Thought Experiment

Thought experimentation is a tool we philosophers often use in order to explore life, existence and the Universe without having to get out of our chairs. So let the experiment begin.

Suppose you look out of your bedroom window at 01:00 am, and see a naked man standing in the middle of your lawn. Let’s say you estimate his age to be somewhere between 65 and 75 years old. He is quite bald, and carrying a generous amount of weight, although not evenly distributed. A good proportion of it has been monopolised by his belly; mostly at the expense of his legs, which seem rather bandy. He has hairy shoulders. The street lamp right next to your garden is bathing him in a pool of light far brighter than you are comfortable with.

Okay, the scene for our thought experiment has now been set; let’s call it scenario 1 (S1).

Consider S1, but now the man is wearing ankle socks and sandals, just like the socks and sandals you can see being worn by men of this age on the streets of any popular British seaside resort. Let’s call this S1a.

For S1b, we have all the above, plus the addition of an umbrella, which the man is holding as if to shelter himself from heavy rain, even though it isn’t raining.

S1c sees our man as above, but also holding an over stuffed Teddy Bear -similar in scaled down proportions to the man himself- and also wearing socks and sandals.

S1d; as above, but there is also a tent and camping stove on your lawn.

That’s part one of the thought experiment, so make sure you’ve had a good think about it before we move on to part two.

Part two simply consists of two questions:

Q1. Up to what point of the scale from S1 to S1d would you just return to bed, hoping that everything would be back to normal in the morning?

Q2. After which point of the scale from S1 to S1d would you feel it necessary to take some sort of action?

As far as I know, this thought experiment has never been done before, so we are probably breaking new ground here.

What if you live in a low rise, and the lawn is not yours as such, but you pay a maintenance charge, and the guy in the socks is a cohabitant who is a bit odd, so you have avoided communicating with?

Interesting. Is there a period of time to think on this ?

Are you Spitty Mk11? :confused:

None of that makes any difference. This is a thought experiment, and you shouldn’t be thinking any of that stuff. :018:

Q1 - I wouldn’t.

Q2 - S1 - S1c - I would be concerned about his health and probably summon a Social Worker and/or Mental Health Team

Q2 S1d - I would be tempted to also call the Police to make sure there was no problem about evicting him.

No, Zuleika, you are free to dwell on the scenarios I have given you for as long as you like. Depending on how much you like them, of course. :001:

Why? Does Spitty do thought experiments?

I thought this exercise was a complete waste of time; then I realised I only thought I thought this was a complete waste of time - so having thought I thought, I thought I had better decide what thought I was going to act upon.

Now having had a good think about what I thought I thought, I thought it would be good thought to think this was indeed a waste of time, so I thought stuff it, I simply don’t think I could be arsed with it all…I think!

Thanks, Tabby. Your answers will be put into a data base, along with everyone else’s. It will be interesting to see what comes out when they’ve all been crunched.

Thinking outside the box. I like it, PooBear. :023:

Something like that! :smiley:

Perhaps he and I should collaborate on my next project. Two heads are better than one, they say. Even if one of them is his. :confused:

I know it’s only 11:00 pm, but I’ve looked out of my window and everything seems as it should be, so I’m off to to bed without any troubling thoughts.

Please carry on without me. :039:

I’d probably think I was in a dream .
Answer to Q1 …S1a
No need to consider Q2

I would also sleep

But maybe I would consider contacting the fashion police?!

My first thought was that if this man is the age stated and naked, he probably doesn’t know where he is or maybe even know who he is. Following on from this I think the most likely reason is that he is suffering from dementia and has somehow wandered from a facility close by. The mini me teddy bear also suggests dementia or a similar condition which is characterised by infantile behaviour or another much more complex psychiatric condition. The camping stove and tent may suggest either a more general mental illness - probably schizophrenia. Or it could suggest somebody has kicked him out of home and left him in a random spot with the bare necessities. (In his case after I’d taken care of the man’s welfare I would be after them for elder abuse holding a very heavy book that I could throw at them) Tabby’s response is the same as mine. I’d call the local mental health team and let them take care of the situation. I would not call the police myself. Although in my state - and all the others in Australia I think - Emergency mental health calls usually get patched through to the police anyway and they turn up but usually hang back unless they’re needed. I guess the procedure is similar there. Maybe not. Above and beyond all of this it could simply be a sick joke on you. You will not know until you investigate further. :slight_smile: I certainly wouldn’t be ignoring the man.

Sorry Harbal, no can do, I’ve got enough to think about.:wink:

Been shifting some of my workload for years.:lol::lol:

Am I looking at the Gnome in my garden ?

Or has someone dumped a garden ornament ?

If so I would just go back to bed after all it is 1a m.

Firstly, no man naked or otherwise could get access to my lawn without first going through the house and the door is locked at night .

The lawn at the front is open to the lane and shared with a neighbour , the man could be something to do with her.

So I would open the window and for the sake of common humanity throw him a blanket in case he was cold then go back to bed :slight_smile: