Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Curl Girls, Working Guys

US Girls Curling Team

Pinerola, Italy – The US women’s curling team, frustrated by fast ice, lost to Norway 11-6. But look how cute they are. Rush said he likes to watch a woman using a broom. Wonder what he means.

The US men’s team, however, bunched their stones and beat the Norwegians by two. In the second men’s game, the US team and the Finns were tied 3-3 after nine ends. The US had the last rock, the hammer that is expected to score at least one point by getting closest to the button. US captain Pete Fenson took the hammer throw but left a Finnish stone closest to the target.

The Finns Marku Uusipaavalniemi then blocked the top of the house and Fenson’s final stone curled a few inches left and failed to knock a US stone into the middle. The Finns won 4-3.

So the US is involved in the wild world of ... curling.

Meanwhile, an opinion poll conducted for Valentine’s Day asked 1022 adults what they wanted in a spouse. I took some solace in the results.

What Women want in a mate:

1. steady job
2. paying bills on time
3. sense of humor
4. get along with my family
5. want children
6. clean driving record

What Men want in a mate:

1. sense of humor
2. get along with my family
3. steady job/
3. good credit history
5. want children
6. good kisser

Very practical are these young singles. “Good looks” doesn’t make the top six, even for men, though they do like kissing. A sense of humor is very important, as is being a reliable provider and getting along with the family. Men and women still want children, unlike the Europeans.

One working woman commented about the top wants for women: “And they say money can’t buy you love. It’s sort of a sad commentary.” Or perhaps women just want a good provider to support the babies.

Finally, here's a look at the British team. They curl better than our girls do.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Greetings Brain Explorers!

Valentines' Day brings up some interesting things about love and the chemicals in the brain that create these positive emotions-- The February National Geographic presents an excellent current article on the "geography" of love in the brain, so check it out.

Here's a brief summary...

Anthropologist Helen Fisher has used a brain scanning Magnetic
Resonance Imaging machine (MRI) to look at what happens inside the
skulls of couples who have been wildly in love for about 7 months-
inside the limbic system (where our favorite brain part the amygdala resides).

The people were shown a neutral image of a stranger, and then the
image of their "loved one". When the endearing image is seen, the
limbic system reward centers light up and is flooded with dopamine.
("Why do you think they call it 'dope'?") You get high- you laugh, you find normally not so funny things hysterical, you are madly forgiving.

You are "In Love".

But this exact feeling never lasts. You eventually build a resistance to these unusually high dopamine levels, just like many other favorite drugs of recreation.

The evolutionary benefit is that these temporary higher levels
encourage mating, so the human bean species lives on another
generation. You are blinded by Cupid's arrows- at least for a while.

Now the interesting part occurs-- LONG TERM SURVIVAL requires that
another chemical bond occur between mates- that of oxytocin. This is the chemical that is created/released when you hug your dog, or long-term spouses and kids. If you can get past the depletion of dopamine stage, and into the oxytocin positive-addiction stage-- you
get into another "high", one that can be maintained indefinitely.

But oxytocin rewards require looking past superficial "quick-fix", short-term rewards of dopamine and phenyl ethylamine- another quick fix "love potion" reward release in the brains of people "in love"-- curiously also found in chocolate. (Now you know why chocolate is a favorite valentines gift, you sly devil you...)

If mates can begin producing oxytocin with advanced frontal lobes cooperative BEHAVIORS (like hugging and kissing, and helping), they stay mated over a long term, and successfully raise their little ones into adulthood- and into the gene pool.

If mates cannot produce oxytocin behaviors-- they split up, get
divorced, or fail to raise their kids, are raise their kids in a
similarly deprived environment, and their offspring car surf out of
boredom and die young and leave the gene pool..... or something like that, you get the picture.

An interesting side note, Denver Rocky Mountain News writer Betsy Hart observes than "men typically fall in love in about three dates, but for women it takes 20."

I told you women generally have a better record of brain self-control
than men :-)


On another romantic note- Kissing and the brain:

If you look at the neuroreceptors in the brains motor neural strip for the lips, its disproportionately huge compared with the neural real estate for other parts of the body.

Our lips are a kind of tactile antenna.

Kissing gives releases hormones that increase sexual arousal (well,
duh), boosts a woman's relatively low androgen level (does the same),
and releases more endorphins than a minimal dose of morphine.


5:45 PM  
Blogger pappy said...

Hey I got my wife a curling iron can she get in the games?

1:03 AM  

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