We delight in others’ misery… It seems like I have consigned myself and the ‘we’ here to being raving sadists. When it’s put like that I’m forced to say: I stick to what I said. The Germans call it ‘Chardenfreude’ and while I’m not in the habit of agreeing with the Germans – its great to have an appropriate way to express: we delight in the misfortunes of others
This catharsis was reached as I sat in my office, which is actively located below ground level! Looking up at the happy people walking past in the glorious sunshine making the most of the spectacularly rare lovely English summer day, all I could think was – god please let it rain. I would have chosen for the British population to be miserable in order to placate my eon self-pity!
When somebody is brandishing the latest gadget – say the iPhone, a small part of you wants this person to drop their phone! Perhaps to serve them right, but it remains for your personal edification.
I recently stayed on a camp bed for three months and was extremely luck not to get bed bugs – about which I did not gloat! Nevertheless, my fellow happy campers frequently told me that they wished I had got bitten as badly as they had.
Do we not all slightly smile when someone bites their tongue? (Or in my case my finger – a remarkably skilful feat, and one only really achieved by shoving too much of a sandwich into ones mouth… not allowing the fingers to escape before gluttony forces the jaw down!)
Having drummed up several instances I feel appropriately illustrate my theory (ans my incapacity to eat food). I now wish to point to why I feel my point points to a great point to be made about people, in a way that is succinct and to the point.
My hypothesis is as follows. When we were cavemen, or if such a thing as the Hobbesian state of nature was ever such a thing (I know its hypothetical), then life was about being the fittest, strongest, and frankly – being ahead. As such, your peer succeeding in some way that you are not is an instance of them being ahead. Clearly this has to be translated relative to the society! Ahead in the state of nature is probably having a larger sharpened spearhead as opposed to the google glass. But if they are doing better, of have the means to do better, you are in trouble if resources become scarce! Therefore it is hot wired into your psyche to wish them I’ll to bring-about your resurgence to the top of the pile!