We were having so much fun on this thread that I couldn’t resist linking to this news item by Adrian Chen. The good news is that Scott Adams (creater of the Dilbert comic strip) “has a certified genius IQ” and that he “can open jars with [his] bare hands.” He is also “able to lift heavy objects.” Cool!
In all seriousness, I knew nothing about this aspect of Adams when I wrote the earlier blog. I was just surprised (and remain surprised) that he was so impressed with Charlie Sheen for being good-looking and being able to remember his lines. At the time I thought it was just a matter of Adams being overly-influenced by his direct experience, along with some satisfaction in separating himself from the general mass of Sheen-haters out there. But now I wonder if something more is going on, that maybe he feels that he and Sheen are on the same side in a culture war.
In any case, the ultimate topic of interest here is not Sheen or Adams but rather more general questions of what it takes for someone to root for someone. I agree with some of the commenters on the earlier thread that it’s not about being a good guy or a bad guy. Lots of people rooted for the Oakland Raiders (sorry, I’m showing my age here), maybe partly because of their reputation as bad boys. And Charlie Sheen is definitely an underdog right now.
P.S. Amazingly enough, Chen includes a link to a Dilbert strip mocking the very behavior that Adams was doing. Not a big deal but it’s a bit odd.
P.P.S. No, I’m not Dilbert-obsessed! It just happened that I was reading Gawker (sorry!) and the Scott Adams entry caught my eye.
P.P.P.S. My favorite part of this whole story is Russell’s-paradox-evoking thread centered around Adams’s self-contradicting statement, “You’re talking about Scott Adams. He’s not talking about you.”