I bring to your attention recently-published findings from the Center for Higher Learning at the University of Newer New Mexico. A team of UNNM researchers believe they have discovered the basis of the phenomenon that most of us call “vibes” — the human ability to transmit positive (and often negative) thoughts in order to influence another’s emotions and/or behavior and/or the outcome of an upcoming event.
Vibes are most likely to be detected in sports bars and hospital waiting rooms, said UNNM neurophysicist Lionel Trane. “Wherever there are strong emotions or intense longing is a good place to find vibes,” Dr. Trane explained between his studied sips of white zinfandel. “Take singles bars. Our team observed that people who frequent singles bars are finely attuned to good and bad vibes given off from other patrons. We ventured that the transmission, reception and interpretation of vibes leads to fewer false moves and rejections and more satisfying encounters. We thought that some interesting physics might be behind this.”
So Dr. Trane and a cooperative cadre of graduate students dedicated themselves (thanks to a grant from the Templeton Foundation) to attend singles bars three nights a week for an entire semester in order to better study this phenomenon.
To detect vibes, the students used a device designed by Dr. Trane and his fellow research associate Wes Crusher. The detector is essentially a small parabolic dish that fits on top of a Pittsburgh Pirates baseball cap worn by the student. When the student entered a venue, signals from the dish would be transmitted to a van parked outside, where Dr. Trane and Mr. Crusher recorded and monitored the data stream while fending off the suspicions of the bouncer.
Performing a study in this setting was not without its difficulties, according to Dr. Trane. As he explained, many of the vibes they picked up were of the variety, “Who is that guy with the dish on his head?” Trane and Crusher spent an entire hunker-down weekend filtering out such spurious signals, along with the static generated whenever the receiver was splashed with beer or was jostled by angry subjects who discovered their vibes were being intercepted.
After the research team eliminated the bad data — along with all the other data that did not support their hypothesis — they submitted the remaining signals to spectrum analysis. “It was full spectrum,” said Mr. Crusher. “None of that phasers-on-stun stuff — this was serious business.” Crusher shared with us their analysis of the vibe diagrams (below):
“Vibes have chracteristic colors. Green means hope,” Crusher said. “Red means red. This is the most convincing evidence of vibes ever.” But Trane objected. “Sorry, Mr. Crusher. Red means wolf. We discussed this at the campfire last night and you agreed with me.”
We watched as Trane and Crusher then grappled with each other on the dirt floor. On an impulse, I asked Trane whether Carlos Castaneda’s experiences were real or imagined. Trane looked at me with hardened eyes and then suddenly grasped Crusher’s midsection, entwining himself into its glowing emanations and hurling himself into the nether.
I asked Crusher one last question. “It’s the thought that counts,” he answered cryptically, then he turned and walked into the desert night, leaving us with only the vibe diagrams and our fragile memories.