Posted by: Anne E. Stuart | November 20, 2015

Friday Five – November 20, 2015

This week has flown by. It’s hard to believe we’re down to seven days of classes left. My research students are nearing the end of their individual projects and a few have entered panic mode. A colleague and I got to resuscitate a student’s data file, yesterday. It was fun to pull up old grad school skills of importing data files into SPSS.

FYI: I will be posting on 11/27/15. With only a two-day work week leading into that, it could be an interesting post to build. There will also be a 12/4/15 post. I’ll likely take a break over winter break. I’m still not sure what my plans for the blog are next semester.

Here are this week’s links:

Slate: Medical Examiner (Karen D. Brown) – November 20, 2015

The connection between this link and psychology might not be immediately obvious. However, I choose it for two reasons. The first, the cases being reported on are here in my school’s hometown of Springfield. Second, there are a lot of connections to psychology when you read the story and think about the circumstances surrounding the problem.

PsychCentral (Michele L. Brennan) – November 20, 2015

The terror attacks last Friday night in Paris were startling to many around the globe. Terrorism works because it creates fear and anxiety. We can’t get rid of all of that, but there are some things we can do to keep our fears and anxiety in check and at a more realistic level.

PsychCentral (Rolandus Malinauskas) – November 15, 2015

As I found over my half marathon training and my continued running, I get really grumpy if I don’t get a run in every few days. The running just helps balance my stress and keep my emotions in check. No surprise once you read this link.

Improbable Research (Martin Gardiner) – November 16, 2015

My students are always amused when I start talking about comfort and personal space – I might not get to that this semester in Human Sexuality. I often joked that I’ve got a really good gauge of what is my personal space bubble – my arms. Seems that researchers in Italy have empirically tested this. As an introvert, I’m not at all bothered by the fact that my personal space bubble has a diameter of 70 inches.

Time (Alexandra Sifferlin) – November 17, 2015

Last week I shared that the number of babies dying of congenital syphilis has increased in the U.S. It should come as no surprise that an underlying cause of that crisis (beyond issues in access to quality prenatal care) is the underlying increase in STD rates, in general. If you’re sexually active, you should get yourself tested and encourage your partners to also get tested. If you’ve been tested before, but have had new partners since the last time you were tested, you should get tested again. Many STDs have no symptoms, so you can’t tell who’s infected just by looking.

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  1. I read the article about anxiety and the world of terrorism. I found that there was a lot of good points that were made. We do live in a world now that terrorism isn’t just something that is happening in a far off land. It is happening right on our soil and to make it worse, the terrorist live among us. I think a lot of anxiety is felt because not only do we not know when or where it can happen but who will be causing it. I know that I’m hypervigilent of my surroundings and the people around me. I get very anxious is crowds of people that I don’t know and sometimes as wrong as it is, find myself profiling. Some of the tools the writer talked about could be helpful to a person who is obsessive about the world around us. Some people are glued to their TV’s and internet waiting for the newest developments. I know during the Boston bombing I was intensely watching especially when the bombers were at large. My brother lives a few blocks from the area that was bombed and I was concerned for his safety. Another point she made about living in the present was helpful. You can’t change what happened yesterday and there’s no assurance of tomorrow. Overall I thought the article was very informative.

  2. The second article I read was the one about STD’s is on the rise. This blows my mind. I don’t understand how with all the information we are given these days and how easy it is to 1) get condoms and 2) get tested, that we are having rates this high? The embarrassment of going to the store and buying condoms is even a thing of the past. You can buy them online and have them sent to your door in a discreet package. You don’t even have to leave your house to stay safe. I understand being young and in the moment but seriously is your life worth that extra minute it takes to protect yourself?? The article suggests getting tested at least once a year. I think that if your are sexually active with multiple partners it should be more like every few months. Some diseases, like HIV take longer to show up in your system. I know it’s a pain to go to the doctors but if you’re going to make the choice to have a unsafe lifestyle, that’s the price you have to pay. Even if you are the one that’s always safe, mistakes happen. Take that extra step to know that your good and everyone you have sex with won’t be getting things from you. Don’t be a Charlie Sheen.

  3. Arrrrr!


    Arrrgh! How can anyone in this day and age not get enough vitamin C. You consume that by *accident*.

  4. STD rates hit record high in the US:
    There are several issues that I have with this article. Yes, STD’s are certainly a concerning subject matter that everyone needs to be aware of, however what is the cause for the rise? Is it a lack of protection? is there truly a rise in these diseases or are there just more reported? While its suggested that people having sex be tested, tested, tested… I can appreciate the logic, however are these statistics rising in areas where there is a lack of education? Lower income areas? There needs to be more awareness of the risks and what to do. There are women in this country that don’t take advantage of prenatal care, do you really think that they are going to pay for testing to be done on an infection that they may or may not have – particularly if they are asymptomatic?

    Anxiety in a world of terrorism:
    I am not a person that is prone to be anxious, however there are circumstances that make me never want to step out of the safety of my own home. Knowing people that do have issues with anxiety, I can only imagine how much more unsettling the world must seem to someone that is already struggling. These days the technology available has brought news stories into the hands of people who aren’t even looking for it. Social media, blogs, updates popping up on smart phones, 24 hour news stations – all of this may seem like its impossible to forget the negative in the world even for just a few minutes. Some days I feel like its impossible not to have anxiety over things going on in this world 😦

  5. There blog had two good points that is if interest to me. One have to do with the Axiety in a world of terrorism.
    For one thing I believe that we all need some caution when it come to place we find ourselves these days. The reason mention the article is because we don’t know were the enemies are. The world we live in is very scary. However, I believe that the media is making it even worse. The constent report on terrorism in every part of the world. They can’t focus on anything positive but the same news every time the news is on. And be cause of this, I trying to follow the same advice that I found in this article. That is to stop watching cnn and other news media that discuss nothing but terrorism.
    And the second article was the one on depression and exercise.
    When a person is suffering from depression exercise help to calm the mind and heart. I realize that whe n I am feeling down and just walking along help change my mood. I feel so refreshed and different after the walk. Even a 15 minute run down the street and back calm a person down mentally. So as a person who don’t exercise, I feel so feel the different when I am in a depressed state. So yes exercise do help.

  6. STD rates Hit Record High in the U.S wasn’t really surprising to me. It seems as though they are very easy to avoid, I feel as though todays society doesn’t really care about their bodies, or other peoples bodies. But 1.4 million people with STDs seems very insane to me and feel like that shouldn’t be happening. Especially in young adult women, because if it stays, or they are permanent and decide to get pregnant they can affect the baby. In this article to statistics are really jaw dropping and doesn’t seem realistic. It’s also really surprising that the numbers haven’t changed since 2006. These number could also not be accurate they said, because many people don’t report if they have an STD, or may not know. The doctors caution young sexually active adults to get tested at least once a year, and if you’re pregnant, in the early stages you should ask for a test to be done.

    Personal Space Gauges. This article was interesting seeing how I really do enjoy my personal space, and it seems as though no one respects it. Many people say they like an arms length away from people no matter what sex they were, but a lot of people don’t abide by that rule. I was also surprised that people didn’t say they would like further length. Yet I was also surprised that they agreed that same sex or not, they wanted them an arms length away, I figured they would say more length for same sex and less length for different sex. I really liked this article and would like to learn more on this topic and figure out why some people are more irritable by how close people are than others.

  7. I also cannot believe how quickly the academic semester is coming to a close! And thoroughly enjoying this blog, so glad I bumped into it. The article on scurvy was, besides being well written, a startler. And right here in Springfield, Mass! Thanks for sharing, Anne.


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