The reason why ‘I’m Christian unless you’re gay” sets a new standard. 2 Extended Thoughts

This is my opinion, my reason, why I choose to accept the assumptions proposed by science, as opposed to any other method of understanding the world.

We the people have different methods of dealing with the world, importance, I believe, is not to be put on _which type_ of method is chosen, but rather _the consequence_ of which one we choose. My choice of method is dependent on its predictability and utility, for others it may be a sense of being taken care of or a sense of safety. No reason is better or worse, true or false, they are merely different depending on what we need and perhaps, what we are raised to/have a disposition for/through experience develops a need for.

We thus choose method depending on what we need to rely on to give us the most compelling reasons for believing in it in the first place. In turn, the most compelling reason is the one that satisfies whatever need we have to be satisfied. Circular arguments do not get more circular than this, allow me to explicate.

Choices on method are varied and great in number, one may choose Religion A, B or C, a modified version A’, B’ or C’, an individually modified one A”, B” or C”, various forms of pseudosciences or sciences. Even within pseudoscience and science we tend to form smaller groups, similar to the previous contention that religion subdivides to a whole range of different methods of dealing with the world.

It comes down to that Individual A and Individual B are both as compelled to believe what its community tells them. Or, are as compelled to believe the conclusions they come to themselves when reviewing the canons of their method. Even justification for the individual is of the same valence. I.e. subjective feeling about one’s chosen method, I believe for psychological reasons, differs little between Individual A and Individual B.

My assertion is that science is a better method of dealing with the world because it has enormous predictive capability compared to any other method. It allows me to understand the world in a rhetoric and structure that satisfies my need for knowledge and stability. This is what is important to me personally.

Utility can be discussed endlessly, especially from a utilitarian perspective and the issue when discussed in folk tongue usually comes down to that of source. Who came up with what? Religion is the source vs Science is the source.

I can understand an argument for religion which states that people with a religion have been behind discoveries as well as atheists. However, this to me is a misconception, the purpose is not to deny religion, but what is to be discussed is not which method the individual relies on but the canons upon which the discoveries have stemmed from. A religious/atheist/XYZ person, relying on the canons of science to find information, uses science to direct the subject matter of his research.

Very few groundbreaking discoveries can be made from the bible, especially since it is not to be added to or explicitly changed -because it would not be God’s word (sorry, interpretation of God’s word). The same sentences are reinterpreted to fit our everchanging societies, which I think is good and well. Issues evolve however when there are clear contradictions, such as homosexuality being explicitly condemned in the bible but increasingly accepted in society. As a consequence, Individual B has a choice to modify her private belief to that of C or modify her method by changing it to B’ or B” so as to fit her private beliefs more congruently.

On the side of Science, its canons are rarely stable. In between revolutions, which change the fundamental foundations of our understanding of the world around us, we have the incremental progress within those foundations with additions, refinements and revokements. The best part is, even the lenses we use to see the structure of science through are subject to this process. Also, it matters little what one believes in science in respect to what is found in research. I may not like or believe that Theory A is false but I do not get to have an opinion unless it is backed up with value-free experiments/data (in which case it ceases to be opinion). This, to a certain extent, safeguards experiments from being entangled with what we _want_ the world to contain as opposed to what it _does_ contain. It doesn’t matter that people believe or not in the theory of evolution, as of yet thousands of experiments support it, and not one has been able to falsify it. I am thus forced to accept the assumptions of evolution regardless of how I subjectively see it, unless I can think of an even more compelling account of how to explain how life evolved from single-cell organisms to the variet of flora and fauna we see around us today.

These arguments persuade me to use the methods given by science to deal with the world around me. Just as a Christian, Muslim or any other religiously affiliated person would agree upon; the world (and indeed universe) is an absolutely stunning, awe-inspiring and mesmerising environment to be allowed to be a part of.

The reason why “I’m Christian unless you’re gay” sets a new standard.

Before I even start, I need to say this. I deliberately use trivial, black/white, crude groupings (religious people, atheists etc.) in this OP. I do it only because it is not the point of this piece to divide and define, it is to illuminate the difficulties and issues they pose to each of us and each other. I am fully aware of that these groups I am about to mention are far from homogenous, again, the point is to illuminate the difficulty in communication between individuals rather than anything else.

