silverback gorilla (jcruelty) wrote,
silverback gorilla

People interested in "fighting crocodiles" are actually not that interesting

Has anybody found any Livejournal interests that reliably correlate with interesting people? Or interesting journals, at least? I've played around with it over the last few years, but haven't come up with anything surefire. oblique strategies? world's most dangerous places?

How can there be only TWO journals that list "world's most dangerous places" as an interest? What could be more interesting? Read the book!

When I first started using Livejournal, I was fascinated by people's userinfo. How they chose to describe themselves, what they said they liked. I developed some rules.

1. You should have at least one interest nobody else has, because you are a snowflake
2. You shouldn't take your interests too seriously
3. You should take your interests kind of seriously. (Before I started using LJ for real, I had a placeholder bio that described me as an "ugly angry drunk," and my only listed interest was protein folding. That bio still cracks me up when I think of it-- what LJ needs is more ugly angry drunks-- but I eventually changed it, because it's actually kind of fun to contemplate your interests and try to build a representative list. Your LJ interest list is like a poem... a very, very narcissistic poem.

But when it comes to finding strangers with simpatico journals, interest searching hasn't proven very effective. On the contrary, my searches have just driven home the lesson learned by music-boffin Rob Fleming at the end of Nick Hornby's incisive music-boffin novel, High Fidelity: people are not defined by their interests. If we like the same bands... so what.
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