The makers of the card game Magic found that there were 3 distinct types of players.
• Timmy likes an exciting, big, splashy card that goes RAWWRRR. “Look I’ve got this awesome dragon! Timmy plays to feel something. Timmy often plays Green.
• Johnny likes complicated, clever decks that show off new and interesting ideas. “Just wait till I get my combo out and you go from 20 life to zero.” Johnny plays to express something. Johnny often plays Blue.
• Spike likes to win. Whatever will work, but that’s generally efficient (possibly even boring) cards. “I copied this deck from online and paid $200 for the planeswalkers, but it was worth it to dominate the tournament.” Spike plays to prove something. Spike plays whatever color beats the color everyone else in the tournament is playing.
Apologies for the abbreviation. There’s a more in depth article here. http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/A
Personally I consider myself a Spike, but a really crappy Spike.
Fascinating eh? Not really. Until the day we realized… these philosophical narratives apply to so many other creative endeavors.
• Timmy cooks awesome things that just sound fun to say. Hey guys, I’m roasting a wild boar! (Nate G admits to being a Timmy when it comes to bread.)
• Johnny cooks clever things taking ingredients you know of but have never thought to put together that way before. Many professional chefs are Johnnies, because hey, it’s interesting. eclecitian certainly is.
• Spike cooks what she knows will _work_. Do I have experience with this recipe, does it scale, does it taste good, can I do it easily with ingredients that aren’t hard to get? I consider myself a Spike when it comes to cooking, which is why I cook the same damn dish every winter party.
My Spike philosophy is probably due to my exposure to politics. There are so many things I _want_ to work because they are interesting, complex, and counter-intuitive. But political discourse is full of people who think like that, and are constantly coming up with new, counter-intuitive ideas and perspectives. And it’s obvious that 90% of those ideas are junk, and you’re much better off just looking at empirical data and seeing what _works_. Hence my obsession against overly using pattern matching in the real world.
I was just talking to one of my friends about the existence of Emotional Timmy, Johnny, and Spikes. I’ll leave that as an exercise to the reader (or pestering me on gchat).