About Deductive Reasoning and “Spoken truths”
By Rock Kitaro
Date: Early 2011
It all really stems from a lack of communication. But it’s worse than that even. Because even when someone tells you how they feel, how can you be certain it’s the truth? I always say, some people are so obliviously deceptive that even when they tell you a secret, they tell you only enough for it still to remain a secret.
As a writer and story teller I recently posted a question on facebook where I asked if it were possible to take a character that someone else has created and give it originality. Someone at work saw it, and told me, yes. I didn’t tell him, but it’s really a trick question. Designed to expose a truth that in the fact, I believe that no character is ever really created by a writer or artist.
The originality I speak of is nothing more than a twisted perception of an individual that the artists knows of, with only added or reduced attributes. That’s why it pays to hang around interesting bastards, not just a cliché group of friends where everyone of you like the same thing and act the same. Diversity is key in that department. So I’ll be the first to publicly declare that any writer who lacks diversity in the people they hang around will end up writing characters who all have the same dialogue and mannerisms. This isn’t good, unless you’re writing for a program on the CW.
When I meet most people who I’ve never met for the first time, I, like the rest of us, really just look at what’s on the surface. People say you shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover, but I think that logic’s a load of bullcrap. What’s on the inside always shows on the outside, as you’ll see is a common theme in a lot of my stories. Only experience can help you discern the facts from prejudice and generalization.
But say you do meet someone for the first time. They tell you their name. Then what? What do you talk about? Should you talk at all? What does your natural instinct tell you to do in that circumstance? Despite the circumstance. It can be any situation. You could meet the person in a training room where you’re all there to learn a skill set. It could be a meeting at a bar where both you and the person just got off from a long day’s work.
I’m sure psychologist and professors worldwide have already come to this conclusion, but as a rebel, I feel in life, most lessons are learn from simply going out and experimenting. So I’ve come to the conclusion that everything that happens, every little trivial detail tells you everything you need to know about a person. Especially their silence or lack of communication.
Then there are the lies. Any one who understands the art of deception can tell you that to lie is to show fear. A lie is a verbal blockade that human beings set out to protect themselves from exposing the truth. So when you’re lying, you’re afraid. In my opinion. That’s might not be a bad thing. Fear and reflexes can save your life one day, or at the very least protect you from injury, physical or mental.
But I wonder… And I’ll admit that I still haven’t figured this out. When you have but one life to live… Knowing that with each and every minute that passes you will never get it back, is it rational to fear telling another what is that you feel, what it is that’s bearing on your shoulders? Sadly, the reason why I’m typing this blog is because I have no one who would listen. But that’s just me. And I’m used to it. But most people have decent families who support them, or a circle of friends who care about them, more than they know. Why not be honest? Why pretend to be someone you’re not?
In my personal experience, I’ve observed that if you’re alone with me and we’re waiting in awkward silence for something to happen or someone to appear, you can pretty much guarantee that I’ll pose a question that will tell me more about the person than I’m sure they want me to know. Take this question for example.
“John. If you had a son, and he grew up and killed someone. Despite the circumstances, it doesn’t matter if he’s a demented serial killer or if it was an incident of self-defense, would you turn him into the police.”
I asked a female this question, and she seemed to overlook the question entirely and told me, “I don’t want children. So that would never happen.” It was a funny incident. It’s like she didn’t even attempt to think about the hypothetical. This girl…I know she’s different and slightly traumatized from some earlier incident in her life, so we’ll dismiss her example. I only wanted to enter it for the possibility of her reading this right now. I’m sure it would make her smile. So there you go.
But I asked my boss, a long time high profile defense attorney the same question. And he looked at me like I had three heads. “Rock. Are you serious? Are you crazy? What kind of question is that?
Of course I wouldn’t?” Is what he told me.
Then I asked my mother. She said… “Yes. It would weigh heavy on my conscience if I didn’t. Plus it’s against god’s will to kill another human being, so it’s our duty to report it.”
I asked my father last month. Without fully thinking about it, he said “Yes. I don’t want that on my conscience.” Moments later, he said, “It depends on the circumstance.”
Those answers tell me a lot about the people I’m dealing with. As a writer, my imagination plays out the scenarios in my head with the answers they given. Again…people who know me, understand that I can’t control that aspect about myself. My imagination truly is a gift and a curse. The only way I can turn it off is with the help of sleeping pills.
In a scene where the son comes in crying, confessing his murder to the parents with the police on the way, you can bet your ass that with my mother and father, I’d be pulled out in chains, given to the system to do with what they want with me. With my boss. Things would play out a little more interesting. I’d hide in some closet or cellar, and my boss would come up with a convincing story to tell the police that would send them away for the night, giving us more time to come up with a solid alibi for my defense.
Stories play out with each answer, each truth about a person that’s presented. There’s only one flaw with this system of deductive reasoning. It’s a flaw I’ve always noted with any and every detective mystery where the detective goes on circumstantial evidence alone. That flaw is that anything is possible. The use of generalization, stereotypes, groups and categories can make or break you.
If there’s a hole in my shirt, and in the movie, a detective guesses that the hole was caused from the edge of a shaggy car door from whence I exited the vehicle, suggesting that I’m clumsy and hasty at the same time. The answer is that the hole could’ve easily been there because I simply like poking holes in my shirt. Individual mannerisms are often overlooked in movies because dumbass producers and blind-sided writers often think to himself or herself, “This person wouldn’t do this.” Just because one answer is given, doesn’t mean it’s the only way it could’ve happened.
Then there’s that lovely thing called, “confessions”. In the movies and in TV shows, at the end of the mystery drama, the culprit almost always comes clean about what they did. But in real life…We all know this isn’t the case. We’ve all witnessed it. We’ve all done it. You know what you did. You’re afraid of the consequences. Someone could be drilling you for the truth, telling you to swear on the life of your children that you’re innocent….And you’d do it. You’d swear on the life of your children that you’re not lying, when you know damn well what you did. If normal fully functional human beings are capable of doing this, what makes you think the criminally accused aren’t?
Well. There’s my thought anyway.
And if you’re wondering what I would do if my son grew up and killed someone. It doesn’t matter what he did. There’s no way in hell I’d turn him in. If he goes to jail. I go to jail. It’s as simple as that.