Needless to recount, atheists and religious people struggle to get along. The YouTube Chronicles (I made it up, don’t search for it) of atheist/religious videos are always filled with comments from both sides arguing their basis of opinion. Atheist videos usually attract atheists and top comments are usually aimed at religious people and vice versa. So why care? Easy. It doesn’t help. Why? Easy. We do not communicate with equal rhetoric. So? Complicated.. please read on.

I’ve come across thunderf00t (YouTube celeb advocating atheism) and his, to a large extent, opposite, Eric Hovind (YouTube celeb advocating Christianity). Recently, at the 2012 Reason Rally, they attempted to discuss what was what and immediately got stuck in rhetoric cobweb. From an outside perspective it was quite easy to see what was going on. Eric Hovind asked questions stemming from his world view (which, amongst other things, include the belief in a Christian God). The issue from thunderf00t’s perspective was that, the questions posed included assumptions that did not exist in _his_ world view. Let me take you through a thought-experiment.

Forget for a moment everything you have ever heard or experienced. You are now a speck of dust floating around with no reflective-of-the-world thoughts, in fact you have no thoughts at all. About anything. In an instant, you turn into a human being. Now, as you begin to explore the world around you, you have to make assumptions. From one of my first philosophy courses, I remember my professor slowly moving one of his feet forward, tapping the ground in front of him -to make sure it would hold his weight. The point he was making was that, we make assumptions about the most minute things. We assume that the ground in front of us is stable and will carry us -and so we do not hesitate to walk with strong stride from point A to point B. Now, in thunderf00t’s world view, he can concede to that ‘The universe exists’, because it is something we have to _assume_ and probably should because it helps us understand something about everything around us. The important point being, he cannot _know_ if the universe exists, and to a certain extent, it doesn’t matter -it is an assumption we have to make regardless of if it is true or not. Let’s make more assumptions, ‘I exist’, ‘other people exist’ and let me add another two assumptions; I feel and think, others feel and think. Personally, I stop adding assumptions when they have no utility; when an assumption would not gain me a wider perspective of how the world works around me. For example, it is useful to assume that I feel and think, as well as, others feel and think -because it makes social encounters just _that_ much easier. Now, another important thing with assumptions is this; I can make any assumption I like, but, it usually requires me to assume a bunch of other things. For example, the assumption “I think and feel” must be preceded by assumptions such as, physical materia exists, there exist an entity within my physical boundary that I use to be able to think and feel. Assumptions are only accepted if they can help us understand the world, for example, assuming that a spaghetti monster exists is redundant because it doesn’t help me understand the world any better. Ok, enough introduction of assumptions I think, onwards to the mistake religious people make about atheists.

A religious person would say “God exists”. For an atheist, the number of assumptions to be made about the world to accept this assumption are far too many. We must assume that not only does physical materia exist but also non-physical materia, we must not only assume there is an entity that can see/hear/feel etc. everything but also that this entity can decide what to and not to do with us humans -we then must assume creation, maintenance, changes etc.. These assumptions are far from all of the assumptions we have to make in order to accomodate “God exists” in our assumption-structure of the world. Add to this that, in our world view, we are already making a lot of assumptions on how to find things out about the world -assuming that mathematics can say something about the world, assume that physics can say something about the world and so on. The reason we would rather assume that Physics can tell us things about the world instead of a God, is at least binary. One, relying on Physics instead of God involves far fewer assumptions about the world, but more importantly, two; the reliance on Physics has utility in that we can test and see if an assumptions holds up or not. This is what “prediction” or “predictive power” is all about. Assuming that Physics can tell us something about the world, is strengthened by that we can use the tools taught by Physics to answer questions about the world. Why are we stuck on earth? Why does a rock fall down if I drop it instead of float or fall up? Physics teaches us the assumption that there exist something called gravity, a concept we assume to exist. Why would we rely on this information? Well, because it has predictive power; it tells us something about the world that we can use to our advantage. Assuming that gravity exists is something we do everyday -without even doing it! We don’t open a window and walk straight out, because, we assume that gravity will pull us very quickly towards the ground and (depending on height) may kill us. Therefore, questions such as “do you exist?” cannot be answered; it is an assumption we make about the world that helps us live our lives, nothing more, nothing less. It is not true or false and it would not matter if it was true or false -because, _regardless_ if it is true or false, we _have to_ assume it because it is something that helps us live our lives -it has utility to assume it. However, assuming that “God exists”, does not help us understand anything over and above the toolbox that the sciences provide for us. Morals exist without God, love exists without God also hate exists without God. Alright, enough about explaining what religious people often do not understand about atheists. Let me flip the table over.

