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The Cocktail Napkin


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Great Dessert? Depends on the Plate

Desserts are sweeter on white plates, comedians are kinder off stage, and small feet are more attractive … in our latest Cocktail Napkin.

Women Eye Dance Moves to Find Thrill Seekers

How to spot thrill-seeking men on the dance floor, “sweet” personalities in public, and bidding fever on eBay.


Does This Make My Antenna Look Big?

Researchers mix technology with fashion, analyze a pharaoh’s skin condition, measure the smarts of Scrabble players, and more in this edition of Miller-McCune’s “Cocktail Napkin.”

As if Commercials Weren’t Bad Enough Already

Do we really need to smell the items featured in TV programming? A materials expert has created a function for your TV or portable device that can generate thousands of odors.

The Exploitation of Muggles in Harry Potter’s World

In this edition of The Cocktail Napkin, we look academics’ fixation on the social and economic problems in the world of Harry Potter, and how music festivals impact the psychological and social well-being.

New Dinosaur Gets a Rather Large Name

As if being wiped out by a meteor wasn’t degrading enough, a charismatic dinosaur discovered in Utah gets a less-than-flattering name.

Time for Robin Hood to Make a Comeback

Researchers from Nottingham University Business School say their survey proves it’s time for the city to re-embrace its most famous, albeit probably mythical, hero.

Standing in Alcohol Won’t Get You Drunk

Newsflash: Submerging your feet in alcohol doesn’t get you intoxicated. It only helps you dodge the “Less Filling/Tastes Great” debate. Sorry, Denmark.

College Guys Will Remember the Pretty Ones

In a recent experiment, women who showed interest in college-aged men were more likely to be remembered if they were deemed attractive.

Next They’ll Tell Us Germs Can Dance

Researchers discover very specific patterns in the movement of bacteria, which has important implications for the treatment of infections.

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Quick Studies

Banning Chocolate Milk Was a Bad Choice

The costs of banning America's favorite kids drink from schools may outweigh the benefits, a new study suggests.

In Battle Against Climate Change, Cities Are Left All Alone

Cities must play a critical role in shifting the world to a fossil fuel-free future. So why won't anybody help them?

When a Romance Is Threatened, People Rebound With God

And when they feel God might reject them, they buddy up to their partner.

How Can We Protect Open Ocean That Does Not Yet Exist?

As global warming melts ice and ushers in a wave of commercial activity in the Arctic, scientists are thinking about how to protect environments of the future.

What Kind of Beat Makes You Want to Groove?

The science behind the rhythms that get you on the dance floor.

The Big One

One state—Pennsylvania—logs 52 percent of all sales, shipments, and receipts for the chocolate manufacturing industry. March/April 2014