Adventures in Factoids: The Great Birthday Gap


Joyce Carol Oates tweets:

Stunning data: though 91% of women remember virtually all birthdays of relatives, friends, etc., mere 8% of men remember more than one.

Is this true? Or just too good to check? I have to say I’m skeptical. My memory sucks pretty badly, but even I can remember half a dozen birthdays. So that’s a data point against the 8 percent theory. On the other hand, it’s true that these are all birthdays of immediate family members. With one exception outside of that—a friend whose birthday is the same as my mother’s—I’m pretty clueless. Though, oddly enough, I remember Matt Yglesias’s exact birthdate because he turned 10 the day I got married. And Jim Henley shares my birthday, so I remember that. I’m not really sure any of these coincidental dates really count, though.

Still, 8 percent? That just hardly seems likely. I demand Scientific Evidence™.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

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In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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