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A beautifully told story with colorful characters out of epic tradition, a tight and complex plot, and solid pacing. -- Booklist, starred review of On the Razor's Edge

Great writing, vivid scenarios, and thoughtful commentary ... the stories will linger after the last page is turned. -- Publisher's Weekly, on Captive Dreams

Friday, August 10, 2012

Stressed Men Prefer Chubby Chicks


Stressed Men Prefer Chubby Chicks


The estimable Dr. Briggs reveals yet another giant leap for mankind in the course of Science Marching Onward.  Old fogies like TOF can remember when Science used to March On to moon landings or cures for smallpox; but then we live in rather more timid times.  That does not prevent intrepid researchers from reaching universal conclusions from limited samples. especially since they achieved Statistical Significance and used super-scientificalistic fMRI brain scans.  If they had a digital read-out that would be the cream in their ever-loving coffee. 

Unmentioned is the niggling problem of sampling theory: in what was were the 81 WEIRD students representative of any population larger than themselves?  The conclusions of a sample can only be extended to the population from which the sample was randomly drawn.  Dr. Briggs tells us:

Here’s a title for you, “BMI Not WHR Modulates BOLD fMRI Responses in a Sub-Cortical Reward Network When Participants Judge the Attractiveness of Human Female Bodies.” How about that? I had my money on WHR.

What? Waist-to-hip ratio, of course. The preferred marker of attractiveness for many men. I myself like to reward my sub-cortical network with larger WHR and not higher BMI. But that’s just me, and I’ve been under a lot of stress.
The remaining drollery can be found here.

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