Heart Happy (cathy_edgett) wrote,
Heart Happy

space -

I believe most, if not all of us, are territorial.  Hannah Holmes explores "My Space" in Orion magazine.   Her essay is adapted from her book, The Well-Dressed Ape: A Natural History of Myself.

I place the last paragraph of the essay here as it has pieces to entice.

"In addition to defending my core area, I also maintain a bubble of space that surrounds me wherever I go.  I feel it bump up against competitors when I stand in line at the grocery store, and my bubble shudders with irritation when another driver cuts in front of me or follows too near behind. In fact, one of the seminal studies on human territoriality focused on drivers.  In 1997, a sociologist measured the time it takes for a driver at a shopping mall to vacate a parking space.  He found that a human takes seven seconds longer when another human is waiting for the space.  And if the waiting human blasts his horn, the occupant will defend the temporary territory for an additional twelve seconds.  This shocked me, as a human who often hustles to accommodate my fellow humans.  Even more shocking was this detail: males (and only males) will actually abandon a territory more quickly if the intruder is driving a more expensive car.  Females are either unimpressed by such status displays, or like me, they don't know their Alfa from their Edsel."


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