctively, you don't have to understand *why* - follow your instincts if you feel like something you're going to say is going to make someone uncomfortable! There are no hard and fast rules for social interaction, everything is context-dependent. A conversation that works with one person might not work with another person, or even with the same person on a different day. Pay attention to people's reactions and modulate accordingly.

Well that's the thing: *I* would never chime in there because I instinctively understand that this is wrong, but in order to explain to someone for whom this is not instinctual, I (and you) need to be able to explain why this is wrong.

LalsConstant

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #31 on: May 08, 2015, 07:12:27 AM »

The difference here is that douchebag is being disingenuous about the context, he is not sharing a problem he has overcome, rather he is taking my example of a serious medical problem, framing it as a context for his high level of fitness ability, and is basically laughing at me and saying "that's cute".

I still don't get it. I understand instinctively, that in the example you listed Mr. Douche should have kept his mouth shut, but I can't quite put my finger on why.

Also, if you understand instinctively, you don't have to understand *why* - follow your instincts if you feel like something you're going to say is going to make someone uncomfortable! There are no hard and fast rules for social interaction, everything is context-dependent. A conversation that works with one person might not work with another person, or even with the same person on a different day. Pay attention to people's reactions and modulate accordingly.

Well that's the thing: *I* would never chime in there because I instinctively understand that this is wrong, but in order to explain to someone for whom this is not instinctual, I (and you) need to be able to explain why this is wrong.

And it has been explained.

thd7t

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #32 on: May 08, 2015, 08:14:40 AM »
OP, I think that in the case of this forum, there are two guidelines that I'd follow.  First, there's a place for bragging, it's the "Share Your Badassity" section.  Do it there and you'll be congratulated for the same stuff that you get chastised for other places.  Second, don't talk about what you do well in the "Antimustachian Wall of Shame and Comedy".  This is a place where the actions of others should be doing enough to make everyone feel better!

trailrated

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #33 on: May 08, 2015, 08:23:01 AM »
People still ask the greatest weakness question?

Here's the best answer:

"I steal office supplies."
I want to try: "That would be telling, wouldn't it?" Then just look at them straight in the eyes until they move on to the next question.

Whilst slowly grabbing a pen off the desk and placing it in your pocket...

Marus

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #34 on: May 15, 2015, 07:06:27 AM »
Bragging, humble or blatant, is my biggest issue with Facebook.  I'm just not comfortable with the fact that everyone is obsessed with self-promotion.  Rubbing my accomplishments in other people's faces strikes me as really tacky.  I admit I might be behind the times on this one though.

mizzourah2006

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #35 on: May 15, 2015, 10:05:05 AM »
well on the other hand,  i don't see this as being a douche. its the conventions of society, that indeed, make no sense.

someone trying to lose weight ,who is overweight is applauded, while someone who has consistently stayed in shape in this conversation isn't allowed to brag about something that was hard for him.

it has nothing to do with being socially awkward, you're just noticing the bs that people force others to go along with, in the interest of pretending we are civilized.

before i sound completely crazy i'll elaborate.

people are allowed to use percentages when bragging about savings cause 70% is kinda vague and also it sounds less impressive than admitting you make $200k  and save 70%.  also people don't want to be glared at by an audience that makes $20k. ( in this example the marathon runner is the $200k earner)

its giving enough information to sound impressive without undermining the other person.  which is kinda bs when you examine it.

and  I agree this forum does lose its damn mind if any one mentions any thing "luxurious". that's because some imaginary council has ruled the only thing you can talk about without someone cult-like attack is your journey towards spending almost no money

it has become the social norm to reward people for doing what most people do   ( ie being at a lower BMI, not spending a lot of money they dont have it) vs rewarding people who go beyond( ie a marathon runner, or someone who is wealthy but doesn't spend , having really nice shit. )

all of this. 

I have a coworker who seems to be a total douche to me but I think because his comments are more in line with societal norms, he gets lots of laughs from everyone.  Last week we had cake in the office for something or other.  Coworker says "OMG...GIRO IS EATING CAKE".  I'm generally a health conscious eater and I go to the gym during my lunch break.  Why is that okay but I could never say it back because he is 200 pounds and 5'10" tall?

Or another time when he made fun of my intelligence.  It was okay because he wasn't calling me stupid, which would be wrong.  It's okay to call someone too smart, or awkwardly intelligent.  not okay to say stupid.

