Thursday, January 15, 2004

Scientific Researchers: "Riding Roller Coasters Gives You Beer Goggles"

According to an actual published scientific article, roller coaster riding gives you beer goggles. Or, in scientific mumbo-jumbo, you undergo some "roller-coaster-induced excitation transfer."

The paper, written by psychologists Meston and Frohlich at the University of Texas-Austin, is titled "Love at first fright: partner salience moderates roller-coaster-induced excitation transfer," and is readily available in abstract form at Pubmed.

According to the research team, numerous amusement park patrons were approached as they were getting on or exiting a roller coaster. Quoting the abstract directly:

Participants were shown a photograph of an average attractive, opposite-gendered individual and asked to rate the individual on attractiveness and dating desirability. Participants were also asked to rate their seatmates' levels of attractiveness. Consistent with the predictions of excitation transfer theory, for males and females riding with a nonromantic partner, ratings of attractiveness and dating desirability toward the photographed individual were higher among persons exiting than entering the ride.

"This is good news for coaster enthusiasts the world over," stated American Coaster Enthusiasts Special Secretary in Charge of Insulting ACE Members and Assuring Them Their Opinions are Quite Unimportant Jeff Seifert. "We all know that it's basically impossible for these drooling herds of idiots to actually hook up and score with anyone.

"This study shows us that all any coaster enthusiast needs to do is shovel that bag of fried Oreos down the hatch, belch, fart, pull those black dress socks out of the flip-flops, and just grab a seat next to any random nubile babe or hunk of manbeef. No matter how horrifically unattractive the enthusiast is, as long as he or she drools on him or herself and assaults their seatmate with useless banter about sad, poor, lonely coasters after the coaster ride is complete, not before, they are almost certain to get themselves some trim."


[Author's Note: Who would have thought that the Pubmed website would be a veritable treasure trove of amusement value? But it is! In addition to the actual article quoted above, a brief search revealed 53 hits for "wanker," an article with authors named "Cock" and "Shanks," another article which seems to strongly imply that beavers prefer sticks that are moist, and one last one with a title a little too nasty to include in our pristine, child-friendly pages.]

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