Blame Your DNA
Other than a bowl of buttered popcorn and a multi-episode House of Cards binge, what are the keys to a successful marriage? Researchers at U.C. Berkeley tracked more than 150 couples in an effort to answer that question. Interestingly, they learned that DNA can play a major role in determining whether a person feels marital bliss. They also focused on how couples handle heated arguments: “If the wife could calm down shortly after the conflict, the marriage had a better chance of succeeding. Whether the husband was able to regulate his emotions had little to no role in long-term marital satisfaction.” (It’s gonna be a long Valentine's Day for the dude who published that finding…)
It Doesn’t Add Up
ADHD diagnoses are up and so is the use of stimulants like Adderall. But do these drugs really help kids when it comes to academics? According to Nature’s Katherine Sharpe, evidence is mounting that medication for ADHD doesn’t make a lasting difference to schoolwork or achievement.
+ BBC: Lack of sleep blights pupils’ education.
Donald Trump is at it again. Every election season, he flirts with the idea of running for office (this time, he’s talking about the NY gubernatorial race). And each time, after getting his required fix of attention, he ends up not running. He’ll never actually run for office. He’s a lunatic, but he’s not crazy. Buzzfeed’s McKay Coppins spent a weird 36 hours on the fake campaign trail with Donald Trump.
+ “As a result of my efforts to help injured bicyclists by calling 911, I was, in short order: separated from my friend, violently tackled, arrested, taken to county jail, stripped and left in a solitary cell. I am writing this story because, if it could happen to me, it could happen to you.”
+ A Virginia judge struck down that state’s ban on same-sex marriage. “Eighteen court decisions have addressed an issue of equality based on sexual orientation, and equality has won every single time.”
(Really) Offensive Lineman
According to a report released by an NFL investigator, Miami Dolphins’ offensive lineman Richie Incognito (and others) subjected fellow lineman Jonathan Martin (and others) to “a pattern of harassment.”
+ What does it take to have your hazing tactics stand out in the NFL? SB Nation has some outtakes from the worst of the Richie Incognito/Jonathan Martin report.
+ Incognito comes across as particularly dumb. But he plays in a league that isn’t exactly known for rewarding intellect. From Aaron Gordon, here’s the story of Myron Rolle. The NFL wanted him … until he was named a Rhodes Scholar.
Five Ring Circus
After a week of unexpectedly weak performances, U.S. speedskaters have asked Olympic officials if they can change out of their Under Armour suits. The Mach 39 suits were supposed to give the skaters an edge. Instead, as Slate’s Justin Peters explains, “the Mach 39 has become the New Coke of skintight, high-performance skating outfits — an object of mockery and derision, a colossal flop on the biggest possible stage.”
+ Think your Valentine’s Day is complicated? At least you and your loved one don’t Curl for different countries.
+ If you can’t win gold, go for bronze. You’ll be happier than the person who wins silver.
Seeing snow out your window? You’re not the only one. There is currently snow on the ground in 49 out of 50 states. Florida is only state without a trace of fresh, white powder (and that’s the first time anyone has said that about Florida).
+ Skiing and snowboarding in New York City.
The S.I. of the Beholder
This is the time of year when Sports Illustrated publishes its annual swimsuit issue. So its the perfect time to complain that they almost never put any female athletes on the cover of the magazine.
Life is Like a Box of Ambassadors
“I’m no real expert on China.” So said the new U.S. ambassador in Beijing. And that was nothing compared to the series of gaffes and laughs provided by those nominated for ambassador posts around the world. Are we putting our best face forward?
Ryan Kearney in The New Republic: “I’m not here to bemoan the crass commodification of romantic love, the decline of the rom-com, or the prevalence of heteronormativity and Photoshopped beauty in advertising. My gripe is with love itself.”
+ Think your Valentine’s Day love notes can be as poetic as those written by Richard Nixon?
+ Buying chocolates today? Better get them quick. We’re running out of cocoa.
+ Digital tools might make it easier to hook up. But they also make it harder to break up.
The Bottom of the News
“Greet him in sweatpants when he arrives home. Then don’t take them off. Ever.” Valentine’s Day is just the occasion to re-read McSweeney’s guide to Kama Sutra for couples who have been dating over three years.
+ “You always try to fix it when what I need you to do is listen.” It’s Not About the Nail.
+ Breaking: Internet Trolls Really Are Horrible People.