The Breakup Monologues, The Bullingdon, Weds 23rd october 2019
I entered the Bullingdon’s auditorium with a feeling of intrigue about what I was about to watch. Having never previously listened to a full podcast, I was about to witness one being recorded. So, I took my seat in the front row, and watched as Rosie took to the stage for a discussion about the science of heartbreak.
Rosie is an award-winning comedian and author, and she appeared unsurprisingly comfortable on the stage as she engaged us with her eloquent conversational style of presenting and keen wit. This was no mean feat considering she and her two guests were there to highlight the cultural insights that neuroscience can offer in regards to the way human beings react to breakups, divorces, and ghosting.
Within a few minutes, Rosie had discussed polyamorous relationships, added the word zombieing to our vocabulary, and enlisted guests (myself included) for her ‘aftershow sex party’. The tone of the evening had quickly been set – intriguing observations and irreverent humour relating to the science of love and heartache in the modern world.
Rosie was accompanied by evolutionary anthropologist and writer, Dr Anna Machin, and science communicator Charvy Narain. For the remainder of the recording, Rosie, Anna and Charvy discussed scientific observations in a way that’s relatable to anyone who has ever had their heart broken. The information and data came thick and fast, with conversation topics ranging from the similarities between our neurological reactions to love and drugs, to the eye-opening statistics relating to extra marital affairs. A sense of levity was maintained throughout the recording, and the trio of minds regularly commanded laughter and applause with their discussions. In one of the night’s most memorable observations, Charvy Narain compared the oxytocin rush derived from smelling a baby to taking a hit from a bong..
I walked away from the discussion with a smile on my face and a mind full of ideas. While I occasionally found the abundance of information bewildering, it was an enjoyable confusion, and I’m confident the knowledge that I managed to retain will change the way I look at relationships from this point onwards. If you’re partial to the odd podcast and want to hear the term zombieing explained, I would wholeheartedly recommend listening to Rosie, Anna and Charvy’s animated and jovial discussion.