Love is a many-splendored thing… and a very surprising thing, too. As if you needed proof of that, here are 23 funny little facts about love. Study them, scratch your head over them, and share them with someone you fancy.
1. Men who kiss their wives in the morning live five years longer than those who don’t.
2. The oldest known love song was written 4,000 years ago and comes from an area between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers.
3. Feminist women are more likely than other females to be in a romantic relationship.
4. Two-thirds of people report that they fall in love with someone they’ve known for some time vs. someone that they just met.
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5. People telling the story of how they fell in love overwhelmingly believe the process is out of their control.
6. Falling in love can induce a calming effect on the body and mind and raises levels of nerve growth factor for about a year, which helps to restore the nervous system and improves the lover’s memory.
7. Love can also exert the same stress on your body as deep fear. You see the same physiological responses — pupil dilation, sweaty palms, and increased heart rate.
8. Brain scans show that people who view photos of a beloved experience an activation of the caudate — the part of the brain involving cravings.
9. The women of the Tiwi tribe in the South Pacific are married at birth.
10. The “Love Detector” service from Korean cell phone operator KTF uses technology that is supposed to analyze voice patterns to see if a romantic partner is speaking honestly and with affection. Users later receive an analysis of the conversation delivered through text message that breaks down the amount of affection, surprise, concentration and honesty shown by the other speaker.
11. Eleven percent of women have gone online and done research on a person they were dating or were about to meet, versus seven percent of men.
12. Couples’ personalities converge over time to make partners more and more similar.
13. People are more likely to tilt their heads to the right when kissing instead of the left (65 percent of people go to the right!).
14. The tradition of the diamond engagement ring comes from Archduke Maximillian of Austria who, in the 15th century, gave a diamond ring to his fiancée, Mary of Burgundy.
15. Forty-three percent of women prefer their partners never sign off by writing “love” on a card unless they are ready for commitment.
16. People who are newly in love produce decreased levels of the hormone serotonin — as low as the levels commonly seen in people with obsessive-compulsive disorder. Perhaps that’s why it’s so easy to feel obsessed when you’re smitten.
17. Philadelphia International Airport finished as the No. 1 best airport for making a love connection, according to an online survey.
18. According to mathematical theory, we should date a dozen people before choosing a long-term partner; that provides the best chance that you’ll make a love match.
19. Every Valentine’s Day, Verona — the Italian city where Shakespeare’s play, Romeo and Juliet, took place — receives around 1,000 letters addressed to Juliet.
20. When we get dumped, for a period of time we love the person who rejected us even more according to Dr. Helen Fisher of Rutgers University, Chief Scientific Advisor for Chemistry.com and author of Why We Love. The brain regions that lit up when we were in a happy union continue to be active after the relationship ends.
21. There’s a reason why office romances occur: the single biggest predictor of love is proximity. Familiarity breeds comfort and closeness… and romance.
22. One in five long-term love relationships began with one or both partners being involved with other people when they met.
23. OK, this one may not surprise you, but we had to share it: having a romantic relationship makes both genders happier. The stronger the commitment, the greater the happiness!
Laura Schaefer is the author of Man with Farm Seeks Woman with Tractor.
Interested in taking Dr. Helen Fisher’s personality test? Visit Chemistry.com today!