Tuesday, October 4, 2016

News You Can Use: "In a Heated Negotiation? Try Eating Like Your Opponent"

I initially misread the headline as "Try eating your opponent" an error I ascribe to the current political climate and the memory of Alferd Packer, Colorado's most famous cannibal, about whom the sentencing judge said:
"Stand up yah voracious man-eatin' sonofabitch and receive yir sintince. When yah came to Hinsdale County, there was siven Dimmycrats. But you, yah et five of 'em, goddam yah. I sintince yah t' be hanged by th' neck ontil yer dead, dead, dead, as a warnin' ag'in reducin' th' Dimmycratic populayshun of this county. Packer, you Republican cannibal, I would sintince ya ta hell but the statutes forbid it."
This is not the first time Alferd has graced our pages. He was an endnote to 2015's "Trapped In the Snow With That Brother-In-Law Who Won't Stop Talking? Consider the Cannibal Lifestyle" where we pointed out the University of Colorado-Boulder student center was home to the Alferd Packer Restaurant & Grill.

Prior to that he showed up in a 2007 post on global warming:
UFO science key to halting climate change: former Canadian defense minister

Anyhoo, here's the headline story, our second of the day from ChicagoBoothReview:
When two strangers eat the same thing, their similar food choice can be a bond that increases trust and cooperation, research suggests. Advertisers and negotiators may be able to use this tendency strategically.

Food has long brought people together and been a popular topic for sociologists, who have argued, among other things, that people prefer to share a meal rather than eat alone.

Chicago Booth’s Ayelet Fishbach and Kaitlin Woolley, a Booth PhD candidate, combine this exploration of food with behavioral-science research about how mirroring another person’s behavior promotes socialization. They find that when people have limited information about each other, eating the same food can increase camaraderie. That, in turn, can lead to trust and cooperation.

In lab experiments, the researchers had two strangers play a game in which one person acted as an investor and the other a fund manager. The “investor” was more likely to invest in the fund manager when they had first eaten similar foods. Strangers who ate similar foods also were able to resolve a mock strike faster and with fewer costs....MORE 
One final note on Alferd:
In 1993 Trey Parker and Matt Stone, while studying at UC-Boulder, wrote and produced "Cannibal, The Musical".

They subsequently created South Park, a series about a little town in Colorado.