Dutch brain scientists have discovered that when a woman sees cute shoes affixed to Sarah Jessica Parker's feet, her medial orbitofrontal cortex goes bonkers. Why anyone would study the effect of celebrity shoes on female brains?
OK, fine, we all know exactly why this study happened: to help people sell stuff. Apparently our brains encode richer memories when we see products being used by someone we "know," which increases the likelihood that we remember to buy them. Until today, I was always in the "more knowledge is always better" school of thought, but I'm having a really hard time fitting a team of Dutch scientists scanning 24 women's brains while sliding pictures of famous people's shoes before their eyes into this worldview. Did it really have to be shoes and women? Couldn't they have chose a slightly less groan-worthy pairing to spare us the inevitable "Shoes Make Women's Brains Explode" headline? It makes me want to lobotomize my medial orbitofrontal cortex out of shame for being a female and having a brain at all. But maybe I'm not thinking straight, because there's a picture of Sarah Jessica Parker in front of me, and I can see her shoes in it, and it's sending my medial orbitofrontal cortex into aneurysms of materialistic joy. [BBC]