Unfortunately, these mistakes in understanding people we have in front of us is far from unique to religious people. Atheists do it to a large extent as well, and, it does not help us to understand each other. An atheist usually holds the misconception that ‘you’ believe something that ‘I’ don’t, and imaginary friend that will hold your hand through adulthood -and we say -prove it! Smiling smuggishly, sniggering to ourselves. Well, this is an error exactly mirroring the one religious people make about atheists. The error we make is to assume that the way in which we find out information about the world is the best way for _other world views_ to find out information _about their assumptions_. _This is not true_. We therefore make the same mistake by asking a question that cannot be answered from within a religious person’s world view. I.e. in the same way that “is it true?” is an unanswerable question, so is “prove it”. In conclusion, it is not fair to ask of another world view to do something that can only be done from one of those world views. It involves the assumption that one’s world view is the only ‘true’ one, from which other’s should be judged and hence make the mistake of mistaking assumptions for true or false. Bad atheist!

Apart from these philosophical-specific issues, the psychological and societal specific issues are that these types of discussions _only_ contribute to _one thing_, misunderstanding. Atheists scoffing at the ignorance of religious people and religion devaluing moral character of atheism. I have long tried to ameliorate the difficulties that arise between religious and scientific minded people (no, they are not mutually exclusive groupings). I have tried to explain the above numerous times to both camps without succeeding in building a bridge. Then I read this; I’m Christian unless you’re gay. and realized something absolutely terrible (bar for a moment that that OP contains subject matter far outweighing what mine does).

When having read both that piece and the responses to it, it became abundantly clear that Dan Pearce had succeeded where so many fail. Where Richard Dawkins and other more aggressive atheists have failed. Dan Pearce succeeded in building a bridge between two vastly different world views. It is a feat in itself. Something I know from experience is such an extreme catalyst between religious and atheists, is the matter of homosexuality. I started in much more modest differences and failed miserably, why the #”¤! did Dan Pearce succeed? The reasons are many and he succeeded in combining them in such a way that fostered understanding for the two world-views, separately, but at the same time, with the same words. Dan used ‘simple’ rhetoric, natural, everyday language that everyone understands. He levels himself, first, lower than one thinks of oneself, secondly, he puts himself off of the continuum of where he first places Westboro Baptist Church and then Christians and atheists. He thus ingeniously pushes religious and atheists closer together on the continuum by using an extreme reference point. He abides to universal feelings like love and hate, exemplifies them both and levels you and I down to his level, the level in which we are all human. It is a lesson in humility and we are all in the same boat. We have all made ourselves feel better by beating down on others -regardless of what we have targeted with our hateful comments. He then pushes his point home with powerful conviction; everyone has a right and wrong, but really it doesn’t matter because we cannot change others by hating them. He does not contend to change others by loving them, but changing ourselves by loving others. We don’t have to resort to the trivial and detrimental comment-flinging, it doesn’t help me, myself. Showing others love does not mean one condones a behaviour or disposition that we think is right or wrong. Showing love to someone does not promote or deny something someone is, rather, it promotes ourselves in who we are. Ultimately, he sums it up himself (please read his whole OP by the link provided above);

“Because what you’ll find, and I promise you this, is that the more you put your arm around those that you might naturally look down on, the more you will love yourself. And the more you love yourself, the less need you’ll ever have to find fault or be better than others. And the less we all find fault or have a need to be better than others, the quicker this world becomes a far better place to live.”

Dan Pearce set a new standard in the rhetoric of fostering understanding for fellow human beings.

More responses, this time Daniel Simons/Dave Nussbaum

Daniel Simons
“The expectancy effects study is rhetorically powerful but proves little. In their Experiment 1, Doyen et al. tested the same hypothesis about priming stereotypes that Bargh tested. But in Experiment 2, Doyen et al. tested a hypothesis about experimenter expectancies. That is a completely different hypothesis. The second study tells us that experimenter expectancies can affect walking speed. But walking speed surely can be affected by more than one thing. So Experiment 2 does not tell us to what extent, if any at all, differences in walking speed were caused by experimenter expectancies in Bargh’s experiment (or for that matter, anywhere else in the natural world outside of Doyen’s lab). This is the inferential error of confusing causes of effects with effects of causes. Imagine that Doyen et al. had clubbed the subjects in the elderly-prime condition in the knee; most likely that would have slowed them down. But would we take that as evidence that Bargh et al. had done the same?”

