Popcorn and ads don’t mix
Eating popcorn in the cinema may be irritating not just for fellow moviegoers, but for advertisers: Researchers from Cologne University have concluded that chewing makes people immune to film advertising. The reason why advertisements manage to imprint brand names on our brains is that our lips and tongue automatically simulate the pronunciation of a new name when we first hear it. Every time we reencounter the name, our mouth subconsciously practices its pronunciation. However, according to a study published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology, this “inner speech” can be disturbed by chewing, rendering the repetition effect redundant.
FN wins in by-election
The far-right Front National (FN) won a bellwether by-election on Sunday, cementing the party’s status as a political force to be reckoned with by capitalizing on economic gloom and fears of rising crime. The party’s candidate, Laurent Lopez, garnered 53.9 percent of the vote in the second round of the by-election in the southeastern town of Brignoles, officials in the Var department said. When Lopez made it into the run-off after the Oct. 6 first round vote, it sent shockwaves across the nation and prompted calls by the ruling left for a “republican front” to stem the party’s progress. The left, which had no candidate, had urged voters to choose the center-right UMP candidate Catherine Delzers, who Var officials said received 46.1 percent of the vote in Sunday’s ballot.
‘Terror tunnel’ found
The government on Sunday froze the shipment of building materials into Gaza after discovering a sophisticated “terror tunnel” into the Jewish state from the Palestinian territory, said Guy Inbar, spokesman for the defense ministry unit responsible for civilian affairs in the Palestinian territories. He did not say how long the ban would remain in force. Officials said that a tunnel running 450m into Israel and allegedly intended as a springboard for militant attacks had been uncovered by troops. Exposing the tunnel “prevented attempts to attack Israeli civilians and soldiers,” Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon said in a statement.
Moore sculpture stolen
A Henry Moore sculpture has been stolen from a Scottish park, police said on Sunday, the latest of several thefts of his works in recent years. The 1950 bronze, entitled Standing Figure, was one of four Moore works in the Glenkiln Sculpture Park near Dumfries in southwest Scotland. Moore, who died in 1986 aged 88, was widely regarded as Britain’s best 20th-century sculptor. Police Scotland said the theft took place between Thursday and Friday, and they were “conducting enquiries” and appealing for information on any “suspicious activity” in the area.