- The Washington Times - Friday, February 15, 2008

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Valentine’s Day is a good time for men and women to attend to their lovers — just in case anyone else might be looking.

While both sexes tend to ogle beautiful people of the opposite sex, they also check out good-looking rivals who might show interest in their partner, a study shows.

The Florida State University researchers examined something that isn’t a surprise to anyone: People’s eyes are quickly drawn to someone attractive. But this being serious research, they gave it a serious name: “attentional adhesion.”

Jon Maner, an assistant professor of psychology, said human brains are designed to latch on to people’s attractive features in a quest to find the right mate, or to guard a sweetheart from rivals. “I was also surprised that jealous men paid so much attention to attractive men,” he said.

The professor’s findings were published in the September issue of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. Graduate students Matthew Gailliot, Aaron Rouby and Saul Miller co-wrote it.

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