I was waiting for this to be said. Thank you, sir.

“The inclusion of Experiment 2 served a strong rhetorical function, by planting in the audience’s mind the idea that the difference between Bargh vs Doyen Exp 1 was due to expectancy effects (and Ed Yong picked up and ran with this suggestion by referring to Clever Hans). But scientifically, all it shows is that expectancy effects can influence the dependent variable in the Bargh experiment. That’s not nothing, but anybody who already believes that experiments need to be double-blind should have seen that coming. If we had documentary evidence that in the actual 1996 studies Bargh et al. did not actually eliminate expectancy effects, that would be relevant. (We likely never will have such evidence; see next point.) But Experiment 2 does not shed nearly as much light as it appears to”

Which was an idea popularised by Ed Yong. Nevertheless, it is a free-standing experiment including assumptions that were not present in Bargh’s study.

“That is, just because the original study could reject the null and the replication could not, that doesn’t mean that the replication is significantly different from the original study. If you are going to say you failed to replicate the original result, you should conduct a test of that difference.

As far as I can tell neither Doyen et al. nor Pashler et al. did that. So I did. I converted each study’s effect to an r effect size and then comparing the studies with a z test of the difference between independent rs, and indeed Doyen et al. and Pashler et al. each differed from Bargh’s original experiments. So this doesn’t alter the present discussion. But as good practice, the replication reports should have reported such tests.”

Again an insightful view of current events.

Dave Nussbaum contributes greatly to the understanding of conceptual and direct replication and the importance of these concepts. It also comes closer to my own opinion on why the Perception-Behaviour Link-experiments would be hard to ‘replicate’.

It is motivating to see the discourse focuses more and more on underlying issues rather than the symptoms. I am inclined to, still, believe that the controversy surrounding the specific Bargh study has to do with the underlying theory. I am however leaving that in my literature review, time to focus on the presentation of it instead ^^.

Matthew Lieberman’s response and solution

There was a solution posted in a recently started blog by Matthew Lieberman that focuses on direct/conceptual replications. His solution is indeed a very interesting one; add to the curriculum of graduate students in their first or second year that they replicate findings of studies previously nominated to be so. While comments on it are pessimistic (with justified reasoning), I do hope it resonates within the scholarly psychology community.

A personal take on Lieberman’s response is that I probably would not have minded to see this added to my own curriculum. I may not be all too pleased but considering how much one would learn by replicating something that has worked before, I may not be too peeved about it. Also, getting a name on a publication would be a pretty sweet bonus. Of my severely limited insight into other universities ‘caring and nurturing’ of aspiring scientists, some are better (and some worse) in picking up their students and involving them in the ongoing research. Maybe Lieberman’s idea would go a decent amount of the way to attenuate this issue as well.

Ed Yong’s response and a few comments

Ed Yong’s initial coverage* of Doyen’s** and Bargh’s*** study was, in my opinion, quite brutal. I have been taught through my undergraduate to criticise constructively and I do not think the initial post has the depth to do so. For example, a close look at Doyen’s study indicates that one of the few last alternatives at explaining participant’s slower walking speed was experimenter expectation (and a very well conducted piece of research to demonstrate it). The difference in the walk-fast/expect-fast condition was explained by the difference between manual and automatic measuring, not so in the walk-slow/expect-slow condition. I wrote this in my previous blog entry too, but with a different emphasis. This finding means that an environmental stimuli (experimenter expectation manifested in subtle behaviour) was internalised by the participants and subsequently affected observable behaviour (walking slower). This entails that the Doyen study, in fact, supports the original proposition of the Perception-Behaviour Link. This mitigates my criticism of Bargh’s work, since, the theory from which he based his 1996 experiment was conceptually replicated in the Doyen study. The PBL is not mentioned in Ed Yong’s initial coverage.

In Ed Yong’s reply**** to Bargh, he mentions Doyen to “[have] timed volunteers with infrared censors rather than a stopwatch” But they timed both with sensors and manually. This was one of the central reasons that they came to the conclusion that experimenter expectation was the only alternative left to explain their result.

