it's a great life, if you don't weaken (matociquala) wrote,
it's a great life, if you don't weaken

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the dirt is your lover now

darn meat-puppet. You know, I did just put food in it, it seems like no time at all ago. Rather a lot of food.

And here it goes whining again.

...Oh, I guess that was six hours ago. Huh, time flies.

So I got to the end of chapter two of Dust (it looks like the book's running to ~10 page chapters) which means I have about thirty more pages to write to get to the end of the proposal. And I have 16 days to do that in. Yanno, I think I can handle this, if I can keep my inner hare from freaking out.

Anyway, I'm on page 22, and so far I have cannibalism, regicide, dismemberment, Mysterious Strangers, derelict spacecraft, orphaned housemaids, nanotech elementals, and a broken dishwasher.

I wonder if I can keep up this pace.

So I took one of those Jungian personality type self-tests last night, out of curiousity, and this week, I'm an INFJ. (I'm always IN-something. The last two change without notice, as I'm always kind of borderline.) So, if you feel like you don't really know me, you're probably right, and if you feel like you know me pretty well, don't worry--it's all smokescreen.

Anyway, this is one of those odd synchronicities, because I trolled through my reading list this morning and found razorsmile talking about Carnival, and saying lots of interesting and only semi-spoilery character things.

Funny thing is, while I cannot actually answer his question (and dog knows, I may be wrong about my extrapolations,) I can at the very least explain my research. And since r.s. made me think about it, I wrote it down. And I don't think there is much in the way of spoilers here, anyway.

Vincent and Michelangelo are both INFJ types (about 1% of the population, the creepy people who seem to have an almost psychic intuitive facility. If you believe the Jungian coding scheme (which is pretty handy as a descriptive tool, anyway, though it tends to get used in these weird prescriptive ways, you often find them as artists, politicians, world leaders, and so forth. They're very talented both at understanding other people--and manipulating them. Ghandi's identified as an INFJ, to give you an idea.)

Vincent is particularly gifted even as intuitive superpercievers go, and I'm postulating that his (and Angelo's) gifts are well enough understood In The Future to be  optimized and trained for. (We do some of this already, in training interrogators and psychologists.)

People who have these mental quirks also tend to be very quick with languages and very good as negotiators and counselors. On the dark side, they make great con artists and manipulators, because they *get* people, and they often have a kind of ferocious charisma.

And there aren't many of them, so the rest of the world doesn't get trained to the cognitive style the way we do with more extroverted less-subtle manipulators.

So what's going on with those two is not hypervigilance in the PTSD sense.

EXCEPT. The actual result of Angelo's trauma IS what we understand as chronic post-traumatic stress disorder (and hypervigilance is part of that, of course). Under the pressure of which, he's developed as what we refer to, these days, as a borderline personality. Which is to say, he has a great deal of difficulty in forming relationships, his baseline empathy levels have been kicked in the teeth, and he has a hell of a time understanding or generating sympathy for other people. He's not quite a true sociopath, because the organic facility to do all these things does exist in him, but it's severely repressed.

Which is why he makes such a good assassin.

Now, an interesting thing happens to *some* people who are extremely cognitively and interpersonally gifted when they are so-traumatized at a young age that they develop these kinds of defense mechanisms. Some of these people become extremely dangerous, superbly plausible individuals, oh yes indeed, who are very very good at ferreting out what people want to hear and manipulating them to get what they want. It's related to the facility that allows abusers and habitual victims to find each other with such unerring creepitude, or drunks to hook up with enablers, or drug addicts to convince you, the seventy-fifth time, that they really are gonna kick any day now.

It's like an evil kind of magic, in other words. And a pretty well-known phenomenon in the world of psychiatic care.

Now, you take somebody who already has a vast intuitive gift, and break them in a very particular kind of way... and you get a character like Michelangelo. (The only other fictional version I can think of, off the top of my head, is the character of Jason Gideon on Criminal Minds, who is a *perfect* example of the type. I cackled about this a while ago, as I recall. *g*)

It's just that Michelangelo's been trained to do it on purpose, with conscious control. And he uses his powers for good.



And since I did that... a review and comment roundup (no rutabagas, some spoilers)*:

Somebody Spanish liked Carnival.

Somebody who thought the Jenny books were a tad meh also thinks Blood & Iron is on the meh side, too, and too much like A Midsummer Night's Dream. But I am promising, if I can stop overcomplicating things. (I can't wait to see what Mr, Orzel makes of not-The Stratford Man.)

But it sounds like treize64 liked the faerie book .

Here's somebody who thinks I'm a better writer than I think I am. I am contemplating releasing her or his DNA into the water supply. (mevennen, you get some love here too.)

Notes from somebody who is still reading Carnival and who just found this lj, so I can make him or her transcendently selfconscious.

I'll be taking DNA scrapings from muneraven, too.

Ooo, and I have a month to nibble my nails while waiting for a Locus review, it looks like. But in the meantime, here's their books-recieved writeup, which looks promising

*look, ma, I got my sense of humor back.

Tags: jacob's ladder, reviews

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