We all like to chat. Chatting fills the required amount of quality time we need to spend with out significant others. It's useful at parties. It is the raison d'etre for every teenage girl on the planet which they now can and do indulge in 24/7, thanks to cell phones.
Even though we all like to chat, women like it more. No, that's not a chauvinist talking. According to Dr Luan Brizendine, a female psychiatrist, "Women have an eight-lane superhighway for processing emotion, while men have a small country road." Her book, The Female Mind, explores this phenomenon. On any given day women are likely to say 3 times more words than a man. Apparently this triggers something in their brains that gives them a rush. They like it.
For some reason I rather enjoyed speculating about why women talk so much more than men. Knowing there is scientific research that says it's a chemical thing makes me yearn for the old days.
Science's explanation certainly explains what I saw yesterday on my commute. This summer I've seen quite a few more regulars going into work (I live in the city and thus go out to work). Of them there's two of who ride together pretty much every morning and even though there is a bike path right along the road they ride in the road. Since they seem very eager to get to work I certainly have no problem with that as anyone who works that hard at getting to work should be able to use any means available.
Today was different. Today they were riding side by side, and ever so slowly, while they... chatted. Both were upright with one hand on the bar and the other free for emphasizing, while they took more than half the lane. There must have been 15 cars behind them and not a one of them seemed real happy.
It would be bad form to look on this in any way other than nature running its course and them simply doing what they do - getting a good buzz on.