It does strike me from having reviewed large parts of the literature surrounding priming that the published articles are all conceptual replications. The studies following Bargh et al. (1996) have differences in methodology to that study. The issue that has been raised in comments to Bargh’s reply to Ed Yong is that “purer” replications that have not given the same results are subject to the file-drawer phenomenon. I.e. publishers have not accepted them and so they’ve been put in the file-drawer. The issue with this statement is obviously that it is very hard to know (for an outsider like myself) if publishers have denied these studies because they show null-results (not very exciting and from comments it seems there are other rather valid reasons for them not to publish these) or if they contain errors of various types (making them unpublishable).

In either case, I believe I argue in my literature review, strongly, for the theory underlying priming (the Perception-Behaviour Link) but at the same time believe that researchers are getting ahead of themselves and testing advanced hypotheses, when really what this theory needs is the grunt-work of establishing even its simplest tenets. Be that an actual replication of the methodology in Bargh et al. (1996), even though I believe there exist other research more suitable to exemplify the Perception-Behaviour Link.

I should have chosen another topic to do my 30-page literature review on.

*http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/notrocketscience/2012/01/18/primed-by-expectations-%e2%80%93-why-a-classic-psychology-experiment-isn%e2%80%99t-what-it-seemed/
**http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0029081
***http://www.yale.edu/acmelab/articles/bargh_chen_burrows_1996.pdf
****http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/notrocketscience/2012/03/10/failed-replication-bargh-psychology-study-doyen/

Bargh, Doyen and conclusions thereof.

I have just witnessed an interesting phenomenon.

I am concurrently to writing this blog-post, writing a literature review on priming and the Perception-Behaviour Link*. Another paper whom closely replicated the findings of Bargh et al. (1996)*, Doyen et al. (2012)**, were unable to replicate findings as well as provide an interesting demonstration of experimenter expectation. It is however presumptious to assume that the original literature* then also is explained by this bias. The reason is given in a reply by Bargh*** to the Doyen study, basically stating that the experiment was run as a blind study and so experimenter expectation can be safely ruled out. While Bargh’s reply unfortunately contains personal attacks and evidence towards being technologically unwilling, he is defended by others in that his experiment _has_ been replicated successfully and that one study cannot refute several made on the same topic. The studies given (by others than Bargh -he did not give any studies as support in his criticism) as support for this claim are these; Elderly prime effect on simulated driving speed, Gay male prime effect on hostility, elderly or youth prime effect on walking time and accessibility as precursor to goal-fulfilment and high vs. low self-conscious difference in being primed by an elderly stereotype on walking speed (xps 2 & 3). I have reviewed one of these in my literature review and it is at best a conceptual replication with several issues in methodology and statistical interpretation (specifics available on request).

In my book, it is not enough to conceptually replicate, since one is then stuck with reviewing another piece of research with its own flaws and fallacies. Granted, Doyen comes close to replicating but did differ on the point of blind experimenters (it was one of the manipulations in Doyen). The assumption was that Bargh’s work was non-blind (something I came to the conclusion of as well, although I’ve read the paper a gazillion times). This was not the case, and hence, it is also a conceptual replication. What _is_ interesting with the Doyen study is that it still supports the PBL, albeit unintentionally. The most important statistic presented is the believe-slow-walking speed comparison between automatic and manual measurement. Believe-fast-walking’s significant difference was removed when considering both automatic and manual, not so for believe-slow. A last alternative for this significant difference is then experimenter expectation. The thing is though, experimenter expectation is also an environmental stimuli that is unconsciously internalised and evidently had an effect on observable behaviour! Well, this is what the Preception-Behaviour Link strictly posits.

Again, it is a bit of a shame that many of the arguments Bargh uses in his criticism of the Doyen study are arbitrary, unsupported and, on occasion, false in light of other research (even some from the area of priming)****. It does however not reflect on his prior research. In conclusion, Doyen does not specifically cut Bargh’s research down, but rather, introduces another concept able to be accounted for within the Perception-Behaviour Link’s framework.

On a second note, if you have unpublished research on the replication of Bargh et al.’s 1996 study, I would very much like to read it. I believe it is of central importance to be open-minded to one’s own fallacies and others’ criticism (even if I very much like the Perception-Behaviour Link theory), the only way is forward and it is only obstructed when self-preserving opinions and values are set before empirical research.

