April 14, 2012

Would you want wings?

On April 5, I attended an Ask Roulette event. As they describe the event, "During Ask Roulette, strangers ask each other any question they want, big or small, in front of a live audience." The questions included, "Which is better: to be the Dumper, or the Dumpee?" and "If you had to live in a room with a barn animal, which animal would you choose?"

One gentleman was asked, "If you could have wings that allowed you to fly - real wings, not just flap-your-arms-and-fly wings, but real wings that could be retracted - would you want them?" He pondered the question for a long time, and replied, "No. One night in college, my buddies and I were out, and a friend tried on a pair of angel wings. And seeing him with those wings really freaked me out. So, no; I would not want wings."

The moderator was shocked - and refused to accept the answer! He turned to the audience, and announced, "Come on, let's get away from experience. This isn't about experience! Who here would want wings? Come on!" Either truthfully, or succumbing to the normative pressure, the vast majority of the audience raised their hands and nodded: Yes, yes, of course, we are like you, and we would want wings.

The answerer was defeated.

It IS about experience! That is exactly what life is about! That man's experience is crucial, and so interesting - how cool is it that someone in NYC once had such a negative reaction to seeing someone wearing a pair of wings that he himself would never want them, even if it meant he could fly?!

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