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Sensation seeking

Sensation-seeking can take many forms. Some sensation-seekers love physical adventures and dangers such as rock climbing and sky diving. Although I like caving and I have driven too fast on occasion, I'm not really much of a dangerous activity guy.

I do like to ingest (legal) sense-shocking substances. Hot, spicy foods. Very strong coffee. Strong, highly alcoholic beer and high-proof spirits. Very rarely do I imbibe to excess. I like my senses to be jolted, not obliterated. There are some illegal substances I have not tried yet that I would like to experience before I die.

I also like shocking, extreme ideas from all over the spectrum. I very much enjoy both Michael Moore and Ann Coulter. I don't know how many people can say that. It doesn't mean I necessarily agree with Moore and Coulter. It's just that, where many people feel outrage about these folks, I find myself being extremely engaged and entertained.

Sex. Self-explanatory.

I enjoy the moderate pain that is an inevitable part of contact in pick-up basketball.

I think I need all of these strong sensations to verify that I am not dead yet.


Jun. 29th, 2005 11:34 am (UTC)
Some of the guys I play with frequently flirt with self-mutilation, usually by driving to the basket when they know that beefy defenders are going to bring the hammer down on them. I don't go there. Where is the line? For me it is a style that occasionally results in small bruises.

You might be interested in the following passage from my basketball page (http://drj.virtualave.net/other/athletico/bball.html) because I cite one of today's leading social psychologists.

Roy Baumeister, a social psychologist at Case Western Reserve University, has an interesting theory of masochism that may apply to this aspect of basketball for me. Roy says that what masochists enjoy about pain is a heightened sense of awareness of aliveness in the present moment. (We're talking about small amounts of pain here, not injury-producing pain.) Dead people don't feel pain, so when you hurt you know you are alive. Or, as Lao Tsu said in chapter 13 of the Tao Teh Ching, "Misfortune comes from having a body. Without a body, how could there be misfortune?" Pure physical experience instantly empties the mind of annoying, incessant, internal chatter. Zen teachers stopped idiotic thoughts by cracking students over the head with staves. I stop my own idiotic thoughts by putting a body on someone.