May 11, 2005
An insightful psychological test
Some researchers at the University of Missouri recently investigated how alcohol would influence the sexual stimulation of a bunch of undergraduate boys. Because these are very clever researchers, they pretty much assumed that many college guys would tend to rate the attractiveness of college girls higher if they had a few drinks first. But what they decided to test in this study is if brief exposure to masked words that are related to alcohol would have a similar effect. Basically, could they get some guys to respond to women the way they do when they're drunk just by showing them words like "beer"? Even if what they were shown was actually "xdbeerilq"?
They sure could! [abstract of the article here] The researchers found that if men had previously indicated that they get a little extra romantic feeling when they've been drinking, they rate women as being more attractive than do men who claim no such lusty effects when they drink, after both sets of men are flashed with words like "rwqdrunkmi".
What does this mean? The researchers conclude only that "the effects of alcohol expectancies on behavior are remarkably subtle and far-reaching." Just thinking about alcohol, even subconsciously, seems to produce the aphrodisiac effects we expect to experience when we drink. What I wonder is if guys who self-report that they become more interested in women after they drink are just generally more girl-crazy than guys who don't, um... OK, I'm trying to avoid the term "beer-goggles" here, but it looks like I can't get around it.
So now I'd like to conduct a little test.
1) Please answer the following questions:
Do you tend to get that rogueish spark in your eye after you've had a few drinks?
Have you ever made out with someone in the bathroom of a bar that you would probably not even notice on the subway?
2) Now look at this:
3) Now look at this picture and rate the attractiveness of the women you see.
Yow! Pretty foxy right? No? Well, try doing a few shots of Wild Turkey, then repeat the test.
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