Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek. 

When scientists and brands get together, I seek entertainment.

After all, the scientist must know the brand is lurking. The brand must know that scientist is expected to produce fascinating results. 

There has to be a smidgen of tension, surely.

Not that I wish to besmirch either, of course.

I wonder, though, which of Barclaycard, Oxford University professor Robin Murphy and Harvard University researcher Matthew Sachs had the biggest goosebumps during their summer research activities.

You see, both scientists teamed up with the credit card company in an attempt to better understand goosebumps.  

These sudden apparitions -- which you surely get every time you open your credit card statement -- might, after all, say something about your being, your wellbeing or even your deepest personality core.

Conveniently, the scientists' research labs were concerts. Their lab rats were concert goers.

The Sachs study revealed that "emotional intensity, acoustic changes, and a crowd's familiarity of [sic] a song are key to predicting the likelihood of experiencing goosebumps." 

And there was I thinking that ingesting one chemical or another might have something to do with it.

Oh, apparently audience size, mood, ambience and environment might also have something to so with it.

How about love? How about whether one got promoted at work that day? 

Perhaps I'm too life-addled to fully appreciate the credit card's Summer of Goosebumps study.

Especially as winter is coming in far more ways than I can innumerate.

Still, the second part of this concert of research involved discerning what goosebumps say about you. 

Here, if the Daily Mail's pictures are to be believed, Murphy stood staring at his laptop looking for all the world like a rather suave DJ.

The research was, according to the Mail, "carried out to celebrate the benefits available to cardholders through Barclaycard Entertainment."

Ah. Oh. 

Please, though, see if you get goosebumps on hearing some of the results of this research.

88 percent of people who felt goosebumps during a concert said they felt happier. A mere 80 percent of those who didn't feel goosebumps said the same.

80 percent of those who felt goosebumps said they were empathetic and agreeable people. A piffling 63 percent of those who didn't feel goosebumps described themselves the same way.

More goosebumpers than non-goosebumpers claimed they were moved by creative activities such as baking, painting and writing.

(I'm getting goosebumps just writing this.)

Here, though, is the truly moving element that you should bear in mind, as your career soars. Or doesn't.

82 percent of those who didn't get goosebumps claimed to be confident. A frighteningly small 62 percent of the goosebumpers said the same.

Please may I lie down now?

I'm experiencing butterflies fluttering all around my stomach. 

What can this possibly mean?

Published on: Sep 14, 2018