*Bargh, J.A., Chen, M., & Burrows, L. (1996). Automaticity of social behaviour: Direct effects of trait construct and stereotype activation on action. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 72, 230-244.
**Doyen, S., Klein, O., Pichon, C., & Cleeremans, A. (2012). Behavioural priming: It’s all in the mind, but whose mind? doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0029081
***Bargh, J.A. (2012, March 5). The natural unconscious: Nothing in their heads. [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-natural-unconscious/201203/nothing-in-their-heads.´
****See comment section of Bargh’s blog post, specifically the one referring to Assimilation and Contrasting (which is found in Dijksterhuis, A., Spears, R., Postmes, T., Stapel, D.A., van Knippenberg, A., & Scheepers, D. (1998). Seeing one thing and doing another: Contrast effects in automatic behaviour. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 75, 862-871.)

Kent – Ensammast i Sverige

Ner från minus femtio grader
Mannen bredvid stinker svett
Vi går ner i varma mörker
Jag gör dig arvlös på en servett
Och jag ser dig på terminalen
Som en hägring en Prada-klon
Jag har gömt behov i sjalen
För just en sån här otänkbar situation.

Jag gick långsamt fram mot bordet
Med min avvaktande blick
Över munnen mitt i orden
slog du till så hårt det gick
Och jag såg hur du tyckte om det
Från nästan bottenlös tristess
kom det kärleksvarma våldet
och vinet spills blir bleka rorschach-test.

Jag ser nån vid ett rödljus
Samma NK-paraply
Och nånstans i min plånbok
glöder en post-it från -97
Där tio kulspetsblå små siffror
skriker våga utan ord
Men ögonblicket glider undan
som skuggorna från små grå lätta moln.

Jag ser din rygg från taxin
fast jag vet att du har flytt
från det kalla, tysta landet
Jag stampar torkarbladens rytm
Och jag minns ingenting som hände
men jag kallsvettas ändå
VM i att hålla färgen tyck synd om mig
jag är ensammast i Sverige.

Och jag drog med dig i mitt fall
Och sen gled jag bara undan
Så förlåt, förlåt för allt
För min förbannade kluvna tunga
Jag har ett foto någonstans
Där vi är drottningar och kungar
Nu ligger bilder överallt
där gamla ansikten är unga
Och jag har letat som besatt
efter känslor som är försvunna
Och det har varit en lång, lång natt
men jag är glad att mina tårar
är behärskade och lugna.

Vad jag presenterar är en version av hur man kan tolka låten. Jag känner att denna tolkning enbart delvis stämmer, där finns ett par inkonsekventa sångrader om man accepterar nedan tolkning.

Den inleds klassiskt Kentlyrik, “Ner från minus femtio grader”, antyder på ett förhållande mellan två situationer där ena partnern (i ett förhållande) är oerhört kylig men sen går till normal temperatur (dvs bete sig vanligt), men då blir partnern ändå inte snällare/bättre för han-“mannen bredvid stinker svett”, en metafor för att han är en ulv i fårakläder, “bredvid” används som ett svagt ord för mannen i hennes liv. “Vi går ner i varma mörker”, värme positivt, mörker negativt, en sorts falsk positivitet för att visa att det är en trygghet att leva med honom (som med vilken annan partner skulle jag tro) men en falsk sådan för värmen är inte god, värmen finns i mörkret.

“Jag gör dig arvlös på en servett”, kan vara att den är så pass betydelselös att man inte bemödar sig med annat än att ‘känslomässigt göra någon arvlös’ och det på en servett. Hon ser sin man “på terminalen”, bara ett annat sätt att säga när hon ser honom (tänker på honom) eller att tryggheten han ger henne är en ‘Prada-klon’, innehar inget annat än ytlig pålitlighet. Han “ser dig på terminalen som en hägring, en Prada klon”. Nästan bokstavligt, en Prada-klon har inget värde förutom att utsidan liknar något som har värde. Därför blir ‘en Prada-klon’ en metafor för en hägring. Och en person som är så svag och falsk som en som slår sin partner -är lik en ‘Prada klon’. “Jag har gömt behov i sjalen, för just en sån här otänkbar situation”. Det som händer senare i låt-texten är en otänkbar situation (anspelar på våld i hemmet), dem ‘gömda behoven’ är överlevnadstankesätt eller överlevnadsbeteenden som gör det uthärdligt att stanna i förhållandet.

