Monday, November 12, 2007

A Disturbing Ramification of the WGA strike

This morning I started reading the evolutionary psychology book

I'm not to far into it, but I already came across something amusing... and disturbing (paragraph breaks are mine for easier reading):

"A recent study shows that individuals who watch certain types of TV programs
are more satisfied with their friendships, as if they had more friends or
socialized with them more frequently. According to the Savanna Principle, this
is probably because the human brain, adapted to the ancestral environment, has
difficulty distinguishing between our real friends in the flesh and the
characters we repeatedly see on TV.

In the ancestral environment, any
realistic images of other humans were other humans, and if you saw them
repeatedly and they did not try to kill or harm you in any way, then more than
likely they were your friends.

Our Stone Age brain therefore assumes
that the characters we repeatedly encounter on TV, very few of whom try to kill
or harm us, are our real friends, and our satisfaction with friendships thereby
increases by seeing them more frequently."

So if the WGA continues to strike and the the public doesn't get to see their "friends" anymore, will we see a massive wave of depression? Will an increase in divorce result as people blame their spouses for the diminished quality of their friendships?

Or will reruns reintroduce people to "long-lost friends" and keep their spirits up.

I'm going to have to protect myself-- time to stock up on Babylon 5 and Joan of Arcadia so we don't get lonely....

Also -- does anyone else find it mildly disturbing that the author believes that "very few" TV characters are trying to kill or harm us?????? I guess it's a good thing that Dr. Octopus can't get out of the magic glass box, huh?

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