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Sushi, Piercings, and the age when we start getting set in our ways

05/02/17 | by david2 [mail] | Categories: Web Wanderings

Link: http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/1998/03/30/open-season-2

I ran into this article in 1999 and spent 20 years trying to find it again!

INVESTIGATIONS about why we reject novelty as we age. The writer, a professor of neuroscience at Stanford University, irritated by his young administrative assistant’s eclectic taste in music, tested whether there any maturational time windows during which we form cultural tastes. He and his research assistants called oldies radio stations, sushi restaurants in the Midwest, and body-piercing parlors and asked the managers when their service was introduced, and how old their average customer was. They found that if you’re more than thirty-five years old when a style of popular music is introduced there’s a greater than ninety-five per cent chance that you will never choose to listen to it. For sushi restaurants, the window of receptivity closed by age thirty-nine; for body-piercing, by twenty-three.

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