Rules of Attraction

Let\’s talk about attraction
[kiss]From the moment we leave the house, our heads turn for many reasons. In an attempt to break it down, you’ll meet six people willing to expose what could possibly get the shirt off their back and hopefully reveal something about their hearts as well. Before delving into their stories, let’s review some psychology from allpsych.com. Their research found five key factors of attraction: proximity, association, similarity, reciprocal liking, and, of course, physical attraction. But you probably already knew that.
According to an article by livescience.com, the scent someone produces can be an incredibly attractive quality. While the article notes that physical features drive initial attraction, mental features drive long term attraction. Bjorn Carey writes, “When it comes to sticking together for the long haul, researchers have shown that likeness of personality, which can take more time to realize, means more.” As you’ll see from the following stories, all the research in the world could not predict what exactly will attract you to someone (and don\’t we all enjoy a little mystery in our attractions?). To explore this case-by-case science, we meet six people willing to tell you what turns them on.
Burn baby, burn
Journalism senior Matt Lieber faces an interesting dilemma. Upon receiving reciprocal liking, he loses attraction. “I don’t like people who play hard to get, yet when someone is attracted to me I tend to lose interest,” said Matt. Lieber is unsure where this stems from, but offers that a past relationship may be the cause. “I’m not sure if it was that, or that I just hadn’t noticed it until now.”
This begs the question, how did his current relationship pass the hurtle? “I always felt like she was better than me and to be honest, I liked that,” said Lieber. “It was like she was on a different level then me and she was batting down.”
For Lieber, attraction is pretty simple; his number one quality comes without hesitation: wit. “I feel like you can change a lot of your choices when it comes to types of women, but that wouldn’t change,” said Lieber. Basically, winning his heart is as simple as attacking his ego. “Burn me and do it really well,” he said. But as it goes, everyone has their interpretation of what’s a unique aesthetic turn on, and for Leiber, it comes in the form of fabric. “Denim jackets. I don’t know what it is, but it’s attractive,” he said.
Lessons in love
International relations senior Chris Gregg is a bit of the romantic type. He looks deep into a woman\’s soul and is interested in the way she presents herself. “Confidence is number one – not being afraid to share or care what other people are saying,” said Gregg. He has been in love twice and he describes the experience as “caring unconditionally,” and after much thought he added, “It’s not finishing each others\’ sentences, it’s saying something and having them at the same time say the same thing, that’s what I call ‘being on the level.’”
In addition, he recognizes the whole picture – although he emphasizes the face as a significant feature – he feels it’s everything together that causes his attraction. His quirk? “Back dimples.” Back dimples (for those not privy) are the two dots similar to dimples on the curves of the lower back. “My girlfriend has tattoos over hers, red and blue sparrows,” Gregg said, and for him, that is the most interesting turn on.
Twin bar stars
Advertising senior Sarah Gonzalez and packaging senior Jessie Krawczak are best friends who frequent the bar as self-proclaimed “boo-less” women, a.k.a., they\’re single. Almost on command they revealed their joint desire for someone to cuddle with. This is the most attractive quality to them and a deal breaker. In unison they sighed longingly when asked how smell factors into their attraction. “When you borrow a shirt and you can lift it up and smell their scent, that’s attraction,” said Krawczak, closing her eyes to reminisce. Both women are convinced that their perfect man will be able to condone their ridiculousness. “We like scenes,” said Gonzalez. “And we want a guy willing to make one.”
Show me your hands
English Junior Jennifer Rice is on a different path to relationships – she’s interested in hands. “Hands represent lots of things: strength, workers\’ hands, musicians\’ hands, or an artist…you can tell a lot about someone,” she said, smiling. Unlike many, Rice isn’t all that interested in looks when it comes to attraction. It\’s charisma that gets her attention. \”A guy can be fat and bald, but if he has that quality to put people at ease,” she paused, “I’m smitten.” So beyond having good hands and the ability to charm her, your chances of seeing her again outside the bar lie in the ability to strike up an intelligent conversation. “And buy me a drink,” she said with a smirk.
Spiritual attraction
Political science senior Alex Cobern, our last character, is interested in something much deeper: religion. “I probably wouldn’t find someone at a bar,” he said. “More likely at church or a bible study.” Alex is convinced that of the three girls he dated in high school, he could marry each of them. “They all have the things I look for in girls: faith, but willing to try new things and are still open minded.”
The thing that really grabs his attention, however, is eyes. “I have a weakness for eyes,\” said Cobern. \”It’s the most unchanging thing about someone – they’re timeless.” Like many mentioned before him, he finds confidence and opinions to be extremely attractive, “however, I don’t like arrogance,” he said. “I think the line is crossed when someone is talking too much about themself.” For him, “being on the level” is “when you start chatting and there are laughs in between and then it just keeps going without hesitation.”
Find \’the level\’
[heart]So what did we learn from this exercise – wear denim jackets and moisturize your hands? Not exactly, but it’s clear that confidence is key, humor and conversation are a huge turn on, and sometimes it’s just a matter of “being on the level.” This Valentine\’s Day, instead of stressing about making yourself more attractive to someone else, just take a tip from the people above: be yourself and be confident. And stick to your quirks – they\’re what make you you, even if it\’s back dimples.

