human behavior

During an experiment, marketing professor Remi Trudel noticed a pattern in what his volunteers were recycling versus throwing in the garbage. He then went through his colleagues' trash and recycling bins at Boston University for more data.

He found the same pattern, says NPR's Shankar Vedantam: "Whole sheets of paper typically went in the recycling, but paper fragments went in the trash."

Same type of paper, different shapes, different bins.

Scientists claim they have evidence that explains why lifestyle changes known to be good for you — low-fat diets, exercise, reducing stress — can lengthen your life.

Based on a small, exploratory study, researchers say these good habits work by preventing chromosomes in our cells from unraveling. Basically, they assert that healthy living can reverse the effects of aging at a genetic level.

Chion Wolf

If men are from Mars and women are from Venus, asexuals seem like brothers and sisters from a distant solar system. 

Western societies are gradually growing accustomed -- with varying degrees of comfort -- to the initials in LGBT, but what about A? On our show today we explored the idea that some people have no sexual orientation -- not because of a hormonal deficiency or a position on the autism spectrum or some buried childhood sexual trauma -- but because they don't have a discernable sex drive.

On The Colin McEnroe Show we have a (possibly misguided) notion that we can find at least a little bit of humor in subjects that most public radio shows would treat with utter seriousness. Not everyone agrees, and a certain percent of my negative email is from people who cannot believe that we have injected levity into something deserving only sober contemplation. 

Tony Alter / Creative Commons

People with eating disorders like obesity could be getting treatment from a therapist with their own inherent weight bias, that's according to a new study from the Yale Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.

The survey of 329 mental health specialists revealed that while almost all of them agreed it's important to treat obese patients with compassion and respect, they admitted that many of their colleagues have negative biases about their obese patients. 56 percent said they heard or witnessed other professionals making negative comments and fat jokes about obese patients in their care.

peapodsquadmom/flickr creative commons

Today: The way the thoughts we have and the decisions we make are influenced by forces that aren't always in our control.

elizabeth tersigni/flickr creative commons

Why do the smartest students often do poorly on standardized tests? Why did you tank that interview or miss that golf swing when you should have had it in the bag? Why do you mess up when it matters the most—and how can you perform your best instead?

Chion Wolf

We're talking today about a word that can refer to the solid waste produced by male cattle. It can also refer to nonsensical talk not grounded in fact. In 1986, the American philosopher Harry Frankfurt published a scholarly analysis of this concept. In some ways it was a groundbreaking paper, but it also constituted a furtherance of an almost constant inquiry by thinking people.

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center/flickr creative commons

The world’s most popular astrophysicist, Neil deGrasse Tyson, joins us. Plus a look at Secret Sex Lives, Suzy Spencer’s year on the fringes of American sexuality.

Wikimedia Commons

I'm forever grateful -- and oddly disappointed -- that in the 24 hours during which we've been promoting today's show about the role of jerks in shaping the history and character of Connecticut, not one person has asked me whether I'm going to be a guest. I feel as though my reputation as a Connecticut jerk is kind of bleaching out in the hot sun of passing time.

Wikimedia Commons

Tom Coppen/flickr creative commons

For over 100 years, ADHD has been seen as essentially a behavior disorder. Recent scientific research has developed a new paradigm which recognizes ADHD as a developmental disorder of the cognitive management system of the brain, its executive functions. Dr. Thomas Brown's A New Understanding of ADHD in Children and Adults pulls together key ideas of this new understanding of ADHD, explaining them and describing in understandable language scientific research that supports this new model.

Marko Rosic/flickr creative commons

Becoming a Life Change Artist: 7 Creative Skills to Reinvet Yourself at Any Stage of Life

The Artist's Way meets What Color is Your Parachute? in an innovative approach to reinventing yourself at any stage of life.

Superstitions

Jul 2, 2013
Ryan M./flickr creative commons

Mirrors, ladders, black cats, salt, cracks in the sidewalk, pennies, rabbits' feet, umbrellas, crossed fingers, crossed hearts, crossing yourself…

Today: Superstitions. We'll look at how and why irrational beliefs keep us happy, healthy, and sane.

Superstitions

Jul 2, 2013
Ryan M./flickr creative commons

Mirrors, ladders, black cats, salt, cracks in the sidewalk, pennies, rabbits' feet, umbrellas, crossed fingers, crossed hearts, crossing yourself…

Today: Superstitions. We'll look at how and why irrational beliefs keep us happy, healthy, and sane.

Flickr Creative Commons, Public Domain Photos

Indi Samarajiva/flickr creative commons

From its earliest days, America served as an arena for the revolutions in alternative spirituality that eventually swept the globe. Esoteric philosophies and personas—from Freemasonry to Spiritualism, from Madame H. P. Blavatsky to Edgar Cayce—dramatically altered the nation’s culture, politics, and religion. Yet the mystical roots of our identity are often ignored or overlooked. Mitch Horowitz joins us to talk Occult America, his study of the esoteric undercurrents of our history and their profound impact across modern life.

Stewart Black/flickr creative commons

You've seen them. Hanging on telephone poles and posted on supermarket bulletin boards.

But have you ever wondered about the stories behind them?

When her orange tabby, Zak, disappeared, Nancy Davidson did what countless people before her had done. She made a lost cat poster. And after days of frantic searching, she found him. Nancy was ecstatic. Zak seemed happy, too—although being a cat, it was hard to tell.

KnitXcorE's on Flickr Creative Commons

KnitXcorE's on Flickr Creative Commons

Courtney Dirks, Flickr Creative Commons

Courtney Dirks, Flickr Creative Commons

First off, let me apologize to all the people I have spoken to in the last couple of years who have asked me how I am. My response has invariably been, "Busy." Which, I've decided, is a crap answer. In my defense, I really meant it. I sincerely believed that the word that summed up how I am was "Busy."

But what does that even mean? I used to think it meant I have so many different jobs and work responsibilities that I'm unable to do a whole bunch of other things, although I'm not even sure what those things are.

Love 2.0

May 30, 2013
Camdiluv ♥/flickr creative commons

Flickr Creative Commons, Free Grunge Textures

Today, in order to watch a Lenny Bruce monologue on YouTube, I had to sit through a Starbucks commercial. This feels like proof that some kind of fundamental battle has been lost, right? The Internet is free, but not really.

Flickr Creative Commons

Chion Wolf photo

“There are a few circumstances in life in which most people respond the same way, such as starvation. The emotional and psychological stance, as we'll as mental calculations, one takes to prevent starvation would all basically be the same.

“If your child dies, it's an assault on your life, and because of that there is a universal response — [and there are] some basic common elements to that response.” — Bruce Clements

Today, Bruce joins us for a live call-in show on coping with the death of a child.

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