Friday, January 30, 2009

That Intuition

While walking in a crowded street, if you hear someone clap and yell 'hello' do you instinctively know that someone is calling you? I have no statistics to back this up but I have a feeling that invariably the person being called turns around.

Let us say you walk into a shop, find no shopkeeper inside and so you walk away. Now if you hear someone yelling a loud "hello saar" from behind, you turn around. Even if you have context-switched into a different thought stream - you do turn around instinctively. Maybe something has programmed your brain that you might be the stimulus for that call. This instinct to turn back, though quite amazing in itself, is at least acceptable. Imagine this, you are walking in a crowded street and your friend happens to see you and claps his hand. You instinctively turn back. Here there is no obvious stimulus that has programmed your brain. Furthermore - not many among the general public who hear the call turn around. In fact sometimes as a casual observer one can see only the intended recipient turn back and respond to that clap. Yes, this theory is certainly not perfect - but in the instances where it is true - it is quite fascinating.

I have heard theories floated around that in a crowded place if you want to grab the attention of someone seated at a distance - all you have to do is stare at the person intensely. Apparently, something stirs within that person and causes them to look around for potential stare'ers. Women often claim to have this magical skill of being able to know if someone is ogling at them. There is a good chance that this might be true. Many men will readily agree to an experience of having a girl turn back and give them a quick look if you have been surreptitiously sight adichufying them. I don't know what causes this so called 'sixth sense'. What stirs us from our reverie and causes us to look around? Since we now are researching everything under the sun and developing theories on them, I am sure there must be research behind this.

Having developed this "sure shot" theory, I was mildly surprised when a relative of mine complained about my responsiveness yesterday. They had seen me walking on the road and called my name. Several times. Apparently I hadn't responded. I guess no theory is perfect.


Alan Smithee said...

There used to be a flash card game that was quite the rage 5-6 years back. The first screen will show 6 cards and ask you to choose one in your mind. In the second screen you will find 5 cards - the one that you had in your mind will be missing. Quite a trick until you figure that none of the initial 6 appear in the second screen. Anyhow, if what you say is true to some degree, I'd expect spy organizations to have done some research on that. Imagine wire tapping someone and that one gets the intuition.

alpine path said...

Well, there is one modification for this theory. If you subconsciously wish that you don't want to talk to/respond to someone, then this "intuition" would be overcome by that desire. So, maybe, your relative calling your name falls into that category :D

Thirumbidu! Thirumbidu! said...

I remember a movie in which Manivannan tests this by murmuring "Thirumbidu! Thirumbidu!" at a woman and he succeeds in that when she turns around and look at him. I guess that there are some brain waves generated and transmitted to the recipient who is made 2 acknowledge the sender by turning around. Well I hv tried this too to test and surprisingly it works :)

Anonymous said...

This is well documented... now...
Everybody has an alertness layer - invisible to the naked eye - enveloping them most of the time. Even while the receiver is dormant it will still send packet headers with frequency details periodically. The transmitter can activate this layer by matching the frequency through
1) clapping hands
2) shouting 'hello'
3) staring
4) willing
or in extreme cases
5) yawning
Frequency mismatch has to be compensated with volume increase.
The alertness layer is turned off when the TV is switched on.
I mean, its science!

The Talkative Man said...

exam-la bit pass panra gang thiru-thiru-nu muzhikaradhu dhaan nyabagathla varudhu...

Maha said...

1)your prev entry - i was so much reminded of this. which led me to this. notice the young koundan!!
2)Mr.smithee - sorry boss - broken 5th metacarpal typing is imposs - will respond in 8 weeks.
3)current entry - read it only now - and stocking up for my respons to mr.smithee - will say in next post.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting note...not entirely sure about how someone being beckoned would know so in a crowd but i do have a theory to a woman's intuition - the one that causes her to note any guy who may be ogling at her :D....thats intended by nature as it is the woman or the feminine kind that is intended to protect her young ones which explains why the lioness tends to the cubs and the lions leave and why the kangaroos have a pouch - the female ones...this "feminine intuition is what nature defines as shakti" ! - just a spiritually scientific take ;)

sreekrishnanv said...

I feel it should be perceived the other way round ... Every person walking in the crowd has an intuition that some one they know is around.. Like if my frnd is walking in Ranganathan street and chances are that they know some one might be there - they turn to almost every clap and hello ... and to add to your theory - there will be more than one people who turn around .. how many times have you known people calling other person for you?

Also, on the sight adichufying, its a guy thing to look/Stare at any girl and its a girl thing to keep conscious of the situation around to know how many people are staring at her and half the time she misses to turn when we are not staring - or turns around just to say stop staring or WOW ! :P

Also, the last one - Its not No theory is perfect .. not all confine well to the theory ? That way?