Yeah, I have noticed this stuff as well. When I was younger and ate like a normal person I was overweight. Then I realized I couldn't eat like a normal person when I was 16-17, so I started monitoring everything I ate (I still weigh everything on a scale 14 years later). I am in good shape, but what I notice is people assume it is because I was "blessed" with a good metabolism, when that is not even close to the case. I do about 20-25 miles of cardio a week and lift 4-5x a week while monitoring everything that I eat 6 days a week. I just find it kind of irritating that people that are struggling to lose weight automatically assume that I have it "easy" because I have made health a priority in my life.

mm1970

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #36 on: May 15, 2015, 01:16:46 PM »
well on the other hand,  i don't see this as being a douche. its the conventions of society, that indeed, make no sense.

someone trying to lose weight ,who is overweight is applauded, while someone who has consistently stayed in shape in this conversation isn't allowed to brag about something that was hard for him.

it has nothing to do with being socially awkward, you're just noticing the bs that people force others to go along with, in the interest of pretending we are civilized.

before i sound completely crazy i'll elaborate.

people are allowed to use percentages when bragging about savings cause 70% is kinda vague and also it sounds less impressive than admitting you make $200k  and save 70%.  also people don't want to be glared at by an audience that makes $20k. ( in this example the marathon runner is the $200k earner)

its giving enough information to sound impressive without undermining the other person.  which is kinda bs when you examine it.

and  I agree this forum does lose its damn mind if any one mentions any thing "luxurious". that's because some imaginary council has ruled the only thing you can talk about without someone cult-like attack is your journey towards spending almost no money

it has become the social norm to reward people for doing what most people do   ( ie being at a lower BMI, not spending a lot of money they dont have it) vs rewarding people who go beyond( ie a marathon runner, or someone who is wealthy but doesn't spend , having really nice shit. )

all of this. 

I have a coworker who seems to be a total douche to me but I think because his comments are more in line with societal norms, he gets lots of laughs from everyone.  Last week we had cake in the office for something or other.  Coworker says "OMG...GIRO IS EATING CAKE".  I'm generally a health conscious eater and I go to the gym during my lunch break.  Why is that okay but I could never say it back because he is 200 pounds and 5'10" tall?

Or another time when he made fun of my intelligence.  It was okay because he wasn't calling me stupid, which would be wrong.  It's okay to call someone too smart, or awkwardly intelligent.  not okay to say stupid.

Yeah, I have noticed this stuff as well. When I was younger and ate like a normal person I was overweight. Then I realized I couldn't eat like a normal person when I was 16-17, so I started monitoring everything I ate (I still weigh everything on a scale 14 years later). I am in good shape, but what I notice is people assume it is because I was "blessed" with a good metabolism, when that is not even close to the case. I do about 20-25 miles of cardio a week and lift 4-5x a week while monitoring everything that I eat 6 days a week. I just find it kind of irritating that people that are struggling to lose weight automatically assume that I have it "easy" because I have made health a priority in my life.
Because it's not visible - it's natural.

Fat is visible.  You KNOW people are struggling if they are fat (and trying to lose weight).

If you look normal, it is assumed you are normal.  The fact of the matter is, you can have 3 normal looking people - one is blessed with a great metabolism and has never had to worry, one of them is just "normal" and eats a normal amount, and one of them has struggled and LOOKS normal but has to be very controlled about what they eat.

From the outside, you cannot tell.

zinnie

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #37 on: May 15, 2015, 01:50:01 PM »
What about the interview question "name your biggest weakness".

So many people do the humblebrag response: " I tend to be a workaholic and that can lead to burnout, so I'm trying to rein it back".

What they're real long saying is "I'm the hardest worker you've ever seen, but I'll dial it down a notch so you mere mortals can keep up with me". Okay, maybe not the last part. Or maybe so.

Either way, a statement like this causes eyes to roll!  Is this a humblebrag?

I've always felt that this is a question HR people actually hate, but ask because it is expected of them.

This is the best question ever, IMO, because probably half of the people will just flat out TELL YOU something that is a serious weakness of theirs. I have eliminated a lot of candidates using this question...

I'm a red panda

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #38 on: May 15, 2015, 01:53:29 PM »
I know quite a few people whose PURPOSE using facebook is self-promotion. It is an extension of what they see as their job, not personal.

So when a girl posts pictures in her sports bra showing off her great abs saying "Just finished XYZ workout", what she isn't saying, but totally means, is "And you can buy it from me because I'm part of a MLM scheme" - she's just trying to make it look like it is everyday, oh, whatever. 

(And I have lots of friends who sell this stuff so weight, from people super in shape and from people not in shape is a major part of my facebook wall.)


I also have friends who outright brag- a girlfriend of mine (who sells no associated products) posted a video of herself doing a 200lb back squat.  Because that is something worth bragging about.  It's the humble brag that is annoying.  "I hate how my wallet won't close because it is too full of money."
« Last Edit: May 15, 2015, 01:55:07 PM by iowajes »

CheapskateWife

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #39 on: May 15, 2015, 02:25:44 PM »
My general rule of thumb is to unfriend or unfollow anyone who uses the #blessed


mizzourah2006

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #40 on: May 15, 2015, 02:34:40 PM »
"I hate how my wallet won't close because it is too full of money."

