Wednesday Whiteboard #4


Dotpoint # 1: I have arrived on Twitter! Now I’m getting spam tweets. Tweets from random dudes and dudettes who probably aren’t real. You click on their website (under their Twitter profile) and discover they’re really an advertisement for a lame MLM scheme. Thanks to Svasti for showing me how to deal with these time wasters: @spam. Take that!

And this: a really useful site for doing research on Twitter:

There’s Monitter which allows you to type in three terms and watch real life Tweet streams before your very eyes!!

And there’s also Tweet Volume, a very neat application that gives a comparative bar chart of user-defined terms. Appeals to the social scientist that I am!

This is just a teasing hint of the stuff that’s out there for Twitter. Go to the first link about and enjoy playing with the rest.

Dotpoint # 2: Nature and nurture. Adoption studies are often to explore the effects of nature and nurture on human personality. Whilst I think there is a good deal of nature in personality, nurture –especially the socio-cultural milieu in which you’re raised- is almost as important. As an adopted person, I can offer a case study of my own.

My birth mother (whom I did not meet until I was 31) is the daughter of a Commonwealth Games-qualifying cyclist and champion swimmer. My mother was also a champion swimmer – and the day she got the letter from me (asking if she was my biological mother) she was on the way to a Body Pump class! She’s also done a number of treks in the Himalayas (just like me). I’ve written about my fitness exploits on this website, so I won’t recount them here. My daughter became a champion swimmer in primary school, and at age 16, a Body Attack instructor. My son, on the other hand, who has an even better pedigree as his father is an amazing athlete, is totally unsporty! He would rather shoot aliens on his Playstation than do any kind of organised sport.

Why am I sharing this? Because of another turn of events last week…

Rhiannon –as you would expect at 19 years old- had no idea what to do with herself after high school. She went through all kinds of permutations during the years leading up to university: fitness industry work, the Army, the police force, teaching, marketing, sexual health counselling/therapy, and finally, journalism. She started uni this year, enrolled in a mass communications & journalism degree. Well… low and behold this week she has transferred into social science, majoring in –you guessed it- anthropology and sociology.

Before you say, oh, that’s your influence, I will add that there is a very individual that reason she’s changed into a social science degree: she has found a 4th year course focussed on sexual health education and counselling … and this is exactly what she wants to do. She knows it in her heart – and I can hear it in her voice. To gain entry to this course, you need a social science degree. In the meantime, she’ll be doing anthropology and sociology – just as I did.

Is it nature or nurture? Well, I think it’s probably 60/40 – in nature’s favour with the caveat that nature is the framework only. Nurture is fine print.

And then there’s my son, Ben … oh dear… and he blows any theory about nature right out of the water. He’s another story altogether.

Dotpoint #3: Commenters on Popular Blog Sites. A quick glance through the comments fields of the four or five positive psychology/self help-type blogs I read shows a number of the same people commenting. Commenting. On. Every. Site. Every. Day.

Self-promotion is the reason for these comments. These people also have similar self-help blog sites they wish to promote. I wonder if it works? If, after commenting on Seth Godin’s or Tim Ferriss’s site, they suddenly have a MASSIVE increase in traffic and sales of their goods/services? I wonder if it’s worth it. Every. Site. Every. Day. I’ll give them a 100% Try-Hard Badge for their efforts (Try-Hard Badge has lady with frizzy hair walking Chihuahua from Svasti’s nightmare day on it!).


One thought on “Wednesday Whiteboard #4

  1. I’m probably more like the way Ben turned out. I’m completely different from my family in so many ways, its ridiculous. In fact, I often wondered if I was adopted but it turned out I had a half-brother instead, a child my mother had before she met my dad.

    My sister on the other hand, grows to be more and more like my folks all the time. Mostly in respect to having a family though, I guess. And I’d venture to say that should I (at this late stage in the game) ever have kids, I don’t think I’d suddenly develop values more closely aligned with my parents!

    I heard a theory somewhere that kids are either really like their parents or they become polar opposites. Interesting though, why it is that it works that way!

    I wish I could draw cartoons – if I could, I’d love to draw the frizzy orange haired lady with her dogs for your button! 😉

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