Total Solar Eclipse coverage
- Meet a solar eclipse baby born during totality in Chattanooga [video, photos]
- Thrillseekers take to Ocoee River for solar eclipse viewing
- Thousands of solar eclipse tourists flood Spring City, Tenn.
- Athens locals and tourists have 'lifetime experience' viewing eclipse
- Several babies born in Chattanooga during solar eclipse
- Greeson: Will Great American Eclipse lead to next great American moment?
- VIDEO: Time-lapse of sky darkening at Tennessee Aquarium during solar eclipse
- Wiedmer: Could watching the eclipse really cost Bama a national title?
- Solar eclipse lights up Chattanooga Bakery-made MoonPie sales
- VIDEO: NASA streaming the eclipse as it begins in Oregon
- Crowds gather for eclipse in Athens
- Traffic at a standstill on US-27 heading into Dayton [video]
- Chattanooga Bakery offers year's supply of Moonpies for best photo or tweet today
- Thousands to converge on Spring City, bracing for eclipse [photos]
- Eclipse watchers flocking to Tennessee sites
- Americans stake out prime viewing spots to see sun go dark
- Wiedmer: Eclipse an especially big deal in Hopkinsville, Ky.
- Off the Couch: Glasses on and ready for total solar eclipse
- Why is the eclipse longer in some places than in others?
- Solar eclipse viewers expected to put pressure on road systems
- How to stay healthy during the solar eclipse
- Clear skies expected for total solar eclipse
- The best way to see an eclipse is in the biggest crowd
- An eclipse chaser's guide to your first eclipse
- Experts offer advice for taking eclipse photos with your smartphone
- Eclipse times for Southeast Tennessee cities
- Eclipse gatherings around the region
- Easily-made 'pinhole projector' always an option to view solar eclipse
- Special eclipse glasses selling out quickly
- Here are 30 stellar locations for making memories during Monday's solar eclipse
- Bonnie Tyler to sing 'Total Eclipse' hit during eclipse
- More than spectacle: Eclipses create science and so can you
- Southeast Tennessee guide to the total solar eclipse [photos]
- Total Solar Eclipse expected to draw thousands to Tennessee
- 5 questions answered about the solar eclipse
- Celestial celebrations: Party planners getting ready for eclipse [photos]
- Hamilton County schools to close for total solar eclipse
- Here are 22 places in East Tennessee to watch the solar eclipse
- U.S. in rare bull's-eye for total solar eclipse on Aug. 21
- What's a total solar eclipse and why this one is so unusual
- Total solar eclipse 1st in 99 years to sweep width of US
- Solar eclipse mania spurs festivals, tours, sold-out hotels
Millions of people will be seeking totality for Monday's solar eclipse. Some warn of a "zombie apocalypse," as hordes strain the resources of towns more accustomed to hosting pancake breakfasts than Coachella-size events.
Don't worry. Here are three reasons human-behavior researchers say that you made the right decision to experience the eclipse in a crowd - even if the portable toilets overflow.
Why is it that excitement can feel so much more intense when we're in a group with others feeling the same emotion? Fergus Neville, a social psychologist at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, believes this results from seeing our emotions reflected in the faces of others, which validates our own experience and amplifies the intensity of our feelings.
Using surveys and heart-rate measures, he has measured this magnification process.
"I think that you can have the experience with small groups, but that the more people you see in your group who are sharing your experience, then the stronger the validation effect and thus the stronger the experience," he said in an email.
Connecting With Strangers
Why is it much easier to connect with strangers in some crowds than others? The critical ingredient, researchers say, is a sense of shared social identity. That's something that is virtually guaranteed in a field full of people in matching eclipse glasses.
"Emotional intimacy with strangers" is something relished by all kinds people, even those who may not seem as if they are looking for it, Neville has found. Soccer fans, for example, cite this as one of the primary benefits of watching in a group.
It's Like Nothing Else
Even though there's little research that shows how eclipses affect humans, that's not to say they don't, said Dr. Norman Rosenthal, a clinical professor of psychiatry at Georgetown School of Medicine: "The adrenaline rush you get must be similar to parasailing or coming down in a parachute."
And it's that feeling, amplified by the enthusiasm of strangers, that is inspiring him to travel to a hub of clogged wireless networks to experience totality yet again.