This is just a video of a pair of tires, co-mounted on a tractor-trailer-style wheel, bouncing down a highway with the gleeful abandon of a cardboard box full of puppies. Why is it so much fun to watch? Why does the driver of the car filming the tires’ jaunt giggling to himself, in simple glee? Why is it so easy to ignore the danger posed by the uncontrolled, fast-moving objects on the freeway and just be amused by the tires’ antics? I don’t really have any answers to these questions, so, sorry about that.
Here, watch for yourself:
Look at those tires cavort! Also, you have to be impressed by the design of the concrete highway barrier that consistently re-directs the tires back into their lane, over and over.
Why are our brains so willing to make us perceive these inanimate things as having fun?
Some researchers suggest we tend to attribute “humanness” to unpredictable behavior, which I think is what is going on here.
Were these tires inert, just leaning against a wall or something, or even mounted on a truck, spinning, I do not think we would have this sort of perception.
Wheels and tires don’t normally lend themselves well to the sort of hardwired face-seeing we do for many other objects, such as cars, so I think here what’s happening is all based on the motion of the wheels.
So, really, are we anthropomorphizing physics? Is that what’s going on here? Is it a combination of angular momentum and gravity that are combining to make me perceive two tires sharing a wheel as a pair of best buds who just broke out of their oppressive life under a trailer and are now finally seeing the world on their own terms, so full of delight and joy that they’re bouncing all over the road like lunatics?