Scientists think they've found the reason overhearing cell phone conversations makes the average person's blood boil. It's because hearing half of a conversation takes more concentration and attention than hearing both sides of a talk, say Cornell University scientists.
According to this Reuters story, hearing half of a story is more difficult to tune out than a whole story. So if you ever wondered why you're so irked that you're hearing a guy gripe about a bad date he had, it's probably because you're trying to fill in the gaps for yourself (and you're also guessing incorrectly).
With Americans spending more than 2 trillion minutes on cell phones, there are infinitely more chances to get caught up in half of a conversation that you wouldn't want to hear given the choice.
The Cornell scientists did research with students that involved concentration exercises. Students made more errors guessing how conversation would go when they heard just one side.
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