BRISTOL, England, Dec. 1 (UPI) -- British researchers say women are more likely than men to give women's bodies a visual once-over.
Researchers at Bristol University came to their conclusions after asking volunteers to examine a range of different images, including pictures of couples in films, The Daily Telegraph reported Friday.
They found women spent 61 percent of their time looking at the women in the pictures, and only 39 percent on the men, while men seemed to spend just over half -- 53 percent -- of their time looking at the women.
"This is counter-intuitive from a sexual perspective if you are thinking about desire, but it's not surprising if you look at it in terms of sexual competition," said Felix Mercer Mos, a computer science doctoral student who led the study. "The women might be checking out their sexual rivals and comparing themselves with them."
He noted: "That's speculation of course -- I've no proof whatsoever."
The study also found that while men concentrated on the faces of the women, women's eyes tended to roam around the whole figure.
Kate Figes, author of books on relationships, said she wasn't surprised by the study's findings.
"We are always sizing ourselves up against the competition," she said. "It's because we feel threatened. It's quite a basic animal state. I'm sure if the gender states were reversed, men would do exactly the same."
Gorilla statue vanishes from Orlando hotel
ORLANDO, Fla., Dec. 1 (UPI) -- A gorilla statue valued at $5,000 was stolen from a poolside tiki bar in Florida, police said.
The 3-foot-tall metal statue disappeared from the Orlando Metropolitan Express last Monday.
Police told the Orlando Sentinel the gate to the pool area is left unlocked for the guests' convenience and there are no security cameras that would have caught the gorilla-napping.
Crooks clean out Victoria's Secret panties
SAN DIEGO, Dec. 1 (UPI) -- A couple of brazen young men waltzed into a Victoria's Secret shop in San Diego this week and waltzed out with about 300 pairs of panties, police said.
The shoplifters mixed in with the crowd hunting for alluring Christmas gifts at the busy downtown shopping center and made off with a shopping bag stuffed with the company's trademark panties, which don't take up a lot of room.
Police said the theft went undetected until employees noticed about half of their panty inventory was missing.
The Los Angeles Times said a careful inspection of the Victoria's Secret website revealed the prices for the missing panties ranged from three for $33 to four for $28.
Probation for bat-swinging Maui woman
WAILUKU, Hawaii, Dec. 1 (UPI) -- A Hawaii woman who cracked her boyfriend with a baseball bat told a judge her anger-management therapy was going pretty well.
Mirivic Simpliciano, 30, of Wailuku was placed on five years probation in a Maui courtroom this week after pleading no-contest to beating her boyfriend in April, and told the court she thought she now had a handle on things.
"After the incident, I took the initiative to get some help," Simpliciano said.
The Maui (Hawaii) News said the woman's public defender told Judge Rhonda Loo his client was indeed getting her feet on the ground with the help of a therapist.
But the judge wasn't entirely convinced. "You do have an anger problem," Loo told Simpliciano. "You need to keep it in check. If you don't keep it in check, I'm going to check you into prison."
The incident began when Simpliciano's boyfriend came in a little late one evening. She started out flailing at him with a foam-rubber bat and a toy light-saber. But she moved up from kid toys to the real deal and let him have it with a metal bat, the newspaper said.
"Couples argue, but most couples don't take it to the level of getting a baseball bat and using their boyfriend's body for batting practice," Loo said. "You did cross the line."
UPI Almanac for Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014