He Who Gobbles All The Candy Corn

But who would you rather talk to at a party: the one who ate the marshmallow, or the one who let it be?

At this point, we’re all marshmallow-savvy. Let’s move it to the world of candy.

Tony and Steve share a secret vice: they are both mad for candy corn.

Leave Tony locked in a room with a giant bowl of candy corn for one hour. “That candy’s for the party, Tony. Don’t touch.” Come back and what will you find?  Full, bored Tony, zero candy corn. Leave Steve in the same situation, come back, and you’ll find only a few pieces of candy corn missing, and a patiently waiting Steve.

Move Tony and Steve to the bus stop. They are both in a hurry to get downtown, but the bus is late. 25 minutes late. Finally, a bus approaches. It’s the right bus, it looks pretty full, and it drives right past them. Steve looks annoyed and rolls his eyes. Tony starts sprinting down the sidewalk, shouting at the rain, and livestreaming his outrage.

Who do you think would be more fun to talk to at a party: fiery, candy-corn Tony or patient Steve? Which of these two do you think is generally more reliable and trustworthy: Tony or Steve?

If you’re like most people, you said: Party = Tony. Trust = Steve.

In multiple experiments, Dutch researchers Francesca Righetti and Catrin Finkenauer found that people are more likely to rate strangers and spouses who are high in Self-Control – the Steves – as more trustworthy.  When it comes to fun-time chit-chat, the spontaneous Tonys can seem far more appealing.

Header: Sheri Silver


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Elizabeth Newton

Elizabeth Newton