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A Healthy New Year to You

[squash2]Additional holiday weight shouldn’t come as a surprise, considering the amount of calorie-heavy foods eaten from Halloween to New Years. Most Americans only gain about a pound during the holiday season, but this weight can accumulate over a lifetime, according to a study by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. You don\’t have to give up holiday favorites like cookies and cakes, just make some simple food substitutions and get a head start on your weight-loss New Year\’s resolution.
Go veggie
Vegetarian dishes and appetizers are a great way to maintain a healthy level of eating around the holidays. “People are eating too much sugar and they need to steer more toward whole grains,” said Laurie Snyman of the Vegetarian Express, a company dealing only with all-natural items and is vegan-friendly. Snyman\’s website, www.TheVegetarianExpress.com, offers a variety of spices, soups, cookies and burger mixes. One of the most popular seasonings is the Parma Zaan Sprinkles. Snyman contends this is the perfect seasoning for popcorn and gives it an extra kick. Another Veggie Express staple is the cookie mix. “There are no bad sugars in this, it\’s all natural and you just add oil and water,” said Snyman.
Elizabeth Kersjes, a journalism sophomore and a vegetarian, discovered cooking her own food is a great way to eat healthy. “You can make food that has a lot more fruits and vegetables and less fat and preservatives than store-bought options.” Kersjes also said vegan desserts are another option for cooking without butter. “Not that everyone should be vegan for the holidays, but it\’s always fun to try a few new things out,” said Kersjes.
Co-op it
One place to find healthy food items is the East Lansing Food Co-Op, located at 4960 Northwind Drive. Their dedication to healthy living will make it easy to find any ingredients you are looking for without having to scan labels. Vegetarian Express items such as the Parma Zaan Sprinkles and burger mixes can also be found there. While organic items can take a bit out of the wallet, Co-Op employee Jessica Wedge stressed that there are regular sales to compensate. She recommended SoyaToo, a dairy-free whipped topping, for those special holiday desserts.
The co-op has a displayed list of items, compiled partially by Wedge, as well as many other magazines and pamphlets, to help customers eat healthier around the holidays. Wedge said the co-op has easy-to-do vegetarian appetizers as well as organic produce, much of which is local.
Feeling organic?
The newest eatery on M.A.C., Green River Café offers lots of organic and vegan options for students that don\’t have time to make their own meals. They offer vegetarian soups, sandwiches and smoothies that can be made vegan. According to employee John Drotar, the cafe is very flexible with their menu and can alter food items to fit a party\’s interests. They recently created a menu with Indian flair for a group coming in for a birthday party.
Work it off
MSU senior Erin Holcomb say she\’s interested in the benefits of eating vegetarian around the holidays, but will probably depend on exercise to keep holiday weight off. Holcomb plans to get a gym membership after the New Year and cut back on dairy products during the holidays. IM West and IM East both offer gym memberships (for fitness room only) for 75 dollars per semester. They offer group exercise and pool access for 105 dollars per semester. Holcomb is planning to add cardio to her work out to shed holiday pounds as well as adding items with higher protein content to her diet. Exercise is the perfect addition to dieting around the holidays. The DNP and CDC stress combining exercising with eating right, noting that you need to \”balance the calories you consume with the calories you burn.”
The holidays do not have to be stressful and neither does eating. Here are some quick, easy recipes to help you ring in the new year:

VEGAN PUMPKIN SPICE CAKE
2 C. unbleached flour
1 1/2 whole wheat flour
2 2/3 c. Sucanat, brown sugar or raw sugar
1 T. molasses
1 cup chopped walnuts or 1/2 cup pecan/walnut meal
1 T. molasses
5 t. non aluminum baking powder
1 t. salt
1 1/2 t. ground spice (nutmeg, cinnamon, cardamon)
2 c. pumpkin puree
1 c. vegetable oil
2/3 c. coconut milk, mixed well
2/3 c. flaked coconut
Mix and put into a greased, square cake dish. Bake at 350 (till knife stuck in the center comes out clean) about 40-60 minutes. Let cool. Frost or sprinkle powdered sugar on the top. This cake is sweet, tender and flavorful.

