BS = smart |

BS = smart

I read some really exciting social research results this week. I now have scientific proof that I’m more intelligent than a significant portion of the population. Science now shows that people who have the ability and skill to bulls**t their way through a conversation are actually more intelligent than the average.

The “proof” is in a research study published in the scientific journal Evolutionary Psychology. The researchers found that people who are better at making up explanations for various concepts tend to be more intelligent than those who struggle to come up with BS. The study also concluded that skilled BS’ers were not necessarily frequent BS’ers. Researchers used 1,017 participants in two studies that examined correlations between cognitive ability, the willingness to BS, and the ability to do it well.

The participants were shown 10 concepts and asked to use a five-point rating scale ranging from “never heard of it” to “know it well, understand the concept” to rate their knowledge of the concepts. Six of these concepts, such as Sexual Selection Theory and General Relativity, were real, while four concepts — Subjunctive Scaling, Declarative Fraction, Genetic Autonomy, and Neural Acceptance — were made up. The willingness to BS was then measured based on those who claimed to have knowledge of these made-up concepts.

To determine the ability to BS, a group of 534 of these participants were asked to produce the most convincing and satisfying explanation that they could for each of the above concepts. They were told not to bother about whether they were actually true, but to just be creative and convincing while making up their explanations.

Then, another sample group of participants, termed as “BS-raters,” was asked to rate how accurate or satisfying these answers seemed using a five-point scale. The BS-raters were also asked to determine the intelligence of the participants in the former group.

Researchers found that most participants who were able to generate satisfying or seemingly accurate definitions of fake concepts also scored higher on a vocabulary test. Most of them also aced abstract reasoning and non-verbal fluid intelligence tests, which measured their ability to analyze and solve problems. Interestingly, the study also found that those who were good with their BS were not automatically willing to BS more just because they could.


Well, it sure feels good to know that a highly efficient, long-standing BS’er like me is also highly intelligent. Research proves it. Now, I’m not bragging because it ain’t braggin’ if its research proven.


Keeping along with the above theme, here’s a good example. The last couple of weeks I’ve been BSing about how dry and hot it’s been. A week ago there were cracks in the ground 3-feet deep. Well, the last few days, including today, have been cool and rainy — and the forecast is for more of the same for the rest of the week. All total, to date 6 inches of rain has fallen on Damphewmore Acres.

Now, which of the following numbers are BS numbers about the gallons of rain water that fell on Damphewmore Acres’ 22.5 acres — 50,169 gallons; 787,249 gallons, 1,649,605.5 gallons, or 3,665,790?

Hope you guessed the biggest number because that’s how it worked out. The three smaller numbers are BS numbers. The experts say that 1 acre-inch of water contains 27,154 gallons. You can do the math if you think that 3,665,790 is a BS number. Just multiply 27,154 gallons time 22.5 acres times 6 inches of rain.


While we got more than needed rain here, parts of the Flint Hills and all of southeast Kansas got drenched — even flooded. Parts of the Flint Hills 30 miles west of our home got upwards of 8-10 inches. So far, the water is only lapping at the top of my pond and hasn’t topped the dam.


I don’t need any more chickens because I have a tough time getting rid of the eggs I already get from my little flock — about 2-dozen per day. However, last week I was surprised that I had six old hens go broody within a few days. So, I figgered that, if nothing else, young chickens fry up good and old spent hens make tasty chicken and noodles.

So, I picked out a couple of hens — a Speckled Sussex and an Araucana crossbred — and put them down to hatch eight eggs each. If nuthin’ happens, the new chicks will arrive July 17.


My ol’ Missouri buddy, Canby Handy, stopped by for a few hours on his way back from a biz meeting in Wichita. We took a short hop through the local Flint Hills to catch up on our gossip before he headed back to the Show-Me state.


Words of wisdom for the week: “Whether a man winds up with a nest egg, or a goose egg, depends a lot on the kind of chick he marries.” Also, “How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?” Have a good ‘un.


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