As December and peak mall season approaches, you may be wondering: “Hey, Anna, why the fuck do I always forget where I parked my car? Is it because my brain is shaped like a tampon? Is it because I have a run in my pantyhose? Is it because lipstick? What? Lipstick? Where! Give me some!”
Now we have an answer to this age-old question: according to a study out of the Netherlands reprinted in the Wall Street Journal, men and women use different spatial memory techniques to recall where they parked their car in a lot, and apparently ours are somewhat less efficient. When 115 shoppers were asked about their location strategies, researchers found that women were significantly more often to use landmarks (38% of us do this, as opposed to 18% of men). Out of 115 shoppers studied, 59% of women and 42% of men reported difficulty locating their cars in a 431-space lot, and 21% of women report taking 400-feet detours in the wrong direction before finding their vehicle—compared with 7% of men.
So, don’t use landmarks! Try drawing a map! Unless you think it will turn out like this.