Your physical distance from someone, it is said, is indicative of how close you are in other ways. With this in mind, David Seah introduces the Social Yardstick:
Physically, The Yardstick is a measuring device that collapses to fit in your pocket. The prototype here is constructed out of popsicle sticks and packing tape. Each popsicle stick is labeled as listed below:
- Acquaintance This is someone you know only slightly.
- Co-Worker Someone you work with regularly, but probably not daily. Casual friends too.
- Co-Conspirator Someone you are working with, perhaps sharing a hidden agenda or personal goal. You’re close, but not too close.
- Best Friend Someone you’re pretty close with. They’re inside your personal space.
- Close Family That is, family members that you actually like.
- Sweetie You’ve slept together. Or really want to.
- You This is the end of The Yardstick you hold.
Use of The Yardstick is commendably simple:
To use The Social Yardstick, merely unfold its length and stretch between yourself and the person you are standing near. Read the label on the segment that is closest to the other person, and adjust your distance appropriately.
This strikes me as far too useful to be dismissed as mere “chindōgu.”
(Via Bill Peschel.)