"Gut Feelings"

D Town

Well-Known Member
I was listening to a story from BBC Trending titled "Does Airbnb Have a Race Problem?" and something that was said at the end struck a cord with me. I posted the pertinent sections here.


I see it so many times here. “Trust your gut, trust your gut.” It’s repeated like a mantra and treated like an infallible sixth sense and that can lead to folly. Our “guts” are our conscious and unconscious assumptions about a situation or person that is influenced by what we observe, past experiences, preconceived notions, all colored by our emotions. How you perceive a particular situation could be vastly different from the reality. I have observed this myself many times over the years. I have been asked to walk people out to their cars more than once because they “Saw someone suspicious” who turned out to be harmless when I found out who they were or I’ve been told about a “fights about to start” and go over only to find people speaking happily with one another. On this last one when I reported back that there was no issue the one who originally called me over continued to insist that there was in fact aggression about to occur. I stayed until the group hugged one another and parted ways. I could list many more.

Other cases have involved people such as Salaheddin Barhoum and Yassine Zaimi who were wrongly accused of being the Boston bombers, or Renisha McBride who was shot when she knocked on a man’s door in the early morning hours, or Guido Menzio who was taken off of a flight because he seemed to be muttering to himself and writing in a foreign language that frightened a woman, or Daljeet Singh who was accused of “acting weird”, speaking Arabic, and discussing a bomb. None of these people were a threat but people “trusted their gut”. More often than not, most people’s guts are wrong. It worries me when people seem to rely on them more than tangible facts they observe.

One of the strongest emotions we possess is fear. It can override many of our other senses and control us but many refuse to acknowledge or recognize this. I implore everyone to do so. Be brutally honest with yourself and look at situations more objectively.

It would be impossible and foolish to discount our gut completely. Being mindful of body language, being asked to do something dangerous, being called out to isolated surroundings, naked aggression or refusal to answer reasonable questions, recent reports of certain violent crimes in the area should all be red flags however someone’s general appearance, command of the English language, or where they live are not valid reasons to fear. Its tricky. Most of us fall into the trap of, “I don’t discriminate therefore the fear I’m feeling from my “gut” must mean SOMETHING is wrong.” If we honestly evaluate ourselves and situations we can at least lessen this problem and bring everyone a little closer.
 

maui

Well-Known Member
There really is not a lot of information to decide. I have just started using AirBnB so not a lot of feedback or references, BUT, have had mixed results, and the greatest deterrent I have seen is I am primarily currently looking for single nights on weekends. The feedback I have received was that a lot of properties don't like to make 1-night requests (especially 6 weeks out) as well as what is not stated in this are other things like what is the space set up. AirBnB is everything from shared space where you are basically in a spare bedroom, to standalone apartments.

The other thing not shown, is what do the profiles look like.

Sketchy people are sketchy people. I know ivy-league educated people who I would suspect have spent most of their life behind bars (and actually the world would probably be a better place for that) and others who look intimidating or are way dressed down and are the sweetest people.

I am sure there are other biases as well... The hot young girl probably has not problem getting a reservation, where the white guy with Aryan tats on his neck... maybe not so much.

This is the world of Tinder et al.. Swipe left, Swipe right. Most people will decide in a fraction of a second.
 

MiddleClassedOut

Well-Known Member
I wasn't biased before I started doing Lyft/Uber. Most demographics I have no problem with, but females of one particular race are 75% of the time very aggressive and extremely untrusting. I try to be extra nice, because I know it's the environment they live in that's done it to them.

There's another group that WILL NEVER tip, because tipping does not exist in their country.
 

Jim A

Member
Right or wrong, I'd still rather trust my gut about a situation or person. Not often my gut "lets me know anything". There have been times I get a "move/get out of area", "keep an eye on certain person", or some other message. "Gut feeling" is a psychological and physiological response to our surroundings. It's also termed as "gut instinct".

Having been in the military and in retail (combined equals 20 of the last 25 years), it has given that "sixth sense" about people a wide range of 'educational opportunity' to make a quick decision. (reflexive behavior as opposed to instinctive behavior)
 

simpsonsverytall

Well-Known Member
'Political Correctness' can range from a socially-necessary, natural part of society, to a weapon of influence that can be abused for potential benefits of power, control, and economy.

As a man trying to earn a living, I think the behavioral economics stuff is great stuff.
As a member of society/culture/family/etc, I am the opposite and I prefer natural stuff over the manipulated stuff.

If your spider senses are tingling, you need to take heed. Are you struggling with fear about the unknown/unfamiliar, or are you appropriately preparing your defenses for potential danger.

Know yourself and the situation, but you should be strong enough to have some personal instincts, and not rely on "how you should feel"

The other night, I was leaving Baltimore, got a request for "Jared" 1.6x surge. Decided to take the request.
Jared wasn't the stereotype you may associate with the name Jared, instead he was going home, to the 'hood.
Greeted me with how it was his first ride, and he put in the code and it should be free...
Maybe that has deterred uber drivers from starting the trip via App? Maybe it was just his sense of humor. Maybe that was a legit promo, and it's handled completely on the Pax side, and made for an awkward introduction in this particular case? Regardless, any time there is a grey area with PAX ID, it is legitimate cause for pause.
Turned out to be a good trip. He requested the hip-hop station, so I got to listen to hip-hop for a change. :cool:
Surge made up for having to navigate the city a bit for a trip that had a higher time/miles ratio.
I was happy to serve the passenger with a professional ride, but I was also alert, and aware of my surroundings, given the destination and the introduction.
 
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kevink

Well-Known Member
I once got called out to a park at 12:30 at night...took it since I figured maybe there was a gathering with alcohol involved. Get there and go to the pin which was an empty parking lot with little to no lighting and generally no signs of life otherwise. No other cars, etc, nothing. Just nothing but a picnic area and tennis courts. Gut feeling started screaming at me to just cancel and move on, which I did. Now, I don't know if anything untoward happened later at that location, or if the customer dropped the pin incorrectly, but I wasn't going to hang around to find out. Same customer pinged in about five minutes later for the same location. I did not accept...

Long story short, trust your gut. While it may not be an "educated decision" in the truest sense, it is informed by life experiences some of which may be obvious, and others of which are subconscious, but either way, there is a reason you get those feelings.
 

D Town

Well-Known Member
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #7
I once got called out to a park at 12:30 at night...took it since I figured maybe there was a gathering with alcohol involved. Get there and go to the pin which was an empty parking lot with little to no lighting and generally no signs of life otherwise. No other cars, etc, nothing. Just nothing but a picnic area and tennis courts. Gut feeling started screaming at me to just cancel and move on, which I did. Now, I don't know if anything untoward happened later at that location, or if the customer dropped the pin incorrectly, but I wasn't going to hang around to find out. Same customer pinged in about five minutes later for the same location. I did not accept...

Long story short, trust your gut. While it may not be an "educated decision" in the truest sense, it is informed by life experiences some of which may be obvious, and others of which are subconscious, but either way, there is a reason you get those feelings.
There is a remarkable difference between being pinged to an empty field in the middle of the night with nothing and no one around and what I'm talking about.
 
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