In his groundbreaking paper “Text Boxes Replace Thought Bubbles,” psychologist Dean Tomey showed convincingly that the time-honored thought bubble is steadily being replaced by the text box.
Tomey’s twenty-year study involved fMRI, EEG, and PET scans of thinking subjects of a variety of ages and cultures. These neuroimaging techniques revealed that 93% of thinkers over the age of forty habitually use thought bubbles for their thoughts. Of thinkers between the ages of twenty and thirty, the percentage of thinkers using thought bubbles decreased by an average of 9.2025% annually. Those below the age of twenty “almost invariably employ the text box as a container for their thoughts.” According to Tomey, “This data shows the impact of technology on the thought processes of younger thinkers.”
Are you concerned? Tomey claims that you should be:
Of particular concern to the thoughtful thinker should be the thought that thoughts contained in text boxes are invariably constrained by the rectilinear confines of the text box. Thought bubbles, in contrast, allow greater freedom to the thinker, and allow thoughts that are less . . . square. In fact, as I will argue in my conclusion, there is persuasive evidence that the increasing prominence of the text box in contemporary thought is largely responsible for climate change, opioid addiction, sexism, high taxes, big government, and the erosion of constitutional freedoms.
If anyone is inclined to donate fMRI to The Flying News, we will strain every nerve to investigate this phenomenon further.
“George Gage with Two Men,” by Anthony van Dyck. Public Domain (alterations by Lynn Locifero).