It was that sliver of paper advertising cheap guitar lessons that busted mine wide open :)


Kris

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #41 on: May 15, 2015, 07:22:00 PM »
well on the other hand,  i don't see this as being a douche. its the conventions of society, that indeed, make no sense.

someone trying to lose weight ,who is overweight is applauded, while someone who has consistently stayed in shape in this conversation isn't allowed to brag about something that was hard for him.

it has nothing to do with being socially awkward, you're just noticing the bs that people force others to go along with, in the interest of pretending we are civilized.

before i sound completely crazy i'll elaborate.

people are allowed to use percentages when bragging about savings cause 70% is kinda vague and also it sounds less impressive than admitting you make $200k  and save 70%.  also people don't want to be glared at by an audience that makes $20k. ( in this example the marathon runner is the $200k earner)

its giving enough information to sound impressive without undermining the other person.  which is kinda bs when you examine it.

and  I agree this forum does lose its damn mind if any one mentions any thing "luxurious". that's because some imaginary council has ruled the only thing you can talk about without someone cult-like attack is your journey towards spending almost no money

it has become the social norm to reward people for doing what most people do   ( ie being at a lower BMI, not spending a lot of money they dont have it) vs rewarding people who go beyond( ie a marathon runner, or someone who is wealthy but doesn't spend , having really nice shit. )

all of this. 

I have a coworker who seems to be a total douche to me but I think because his comments are more in line with societal norms, he gets lots of laughs from everyone.  Last week we had cake in the office for something or other.  Coworker says "OMG...GIRO IS EATING CAKE".  I'm generally a health conscious eater and I go to the gym during my lunch break.  Why is that okay but I could never say it back because he is 200 pounds and 5'10" tall?

Or another time when he made fun of my intelligence.  It was okay because he wasn't calling me stupid, which would be wrong.  It's okay to call someone too smart, or awkwardly intelligent.  not okay to say stupid.

Yeah, I have noticed this stuff as well. When I was younger and ate like a normal person I was overweight. Then I realized I couldn't eat like a normal person when I was 16-17, so I started monitoring everything I ate (I still weigh everything on a scale 14 years later). I am in good shape, but what I notice is people assume it is because I was "blessed" with a good metabolism, when that is not even close to the case. I do about 20-25 miles of cardio a week and lift 4-5x a week while monitoring everything that I eat 6 days a week. I just find it kind of irritating that people that are struggling to lose weight automatically assume that I have it "easy" because I have made health a priority in my life.
Because it's not visible - it's natural.

Fat is visible.  You KNOW people are struggling if they are fat (and trying to lose weight).

If you look normal, it is assumed you are normal.  The fact of the matter is, you can have 3 normal looking people - one is blessed with a great metabolism and has never had to worry, one of them is just "normal" and eats a normal amount, and one of them has struggled and LOOKS normal but has to be very controlled about what they eat.

From the outside, you cannot tell.

I know someone who carries photos of himself when he was morbidly obese.  He hauls them out and shows them to anyone who makes an offhand crack about thin people having it easy. It is a glorious thing to behold.

raylit20

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #42 on: May 15, 2015, 09:23:36 PM »
I know someone who carries photos of himself when he was morbidly obese.  He hauls them out and shows them to anyone who makes an offhand crack about thin people having it easy. It is a glorious thing to behold.
At age 21 I was nearing 400lbs. Today, at 25 I am down to 210 and aiming for 185.

Most people think I'm kidding when I say I've lost 200lbs. Let alone via (mustachian) diet and exercise. I used to carry an old driver's license but instead show my graduation photo if someone asks.

Cressida

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #43 on: May 15, 2015, 11:13:21 PM »
At 217 pounds I am overweight for a 5'10" male.  However I have lost 116 pounds in the past nine months. 

At age 21 I was nearing 400lbs. Today, at 25 I am down to 210 and aiming for 185.

This is slightly OT but I just want to say that you guys rock. Losing that much weight takes incredible effort and persistence.

Pooperman

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Re: As a socially awkward engineer.....
« Reply #44 on: May 16, 2015, 08:41:41 PM »
People still ask the greatest weakness question?

Here's the best answer:

"I steal office supplies."
I want to try: "That would be telling, wouldn't it?" Then just look at them straight in the eyes until they move on to the next question.

Whilst slowly grabbing a pen off the desk and placing it in your pocket...

Pretty sure the correct response is "chocolate".