Bosses are mean. Male athletes are overly dramatic! And women behind the wheel are mysteriously prone to crashing into one another… These are just some of the revelations scientists have made, in faithful service of this week’s The Social Animal, where we investigate what’s really happening in human behavior today.
Breaking: Most people find ice cream to be delicious, bee stings to be painful, and puppies to be cuteâ€¦
File this one under S%*t We Already Knew: â€śHorrible bosses abound, according to new study.â€ť In the words of many a disgruntled employee after too much micromanaging from their bosses: Well, duh. According to a study released this week by OfficeTeam, a California-based temp agency, 46 percent of office workers say they have worked for an â€śunreasonable manager.â€ť If you ask me, that number actually sounds low, considering itâ€™s referring to employees who have had bad bosses, not those who currently do. I mean, havenâ€™t we all? Maybe the remaining 54 percent of the respondents were CEOs. Then thereâ€™s the studyâ€™s timing, which coincides just a little too conveniently with the release of the aptlyâ€”if not terribly creativelyâ€”titled Horrible Bosses. Cross-marketing, perhaps?
Something men fake more than women, for a change
Anyone whoâ€™s watched even a few minutes of professional soccerâ€”or â€śfootball,â€ť as itâ€™s known in countries that actually care about itâ€”has witnessed a player crumple to the ground in apparent agony, only to return to full speed moments later (usually after earning himself a whistle). And anyone who has witnessed such shamelessness has inevitably rolled her eyes and thought to herself, â€śGuys are such (female genitalia). A woman would not behave like that.â€ť Well, turns out theyâ€™re right. According to a new study released by the Wake Forest University School of Medicine, women soccer players are far less likely to fake injuries than their male counterparts. Dr. Daryl A. Rosenbaum, an assistant professor of family and community medicine, and also a man, found that womenâ€™s games had to be stopped about half as often as menâ€™s (5.74 apparent injuries per game versus 11.26 for the men), and about twice as many of those stoppages in womenâ€™s games were actual injuries (13.7%, compared to 7.2% for the men). Furthermore, scientists continue to agree that childbirth is more painful than Pittsburgh Steelersâ€™ playoff losses.
Good news! Feel free to keep on yapping â€” and toss in a pickled vegetable while youâ€™re at it
It only took two months for one big, expensive, official study to contradict the results of Mayâ€™s well-publicized big, expensive, official study by the World Health Organization, which labeled cell phones â€śpossibly carcinogenic,â€ť and placed them in a category called â€śIARC Group 2B,â€ť which also includes coffee and pickled vegetables. The new study, which found no link between cell phone use and brain tumors, was conducted by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection’s standing committee on epidemiology. (Incidentally, saying that five times fast may result in stroke.) Expect this health debateâ€”like those surrounding eggs, organic food, and marijuanaâ€”to continue, well, forever. Or at least as long as cell phones are around. Fortunately, as PCWorld points out, â€śFor cellphone users who are still worried, there are plenty of ways toÂ reduce radiation exposure, but those efforts may be better spent exercising and eating well, as a heart attack willÂ probably kill you first.â€ť Noted.
If you* are reading this, you* are probably a worse driver than I â€ am [Note: * = woman; â€ = man]
PAM: OKâ€¦ if I have to do thisâ€¦ Based on stereotypes that are totally untrue and that I do not agree with, you would maybe not be a very good driver.
DWIGHT: Oh, man! Am I a woman?
This exchange from The Office took place in the spring of 2005, which means that the debate over whether women are truly worse drivers than men has been raging for more than six years now. Or, you know, maybe even longer than that. Now we can finally put the debate to restâ€”or, you know, until the next study. A University of Michigan study of 6.5 million car crashes has found that female-to-female crashes occur at a â€śhigher than expectedâ€ť rate. (Male-to-male crashes outnumber female-to-female crashes by a significant margin, but apparently there are still far more men at the wheel than women. What is this, the 1950s?) The studyâ€™s researchers cite a number of possible explanations for the results, from the innocuously empirical (men are taller; men drive more, so they get more practice) to the type that sometimes result in husbands being exiled to the couch (men boast superior reflexes and spatial intelligence). Hey, donâ€™t shoot the messenger. I donâ€™t even have a carâ€¦