Science: Just another way to make me change my behavior

Sometimes, I've got to hand it to the female gender. If a full-scale war ever erupted between the genders, you all would kick our butts.

Why? Because women are so cunning that they have mastered the ability to manipulate science for their own benefit. I don't know how you are doing it, but I'm pretty sure you are.

Women understand that men are stubborn and, for the most part, unwilling to do unmanly things unless we actually believe it may be of some benefit to us directly.

Talk about our feelings? Could lead to sex.

Go to the doctor? That's where they keep the Viagra.

Shave? Allows us to play with knives. HI-YA!

Cry? Lets other men know we have just accidentally castrated ourselves and can no longer have sex.

Take a Shower? Sex.

Go to work? Gets us money, to buy cars and diamonds ... which could lead to, well you know.

That's pretty much it, if it makes us happy or keeps us from dying, we'll consider it.

Women, being the smarter gender, realized this and discovered that to facilitate a change in behavior the proposal had to have two things: A benefit to us and some "scientific" proof that it worked.

For example: Want us to eat less meat? Float a "study" that too much red meat causes impotence, and watch the tofu fly off the shelves.

I once read a study theorizing that people who watch on average more than four hours of televised sports have higher blood pressure than those who don't. Higher blood pressure means " wait for it " a decline in sexual performance.

Good-bye "Monday Night Football," hello "Dancing with the Stars."

But ladies, you have finally gone too far. I was willing to accept all your bunny-huggin' research about how smoking was "bad for me" and how exercise could "benefit my heart" and how not sucking on pennies was more "sanitary," but this is too much.

According to a new study in the latest issue of "Human Communication Research," writing affectionate feelings about your loved one might lower cholesterol.

What a crock.

Participants in the study spent three 20-minute sessions writing affectionate feelings about their loved ones over a five-week period and exhibited significantly lower cholesterol levels than their peers who didn't (and apparently hate their significant others).

Now, I'm a modern open-minded man, or as I like to say, a "Memale," but this seems like a transparent attempt to get men to write love notes.

But I figured I had better test this out before completely condemning it. So, since I can't measure my cholesterol, I very unscientifically used my heart rate instead. I took my pulse and sat down to write affectionate things about my girlfriend for 20 minutes.

First of all, that's freakin hard to do, and I do it for a living. I can't imagine someone who doesn't write every day succeeding at this, man or woman.

Here's what I imagine writing affectionate things will result in.

Female version: "I love Earl so much, it's the little things he does for me like draw my bathwater and make my tea. I love that even though I'm a strong, independent woman he will still beat people up if I ask him to" and so on.

Male version: "1) Nice butt 2) Killer boobs 3) Eats deer 4) Doesn't eat the last of the Doritos 5) Puts up with my gas."

I did slightly better than that, but not by much. What started as innocent, sweet Jane Austin-esque prose quickly degraded into a tawdry Jenna Jamison-esque story. You know, the type of book with a bare-chested Fabio in a windstorm on the cover.

Needless to say, my heart rate did not go down.

So, based on my extensive research, I am forced to conclude that this study is totally bogus. Yep totally made up, just like PMS.

A word of advice, next time just release a "study" that says writing about your significant other increases girth.

That ought to generate some epic novels.

Got a comment? Tell me about it on the Party of One blog at

- Jarid Shipley is a reporter for the Nevada Appeal. Contact him a or 881-1217.


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