Posted in Simple Pleasures of Life

Simple Pleasures of Life #27

Treating yo’self.

I’m a firm believer in operant conditioning. When I start gearing up for exam study, I implement a reward system of giving myself a piece of chocolate after completing a lecture (or set amount of work). This motivates me to work faster, more efficiently and gets me revved up for study mode.

We just had our first (out of two) major exam today, hence another late post. See we have two massive exams at the end of 5th year that pretty much covers all of our clinical knowledge. Since we don’t have exams in our final year, this is pretty much THE exam for med school. That along with short cases which I had last week (practical clinical examinations). 

So for doing a good job, I treated myself to making nachos, playing Pokemon and watching copious amounts of TV. The Walking Dead has started and daaaaayam it be good!!! 😀 My original plan was to do a bit of study but screw it, daddy needs a break before starting study for the last exam… 

Anyway for those of you who are working your asses off… treat yo self.

Posted in Psychology & Medicine


Money is without a doubt a human invention. There are no recorded cases of any animal using an inanimate object to standardise the value of items and establish a non-bartering economy. Since childhood we learn of the value of money and how it can be used to purchase goods and services. In fact, money can be considered one of the fundamental pillars of human society that makes the world go round.

However, scientists have discovered that a currency system may not be such a novel system after all. In an experiment, a group of capuchin monkeys were given silver disks and were shown how they could use the disks as payment for a treat. Within a few months time, the monkeys realised that the disks had inherent value and began acting just like humans with money.

For example, they did not act in the standard way of operant conditioning (i.e. performing an action results in a reward), but responded to market forces in an accurate manner. If the “price” rose, their demand for treats would fall (i.e. buy less) and vice versa – following the law of demand that modern economics is based on. They even learnt to save the “money” to afford treats.
In a similar experiment with chimpanzees, it was found that chimps were even quicker in learning the concept of money and even learnt how to use smaller denominations of currency. 

Things started to get interesting when a certain monkey sneaked into the chamber storing the “coins” and threw it into the communal cage, quickly escaping before the researchers came back. This was the first recorded case of a monkey bank robbery
While this was happening, it was also observed that one male monkey was giving a female monkey a coin. The researchers wondered if this was an act of altruism or wooing, but soon discovered that the female monkey would receive the coin then have sex with the male, then later use the coin to buy food. The introduction of money immediately led to the invention of prostitution.