Don't Blink

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Mary Ellen O'Toole, a former FBI profiler and the co-author with Alisa Bowman of Dangerous Instincts: How Gut Feelings Betray Us, says that relying on fear and emotion won't keep us safe.


Mary Ellen O'Toole

Comments [12]

Sophie from poughkeepsie, ny

@Ed Townes from Bklyn

Very nicely put.

Dec. 08 2011 12:24 PM
Sophie from Poughkeepsie, NY

Listening to my gut has served me very well through the years. Couple 'gut instinct' with knowing facts or seeing patterns and then you have it made. Always listen to your gut, it served our ancient humans well, allowing us to be here today.

Dec. 08 2011 12:22 PM
Ed Townes from Bklyn

Is there a producer for this show? Someone over 21 with a working brain?

I'm incensed, because there are good laws on the books preventing Tom, Dick or Harry (if they don't happen to be lawyers) from offering legal advice. Ditto "investing advice."

So, you have a WONDERFUL guest who says to a listener with a "nanny" issue - "I shy away from answering such questions because so much more information is needed than 'I suspect' ."

So, what does Brian - a basically intelligent but now reaching so desperately for web traffic that it's scary host - do?!

"Listeners, what advice do YOU have for Barbara?"

There's a rather crude formulation - that I'll sanitize as follows: Opinions are like certain body parts (think of one that's almost always well hidden) - everyone has one!

WNYC and its listeners deserve better than this type of opinion soft porn. Let listeners weigh in on whether Obama is better than Newt or Mitt - that's harmless.

But when you're advising someone about how her child's care-giver should be interrogated, there ARE consequences for advice in 140 characters or less, and most of those consequences are negative!

Please Brian and any other personnel connected with this show - try to get back to an
b.s. from listeners
of 10-to-1 or higher. The mix has gotten more and more toxic over time.

Dec. 08 2011 12:19 PM
Mike from Inwood

Before Barbara even asks her nanny about the watch, maybe she should start by searching for it. It's easy to suspect people when items are simply misplaced. Perhaps the nanny would ask her what she's looking for which would naturally lead to the conversation Amy from Manhattan suggests.

Dec. 08 2011 12:04 PM
Susan Lee from Manhattan

I'm curious about her experience while she was with the FBI on how she or the agency would handle cases where people would be conned by those they met on a dating website. And what she recommends for those people whose identities have been highjacked by such con artists who use photos and information of the unfortunate souls in order to con their victims.

Dec. 08 2011 12:01 PM
Amy from Manhattan

And Brian, I agree w/Nick. Take care of your cold & feel better soon! And don't remove your larynx--you wouldn't be able to talk!

Dec. 08 2011 11:59 AM
Amy from Manhattan

Maybe Barbara could start by asking her housekeeper (nanny?) if she's seen the watch or moved it, so she's not coming right out & accusing her?

Dec. 08 2011 11:56 AM
Inquisigal from Brooklyn


I wish I had read her book before I hired people to renovate my home; some of the people I was most impressed by in the estimating phase (and who came across as having the best social skills) were actually the ones who flaked and whom I was disappointed by; and the ones who maybe made a less impressive personal or stereotypically "professional" impression were the ones who did amazing work and were very thorough, and whom I felt I could count on.

Dec. 08 2011 11:55 AM
Allison from Brooklyn

How do you get to observe people with others, in such a short time like a roommate interview?

Dec. 08 2011 11:55 AM
EM from Manhattan

How do the theories in this book relate to what Gavin deBecker says about gut feelings in the Gift of Fear?

Dec. 08 2011 11:54 AM
Frank from NYC

how does she think you can tell if someone is lying when talking on the telephone? no eye contact, facial clues to help....

Dec. 08 2011 11:52 AM
Nick from UWS

Brian! I'm sorry to hear you are not feeling well. Go home and rest! Take it easy! Feel better soon! - Your fan - Nick - Manhattan

Dec. 08 2011 11:42 AM

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