Rise and greet the dawn
“A fourth of adults have an inherited tendency to sneeze around bright light, a phenomenon called the photic sneeze reflex,” says Popsci.com. “Some say that light-induced sneezing is a meaningless neurological quirk, but [Robert R. Provine, author of Curious Behaviour: Yawning, Laughing, Hiccupping and Beyond] suggests that it evolved as a ‘daybreak ritual’ that provides daily nasal cleansing. The fact that the photic sneeze often can’t be repeated too soon seems to support a theory of a health-promoting cleanse triggered daily by the sun (or artificial light in modern times). The benefit, however, may be offset by the dangers inherent in the closed-eye nature of the sneeze, car crashes among them.”
Fearless leaders succeed
“It’s not a phrase normally associated with the president of the United States, but ‘fearless dominance associated with psychopathy’ could be an important predictor of how well a president performs, according to new research” says Psych Central. “‘Certain psychopathic traits may be like a double-edged sword,’ said lead author Scott Lilienfeld, a psychologist at Emory University. ‘Fearless dominance, for example, may contribute to reckless criminality and violence, or to skillful leadership in the face of a crisis.’ In fact, he noted that fearless dominance, linked to low social and physical apprehensiveness, correlates with better-rated presidential performance for leadership, persuasiveness, crisis management and Congressional relations.”
Cheating on the upswing
“Large-scale cheating has been uncovered over the last year at some of [America’s] most competitive schools,” writes Richard Perez-Pena of The New York Times. “Studies of student behaviour and attitudes show that a majority of students violate standards of academic integrity to some degree, and that high achievers are just as likely to do it as others. Moreover, there is evidence that the problem has worsened over the last few decades. Experts say the reasons are relatively simple: Cheating has become easier and more widely tolerated, and both schools and parents have failed to give students strong, repetitive messages about what is allowed and what is prohibited.”
Smelly kitchen hands?
“I’ve used coffee beans and grounds to freshen the refrigerator and it turns out this works on skin, too,” writes Emily Ho at thekitchn.com. “To get rid of stubborn smells like garlic, onions or fish, just rub a few coffee beans in your hands. When the unwanted odour is gone, wash with soap and water [unless you want to smell like a cup of joe, instead!]”
Response was amazeballs
Saying it was “blown away” by the response, Collins publishing has added more than 80 words and terms to its online dictionary after soliciting entries from the word-spotting public, reports The Daily Telegraph. Entries that made the cut include:
Blootered: an adjective commonly used in Scotland to describe someone who is drunk.
Floordrobe: “a pile of clothes left on the floor of a room.”
Amazeballs: a slang word giving approval to something. (Tanya Clarke, 30, of Nottingham, who submitted this entry said: “I first saw it on Facebook and I just thought it was really cool. My daughter is 10 and she uses it all the time.”)
Thought du jour