Archive for the ‘Mood Matters Book’ Category

More author insights on “Mood Matters”

Friday, November 5th, 2010

A new interview with John Casti is now available at  The author shares how the book was first conceived, and reveals additional experiences from his twenty years as a writer of scientific books.

Interview with John Casti at

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Skirt Lengths and Social Mood

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

Since publication of Mood Matters, several Internet sites have run articles on what the book calls The Skirt Length Indicator, which argues that as social mood rises so do the skirt lengths (as measured from the ground!). The told in the book is that it is the social mood that biases whether skirt lengths move up (as optimism about the future increases) or down (as people start fearing  the future rather than welcoming it). Unfortunately, in some of the articles posted the author seems not to have assimilated this point, claiming instead that I’m saying exactly the opposite: that skirt lengths serve to “predict how markets will perform”, as a piece in the June 24, 2010 issue of the British tabloid Daily Express phrased it. Similar statements appear in an article on the web site, where in a June 28 posting the author asks, “Can uplifted hemlines really change someone’s mood?”, going on to answer “Sure they can.”

While it’s gratifying to have Mood Matters cited as an authority in such august circles, I’m compelled to quote the following passage from the book itself:

“. . . one might even encourage fashion designers to contribute to saving the economy by having fashionable ladies wear shorter and shorter skirts. As that well-known fan of short skirts, JFK, put it, “Ask not what your country can do for you, but ask what you can do for your country!” Unfortunately, such a line of argument flies in the face of our Central Hypothesis, since it would suggest that an action (wearing short skirts) can contribute to formation of a view of the future (the social mood).”

Yet one more nail in the coffin of event causation!

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