Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Do domestic abuse calls go up after big football games?

That was a question that came up in an interesting conversation I had with my office neighbor, Sue Goetinck. Sue is the science writer at The Dallas Morning News. She said that she remembers another science writer years ago writing a story about the increase of domestic violence calls after the Cowboys lost. Or, more generally, after any big home-team loss. That got us talking about the science behind watching sports. Sue remembers seeing a science show, maybe Nova, that addressed this very issue. The conclusion was that there is a scientific basis for why men are more interested in watching sports games than women. She thinks it has something to do with the mirror neurons in a man's brain. Maybe that explains why the WNBA has never really taken off -- because women don't really like to watch sports (generally speaking) as much as men do. This may also explain why video gamers are predominantly male. Food for thought, and I think I'm going to explore this further.

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