APPLE SALSA (RAW FOOD)
2 Granny Smith apples, cored and cubed
4 tablespoons lime juice
1 fresh jalapeno pepper, seeded and sliced
1 fresh Anaheim chile, seeded and sliced
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, lightly toasted
1 t.ginger
1/2 c. maple syrup
1/2 c. dried cherries or cranberries
1/4 teaspoon All-Purpose Veggie Salt
In a large bowl, stir together apples and lime juice. Stir in jalapeno and Anaheim chile slices. Stir in onion, cilantro, walnuts, ginger, and salt. Mix thoroughly.

E-Z VEGAN MEXICAN DIP
1 can vegetarian refried beans
1 package taco seasoning
1 16 oz soy sour cream
1 c. soy mayonniase
1 bag soy cheese, cheddar-like
1 bag tortilla chips
1 pie pan
Mix seasoning, sour cream and mayo together. Layer the beans, sour cream mixture then cheese. Serve with chips.

PRETTY PUMPKIN DIP
4 c. sugar or substitute
2 (8 oz. each) pkg. Toffuti cream cheese, softened
1 (30 oz.) can pumpkin pie filling mix
2 tsp. ground cardamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
In a large mixing bowl, combine sweetener and cream cheese, beating until well blended. Beat in remaining ingredients. Store in airtight container in refrigerator. Serve with gingersnaps, animal crackers, pretzels, etc. Using a small hollowed out pumpkin is a great way to present the dip.
Makes about 7 cups of dip.

VEGAN MAPLE ICE CREAM
1 cup cashew nuts or almonds (no skins)
1 cup chopped, softened dried dates (soak in water)
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/2 t. salt
2 t. vanilla
6 cups water
Blend all ingredients in a blender till smooth. Pour into ice cube tray or glass dish. Freeze overnight. Remove 1 hour before eating and cut into squares. For smoothness, re-blend with 3/4 cup water and 1/2 of the squares. Add frozen bananas or use squares in your fruit smoothies.

Recipes courtesy www.TheVegetarianExpress.com

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Healthy Holidays to You

[squash1]Additional holiday weight shouldn’t come as a surprise, considering the amount of calorie-heavy foods eaten from Halloween to New Years. Most Americans only gain about a pound during the holiday season, but this weight can accumulate over a lifetime, according to a study by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. You don\’t have to give up holiday favorites like cookies and cakes, just make some simple food substitutions and get a head start on your weight-loss New Year\’s Resolution before January 1.
Go veggie
Vegetarian dishes and appetizers are a great way to maintain a healthy level of eating around the holidays. “People are eating too much sugar and they need to steer more toward whole grains,” said Laurie Snyman of the Vegetarian Express, a company dealing only with all-natural items and is vegan-friendly. Snyman\’s website, www.TheVegetarianExpress.com, offers a variety of spices, soups, cookies and burger mixes. One of the most popular seasonings is the Parma Zaan Sprinkles. Snyman contends this is the perfect seasoning for popcorn and gives it an extra kick. Another Veggie Express staple is the cookie mix. “There are no bad sugars in this, it\’s all natural and you just add oil and water,” said Snyman.
Elizabeth Kersjes, a journalism sophomore and a vegetarian, discovered cooking her own food is a great way to eat healthy. “You can make food that has a lot more fruits and vegetables and less fat and preservatives than store-bought options.” Kersjes also said vegan desserts are another option for cooking without butter. “Not that everyone should be vegan for the holidays, but it\’s always fun to try a few new things out,” said Kersjes.
Co-op it
One place to find healthy food items is the East Lansing Food Co-Op, located at 4960 Northwind Drive. Their dedication to healthy living will make it easy to find any ingredients you are looking for without having to scan labels. Vegetarian Express items such as the Parma Zaan Sprinkles and burger mixes can also be found there. While organic items can take a bit out of the wallet, Co-Op employee Jessica Wedge stressed that there are regular sales to compensate. She recommended SoyaToo, a dairy-free whipped topping, for those special holiday desserts.
The co-op has a displayed list of items, compiled partially by Wedge, as well as many other magazines and pamphlets, to help customers eat healthier around the holidays. Wedge said the co-op has easy-to-do vegetarian appetizers as well as organic produce, much of which is local.
Feeling organic?
The newest eatery on M.A.C., Green River Café offers lots of organic and vegan options for students that don\’t have time to make their own meals. They offer vegetarian soups, sandwiches and smoothies that can be made vegan. According to employee John Drotar, the cafe is very flexible with their menu and can alter food items to fit a party\’s interests. They recently created a menu with Indian flair for a group coming in for a birthday party.
Work it off
MSU senior Erin Holcomb say she\’s interested in the benefits of eating vegetarian around the holidays, but will probably depend on exercise to keep holiday weight off. Holcomb plans to get a gym membership after the New Year and cut back on dairy products during the holidays. IM West and IM East both offer gym memberships (for fitness room only) for 75 dollars per semester. They offer group exercise and pool access for 105 dollars per semester. Holcomb is planning to add cardio to her work out to shed holiday pounds as well as adding items with higher protein content to her diet. Exercise is the perfect addition to dieting around the holidays. The DNP and CDC stress combining exercising with eating right, noting that you need to \”balance the calories you consume with the calories you burn.”
The holidays do not have to be stressful and neither does eating. Here are some quick, easy recipes to help keep your holidays both festive and healthy:

