A Study on Human Behavior
Occasionally, I write movie reviews for a local online website which gets me into early screenings. At these early screenings, marketing companies bring in tons of people who usually win tickets or are signed up to get sporadic tickets inviting them to the show. Most of these people have to just find a seat while movie critics get reserved seats. Yesterday, I went to see The Mummy starring Tom Cruise, and when I got to my row of seats, a couple was sitting down at two reserved seats.
As they were just sitting and I was trying to get by them, the woman asked me, a random guy that doesn’t work at the theater, “Are we allowed to sit here?”
“Are you the person on the sign?” I asked, pointing to the name on the reserved sign.
She said, “No.”
“Well, then, you can’t sit there,” I said.
They sat there anyway. Shortly afterward, a lady, who I assume worked for the marketing agency, asked them to move. They pretended like they didn’t know they couldn’t sit there and complained there weren’t any other seats in the theater. They obeyed eventually and moved somewhere else.
Let’s examine some sad, albeit hilarious, human behavior. First, the person sees a sign clearly not theirs but they obviously don’t care. Hey, maybe I’ll get away with this, they think. But then, they ask a random stranger something they already know, that they can’t sit there, probably for validation. When the random stranger doesn’t give them the validation, they just do it anyway. But when someone of authority asks them to move, they don’t fully comply at first, playing stupid and turning it around on them, saying it’s their fault.
Let’s break it down even further:
- If the risk isn’t high, defy authority.
- Ask permission from society for validation of your disobedience
- If validation isn’t given, do it anyway especially if you feel the risk isn’t that high.
- When a person of authority demands you obey, you continue to push back, claiming ignorance and saying it’s their fault.
- Finally, you get to make the initial choice you should have from the start: Obey or suffer the consequences.
When a human wants something, they’ll go to great lengths to get it even when they know it’s wrong.
Oh, and the movie was okay. Totally a rental.