Annoying: The Science of What Bugs Us

( 34 )

Overview

Two crackerjack science journalists from NPR look at why some things (and some people!) drive us crazy

It happens everywhere-offices, schools, even your own backyard. Plus, seemingly anything can trigger it-cell phones, sirens, bad music, constant distractions, your boss, or even your spouse. We all know certain things get under our skin. Can science explain why? Palca and Lichtman take you on a scientific quest through psychology, evolutionary biology, anthropology, and other ...

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Overview

Two crackerjack science journalists from NPR look at why some things (and some people!) drive us crazy

It happens everywhere-offices, schools, even your own backyard. Plus, seemingly anything can trigger it-cell phones, sirens, bad music, constant distractions, your boss, or even your spouse. We all know certain things get under our skin. Can science explain why? Palca and Lichtman take you on a scientific quest through psychology, evolutionary biology, anthropology, and other disciplines to uncover the truth about being annoyed. What is the recipe for annoyance? For starters, it should be temporary, unpleasant, and unpredictable, like a boring meeting or mosquito bites

  • Gives fascinating, surprising explanations for why people react the way they do to everything from chili peppers to fingernails on a blackboard
  • Explains why irrational behavior (like tearing your hair out in traffic) is connected to worthwhile behavior (like staying on task)
  • Includes tips for identifying your own irritating habits!

How often can you say you're happily reading a really Annoying book? The insights are fascinating, the exploration is fun, and the knowledge you gain, if you act like you know everything, can be really annoying.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470638699
  • Publisher: Turner Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 4/19/2011
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 378,423
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Joe Palca

Joe Palca is a science correspondent for National Public Radio and the backup host for Talk of the Nation Science Friday.

Flora Lichtman is the multimedia editor for Science Friday.

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Table of Contents

A Note from the Authors.

Introduction: Cell Phones.

1 A Noise Annoys.

2 A Case of Mistaken Intensity.

3 Fingernails on a Chalkboard.

4 Skunked.

5 Bugged by Bugs An Epic Bugging”

6 Who Moved Their Cheese?

7 The Terror of Perfect Pitch.

8 Dissonant.

9 Breaking the Rules.

10 He’s Just Not That Annoyed by You.

11 Better Late Than Never Doesn’t Apply Here.

12 When Your Mind Becomes a Foreign Country.

13 The Annoyed Brain.

14 False Alarms.

Conclusion.

Acknowledgments.

Notes.

Index.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 34 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(20)

4 Star

(4)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

(4)

1 Star

(3)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 34 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 20, 2011

    Why the low ratings?

    I really don't understand why this book has such low ratings. I thought it was well written and very interesting. If you are interested in learning more about annoyance, I say read it!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 24, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Why are you annoyed? Perhaps the person sitting next to you at t

    Why are you annoyed? Perhaps the person sitting next to you at the movies is snapping his gum, a driver on the expressway is hogging the passing lane or the lady in the supermarket line smells like a perfume factory. The list of pet peeves is endless. Science journalists Joe Palca and Flora Lichtman charmingly cover common annoyances and the degree to which science explains them. Although they draw on serious academic research throughout, the authors never take themselves too seriously. The result is a clever, revealing and thoroughly entertaining look at why certain sounds, tastes, smells and behaviors drive you up the wall. Will the book enable you to tolerate that buzzing fly or the endless wait at the post office? Maybe not, but getAbstract believes that you’re bound to look at the world around you a little differently – and probably with a dose of good-natured resignation.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 15, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Engaging, interesting a true treat for the ear, the mind and the senses.

    I found ANNOYING the Audiobook very interesting and at times very amusing. The voices of the authors Palca and Lichtman are pleasant and easy to listen to and I like how they take turns throughout the chapters of the audiobook by alternately speaking, which makes the audiobook less annoying. Other than Palca maybe being a little close to the microphone which I could tell by the sound of his slight breathing the book recording was clear, consistent and kept my interest throughout all five Cd's. This is an audio book I can listen to over and over again and not get tired of it. In Palca and Lichtman's quest to find out the true science behind what irritates people ANNOYING is a combination of scientific studies, thought provoking ideas and conclusions that will leave you stirred and pleasantly surprised. The chapter of the book about chili peppers brought on a heated conversation between my husband and I. My husband loves to eat hot peppers raw and he doesn't considered it to be annoying in the least bit. So he tried to contradict this part of the study when I had him listen to it. I could see his point, however I on the other hand think the opposite and do find chili peppers annoying and wonder why he consumes them like this. I tend to think sometimes in black and white, so I found myself thinking that maybe it is just a matter of sensitivity. I am a very sensitive person in many ways and my husband is the opposite. Noise can send me through the roof, it is a painful stimuli for my senses and it just seems to vibrate through me. Something I have tried to explain many times to others while feeling like an alien because I know they never understand. If you would like some insight into the how and why people react or behave a certain way to particular noises. Whether it be cell phone chatter from a stranger next to you or a buzzing fly invading your ear space this audiobook is for you.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 21, 2013

    Liam

    What!?

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 31, 2013

    Marc

    Oh

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2013

    Cloud

    Hmm

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 3, 2012

    Rockheart

    Yesss cause u f**** to my kit b****!!!! So leave and give me my kit

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2012

    Lrafkit

    Wigglrs and runs to camp already there

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2012

    To Barns and Nobles Agent

    First of all, it's Barnes and Noble. Second, if you really were a Barnes and Noble agent, your post wouldn't say,"by Anonymous." Third, there are three kinds of Nooks. If you're going to say you can track them, shouldn't you include all three of them and not just the Simple Touch? And lastly, your grammar is terrible for an agent of a national bookstore. Really, people posing as Barnes and Noble are terrible at it.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2012

    Angelkit

    Angelkit dogded her attack.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2012

    Darkblade to angles

    Stop fighting.NOW. just calm down and move on.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 30, 2012

    Why am i wasting my time here?!

    Why am i wasting my time here!? Jeez

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 29, 2012

    N

    "Oh, okay...I'm sorry." She looks down, clearly ashamed of letting off her anger on someone else....
    ~Fawnstep

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 2, 2012

    Destructo to pebbletheslash

    Ive seen you somewhere befeore... were you part of dynasty?

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 1, 2012

    Deathfang

    Im Deathfangs brother in real life. He got a concussion playing soccer last night and can only be on at night. Thats when i can help him type. Dont count him as missing.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 28, 2012

    Silvermoon

    Where are we going?

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2012

    S.s

    I will b watching you forever...

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2012

    Pebbletheslash

    He ran his claws over leafkit. Im un defeatable too. Are you sure you want to take me on? And to the new apprentice: this is mot ypur place. Leave now.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 28, 2012

    Fallowfern

    Leaps away nimbly.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2012

    Scar

    "Did i pass." Asks scar

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 34 Customer Reviews

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