VEGAN PUMPKIN SPICE CAKE
2 C. unbleached flour
1 1/2 whole wheat flour
2 2/3 c. Sucanat, brown sugar or raw sugar
1 T. molasses
1 cup chopped walnuts or 1/2 cup pecan/walnut meal
1 T. molasses
5 t. non aluminum baking powder
1 t. salt
1 1/2 t. ground spice (nutmeg, cinnamon, cardamon)
2 c. pumpkin puree
1 c. vegetable oil
2/3 c. coconut milk, mixed well
2/3 c. flaked coconut
Mix and put into a greased, square cake dish. Bake at 350 (till knife stuck in the center comes out clean) about 40-60 minutes. Let cool. Frost or sprinkle powdered sugar on the top. This cake is sweet, tender and flavorful.

APPLE SALSA (RAW FOOD)
2 Granny Smith apples, cored and cubed
4 tablespoons lime juice
1 fresh jalapeno pepper, seeded and sliced
1 fresh Anaheim chile, seeded and sliced
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, lightly toasted
1 t.ginger
1/2 c. maple syrup
1/2 c. dried cherries or cranberries
1/4 teaspoon All-Purpose Veggie Salt
In a large bowl, stir together apples and lime juice. Stir in jalapeno and Anaheim chile slices. Stir in onion, cilantro, walnuts, ginger, and salt. Mix thoroughly.

E-Z VEGAN MEXICAN DIP
1 can vegetarian refried beans
1 package taco seasoning
1 16 oz soy sour cream
1 c. soy mayonniase
1 bag soy cheese, cheddar-like
1 bag tortilla chips
1 pie pan
Mix seasoning, sour cream and mayo together. Layer the beans, sour cream mixture then cheese. Serve with chips.

PRETTY PUMPKIN DIP
4 c. sugar or substitute
2 (8 oz. each) pkg. Toffuti cream cheese, softened
1 (30 oz.) can pumpkin pie filling mix
2 tsp. ground cardamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
In a large mixing bowl, combine sweetener and cream cheese, beating until well blended. Beat in remaining ingredients. Store in airtight container in refrigerator. Serve with gingersnaps, animal crackers, pretzels, etc. Using a small hollowed out pumpkin is a great way to present the dip.
Makes about 7 cups of dip.

VEGAN MAPLE ICE CREAM
1 cup cashew nuts or almonds (no skins)
1 cup chopped, softened dried dates (soak in water)
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/2 t. salt
2 t. vanilla
6 cups water
Blend all ingredients in a blender till smooth. Pour into ice cube tray or glass dish. Freeze overnight. Remove 1 hour before eating and cut into squares. For smoothness, re-blend with 3/4 cup water and 1/2 of the squares. Add frozen bananas or use squares in your fruit smoothies.

Recipes courtesy www.TheVegetarianExpress.com

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