Man landar i andra versen med “över munnen mitt i orden slog du till så hårt det gick”, indikerar ett fysiskt aggressivt förhållande. Alternativt kan det menas med en verbal våldsamhet (som är lika illa som fysiskt våld). Men senare i vers två så går dem in specifikt i en situation där det “kärleksvarma våldet” gillas av motparten kanske grunden till det är för det är “bottenlös tristess” där någonting, vad som helst, behövs för att göra en grå vardag färgsprakande -även om det är destruktivitet som utlöser det. “vinet spills och blir till Rorschach test”, emotionen ska väl antydas vara att beteendet som ledde till att vinet spilldes ut beskriver någon som skulle behöva göra ett Rorschach test.

Därefter i vers tre får man en glimt av en tankebana av partnern som blir slagen, en dröm om en person, en svunnen kärlek. Först nämns personen för att en annan har “samma NK-paraply” och därför påminner om personen. Också “någonstans i min plånbok” ligger en “post-it från -97” där det finns ett nummer till denna person. Sedan använder dem sig av kontrast för att öka den känslomässiga betoningen på “skriker” genom att avsluta föregående mening med “kulspetsblå små siffror”. Något litet som är så starkt känslomässigt att den “skriker våga utan ord”. Men såklart så “ögonblicket glider undan” och med en metafor till “små grå lätta moln” lämnar vi den tankebanan.

I vers fyra åter igen får vi en glimt av tankebanan, en vilja att ‘råka stöta på’ personen som partnern drömmer om får denne att “ser din rygg från taxin” men hon/han vet att han/hon inte är där för “du har flytt från det kalla tysta landet”. Här trängar en oerhört stark känsla igenom, ‘det kalla tysta landet’ där våld är ignorerat (av kalla personer) och är förbisett (av tysta personer) -det är en metafor för Sveriges befolknings synsätt på våld i hemmet samtidigt som det är en känslosam bild av Sverige klimatmässigt. Sedan “stampar torkarbladens rytm” är en dold metafor för att det regnar och hon/han står och tittar bort mot ryggen hon/han trodde var honom/henne. Regn som i så många andra låtar menas naturligtvis att det är ledsamt, ensamt.

I vers fyra späs bilden av svenskar på genom en metafor till ett “VM i att hålla färgen”, den som håller mest inne och inte visar sina sanna känslor vinner. Men trots det, individuellt, vill vi att folk ska “tyck synd om mig för jag är ensammast i Sverige”. “Och jag drog med dig i mitt fall och sen gled jag bara undan” anspelar på att personen tappade fotfästet och istället för att ta hand om det ensam så drog on/han med sig partnern och när dem nått botten så lämnade han/hon partnern att ta hand om sig själv. “så förlåt förlåt för allt för min förbannade kluvna tunga”, en enkel en, bedjan om ursäkt för alla lögner (som antagligen var det som drog dem båda neråt). Sen sätter denna mening även stämningen väldigt lågt för att sedan i nästa vers börja längta till en svunnen tid med hopp och kärlek.

I vers fem, berättaren menar att hon/han har ett foto någonstans på personen (mentalt i minnet eller fysiskt i ett gammalt fotoalbum), ett positivt minne eller ett foto i en positiv situation med denna människan för i fotot är dem “drottningar och kungar”. “Det har varit en lång lång natt” kan återigen tolkas fysiskt att personen var uppe hela natten och letade efter gamla bilder eller bara en anspelning på att hon har letat länge tidsmässigt eller att det kändes som en evighet för personen. “nu ligger bilder överallt” anspelar på ett nästan kaotiskt letande efter personen och menar sedan att fotona är från en svunnen tid (känsloförknippat med en längtan tillbaka) för att “gamla ansikten är unga” -han är gammal nu men bilderna visar unga människor. Och dem positiva känslorna som var förknippade med den personen “känslor som är försvunna”, är nu borta men det hindrar inte henne från att leta efter det som en gång var så positivt i hennes liv, kärlek (och förmodligen utan våld). Och den enda tröst ‘den ensammaste personen i Sverige’ har är att hennes “tårar är behärskade och lugna”. Hon säger att ja hon är ledsen och deprimerad, utgör sig till martyr, men låtsas som om det är ok och bra när det egentligen inte är det, för att erkänna detta för sig själv skulle kräva att hon ändrar sin situation och inser vad hon har accepterat hänt mot henne, vilket hon inte klarar av.

Fruktansvärt emotionell sång som kortfattat handlar om en försvunnen kärlek där personen nu är i ett våldsamt förhållande och längtar tillbaka till tiden med den försvunna kärleken. Låtens text visar också en kort men stark bild av ignorans och förbiseende av inställningen vi har till våld i hemmet i Sverige. Helt fantastisk låt.