Show me your Likes, and I will tell you who you are. A study of 38,000 volunteers conducted by Cambridge University found that your Facebook Likes were a pretty powerful tool when it came to predicting numerous aspects of your personality. Yes, a lot of the correlations they found were fairly obvious: Drinkers were often fans of the statement “Dear Liver: Thanks, You’re A Champ.” But others were more subtle. You didn’t have to say you were gay. You just had to say you liked Kurt Hummel and Wicked, and the correlator could fill in the blanks.
In other words, this is absolutely everything you need to know about everyone. Bind the concluding table as a seal on your hand.
Some of these Likes are just plain weird.
But the rest of them are absolutely golden.
One of the best predictors of being satisfied with your life? Liking Sarah Palin. This is the root of so many of my problems! Next comes Glenn Beck. Jesus and Jesus Christ are farther down the list. At the very bottom, but still in the top 10? “Pride and Prejudice.”
Sometimes I love the Internet. Religion doesn’t do it for you? Try Jane Austen.
The Likes related to unhappiness offered a more subtle picture.
Dissatisfied with life? You probably like Hawthorne Heights. Here is a hint: Stop listening to Hawthorne Heights.
Liking science also correlates to unhappiness. Perhaps this is causation, not correlation. It is tough to be alive today and like science. It keeps getting beaten up and removed from textbooks and having its lunch money taken, or at least its NASA funding.
Other fun ways to break the ice and learn a lot about the people you are talking to?
“Hey, are you often confused after waking up from naps?” is a much politer and less direct way of saying “Hello, sir, are you heterosexual?” — my usual icebreaker.
(I’ve been told my first-date conversation needs work.)
Some are obvious. Christians like the Bible. Muslims like “I’m A Muslim and I’m Proud.”
Some less so. I had no idea smokers were so ready to snap!
Nonsmokers are oddly likely to be fond of the following: “That Spider Is More Scared Than U Are Oh Really Did It Tell U That,” “Honda” and “Move Out Of The Way Children I’ve Been Waiting 11 Years To See Toy Story 3.”
Smokers, on the other hand, prefer the following statements: “I Always Accept The Terms And Conditions Without Reading Them” and “I Bottle Everything Up Until I Finally Snap.” Also, they like Under Armour.
So, if you see someone in Under Armour scrolling rapidly through the terms and conditions — could be a smoker! Get away before he snaps!
This is just more proof that anyone who tells you, point-blank, that he likes Nietzsche is a jerk. Want to impress your date? Don’t bother quoting Nietzsche. People who liked Nietzsche, the study found, tended to be aggressive, uncooperative jerks. Cooperative people? They liked “The Book of Mormon.”
Open and artistic? You’ll love Oscar Wilde.
Not so much? NASCAR.
This is about right. If Oscar Wilde and NASCAR, and all of their varied connotations, ever were to shake hands, both of them might disappear.
If you’re spontaneous, you’ll love Wes Anderson, Omegle and “Not Dying,” in that order.
Conscientious? Try “Accounting.”
The Extrovert/Introvert lists are almost a parody. Extroverts love Beer Pong, Flip Cup and Modeling. Introverts love RPGS, Roleplaying Games and FanFiction.net. In the categories of Things You Weren’t Expecting To Hear In Either Column, Extroverts also love Michael Jordan and Chris Tucker, while Introverts go for Voltaire and Terry Pratchett. If you’re a real, hard-core introvert, you will emit sentences like, “Well, before I start the RPG, I’d better go post my Voltaire/Terry Pratchett crossover on FanFiction.net,” whereas your extrovert will say something like, “Beer Pong! Flip cup! RAARRGH!”
If you’re Neurotic, you’ll Like “Sometimes I Hate Myself” and Kurt Cobain. Stable and Well Adjusted? “Business Administration.”
If you want to tell if someone is, well, not the brightest person in the drawer, ask if he likes Jason Aldean. That’s the number-one correlation. If you encounter someone muttering “The only thing I love more than riding to Sephora on my Harley-Davidson is Bret Michaels and Being a Mom” — well, maybe that person has other redeeming qualities, or maybe you’re lucky and that person didn’t Like any of these things on Facebook, but otherwise, that correlates pretty strongly with low IQ.
“You like Jason Aldean?” you can say. “Well, you must be an idiot.”
You can brandish the study, as I am now in the habit of doing. “See,” you can say. “There’s a study.”
The way of identifying Old People on Facebook through Likes, other than the fact that they keep typing their searches as their statuses while holding the mouse incorrectly, is their fondness for “Cup of Joe For A Joe,” the Coffee Party Movement, and Dr. Mehmet Oz. Also, they love “The Closer,” for some reason.
Young people, on the other hand, love “293 Things To Do In Class When You Are Bored” and hate their ID photos.
“Do you love Dollar General?” is a shorter way of asking “Do you have a lot of friends?”
“Hey, are you a fan of Walking With Your Friend & Randomly Pushing Them Into Someone/Something?” can tell you if someone has few friends. Well, yeah. You want more friends? Stop pushing them into things.
Heterosexual ladies like Thinking of Something And Laughing Alone, while homosexual ladies prefer “Not Being Pregnant” and the observation that “Sometimes I Just Lay In Bed And Think About Life.” It’s less strongly correlated than the predictors for being a gay man — but hey, you might as well try it. “So, do you sometimes just lay in bed and think about life?” at least could segue into a smooth opener.
People in relationships are so stereotypical — they love “Scrapbooking” and “Weight Watchers.” Singles prefer “The Hunger Games” and Maria Sharapova.
Drinkers, if their Facebook likes are any indication, have more fun. They love “Watching Karma Bite The Person You Hate Right In The [Patoot]” and “Meeting Someone Who Is Also Drunk And Immediately Becoming Best Friends.” They are also more likely to be Tattoo Lovers and want to express gratitude to their livers (Dear Liver: Thanks, You’re A Champ.)
Non-drinkers are more sedate in their habits: “When I’m Home Alone And I Hear A Noise I Freeze And Listen For Ages.” Possibly they are also younger, given that many of their most-liked statuses are class related. (“I Hate Going Back To School After The Holidays.”)
Want to know if someone likes drugs? Ask how he feels about Causes.com, Lyrics That Actually Mean Something or That Awkward Moment When You Get In The Van And There’s No Candy.
The drug-free favor good clean fun like “Sliding on Floors With Your Socks On,” “Awkwardly Trying To Run With A Backpack” and have deep thoughts like “Wouldn’t It Be Ironic If You Choked On A Life Saver.” I should note that one factor we aren’t controlling for is age — schoolchildren not yet ready to experiment with illegal or legal substances are more likely to spend a lot of time wandering around (or awkwardly running) with a backpack. But hey, it’s science!
If you want to know if he does drugs, don’t just ask. Say, “Hey, wouldn’t it be ironic if you choked on a LIFE SAVER?” and see how enthusiastic his response is.
Here are the smartest-sounding sentences in the world:
“I love curly fries and the sound of Morgan Freeman’s voice — which reminds me of my other love, thunderstorms — almost as much as I love ‘The Daily Show’ and Science. But not too much science. Just enough ‘To Kill A Mockingbird!’ ”
(Likes correlated with high IQ included Morgan Freeman’s voice, thunderstorms, curly fries, Mozart, “The Daily Show” and “To Kill A Mockingbird.”)
If you think it’s creepy when I do it, just wait until the advertisers get going.