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Published:May 3rd, 2010 09:12 EST

Why People Like Conveniently Numbered Lists of Things They Like

By Andy Wright

1.  `Organization` since the dawn of office administration and clerical work, organization has reigned supreme in the working world and now it`s come out swinging in the way we look everything else.  Now we try to force our kids to clean their rooms and keep our prescription pills segregated from one another as though we don`t prefer to mix them and enjoy a longer than average nap.  It is no wonder that we list things we like and vote on them and encrust our faces with stale smiles when we find a four page spread of easily read lists.

2.       `Controversial Ratings` trouble making is awesome.  People hate being crossed and hate being told they`re wrong; writers know this and molest your gullible bone, or gullibone", or just gullible bone.  If I wanted to talk about the ten best deities of all time, knowing that the majority of my audience was Christian based, and I gave formal God three out of five magic wands, putting him (caution: mind blower " or her) behind Krishna and Zeus, then I know people will not only read my awesomely convenient list, but they would also get mad, and the controversy would only serve to bring about a greater audience. 

3.       `They`re not long enough to make people feel bored` who reads books anymore?  I know I`m not a doctor.

4.       `They don`t make people feel stupid` sometimes people forget what they`re reading after they`ve been reading for awhile.  I can`t tell you how many times I`ve been reading furniture directions or nutrition facts, and I`ve thought wait "what?   It`s all the verbiage and punctuation that aggravates the eyes, causing the brain to feel lonesome and inattentive.

5.       `They resemble the Commandments` laws, rules, morals, and other things people live by are always easily numbered and placed in a mouth wateringly organized structure.  If the Bill of Rights was written in paragraph form without bullet points and carried on like a Tom Clancy novel, I would be lighting more things on fire and forcing things upon others.

6.       `The subtitles aren`t necessarily tied to the following summary` Log Cabin Republicans, am I right or what?  I have a couple gay friends.

7.       `Topical` they always address what we`re thinking but never saying.  I love ranking the top 15 movies of the summer when August 29th comes around, but I never say it aloud for anyone to hear, so luckily I have places like Entertainment Weekly to turn to.  Next stop, politics.  All of life`s problems should probably be solved by well organized lists that offend most and draw in greater audiences.

8.   `They always end in well rounded numbers` they always end in numbers we like, such as 5, 10, 15, 23, 101; rarely do they end in what is referred to, in some circles, as a stupid number.  Stupid numbers include 6, 16, 26, 96, basically anything ending in 6.

9.      `They look great next to pictures` pictures compliment everything, even more pictures.  Pictures of people, hopefully celebrities, draw in the eye because nobody likes to look at ugly things, so if you add pictures next to a list, you will be giving people the best of both worlds: pretty eye candy and words that will make them feel accomplished for reading.