Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Orly? (revisited)

Unexpected phraseology in academic discourse:
A commenter at Righteous Insolence points out that the plural of 'anecdote' is not 'bukkake'.

This comes in response to people being mean about an insubstantial science-fair project by Platek, Burch and Gallup (2002), inexplicably published in what appears to be a real journal and recently in the news.* Criticisms include:
  • the authors' apparent unawareness that many of the hormonal contents of semen can have no effect on mood (even if they enter the recipient's bloodstream) because of a little-known phenomenon called the 'blood-brain barrier';
  • the curiously antiquated Symbolist / fin de siècle quality of the hypothesis that women need regular doses of male semen to maintain their proper cognitive function;2
  • their casual assumption that the direction of causality runs from "having sex without a condom" to "improved mood", rather than vice versa, or from some third variable affecting both;
  • their general uninterest in controlling potential third variables.
Miffed, the authors wrote to an Authoritative Website to defend their reputations. And to mention their semen testimonials.

UPDATE: Bonus Platek et al.:
There is growing evidence that human semen has the potential to produce profound effects on women.
Another RI commenter responds:
Yes. For instance, it can cause them to harbor a massive internal parasite for nine months, followed by another eighteen years of debt...
I could add several hundred words here, describing the particular strand of fin de siècle misogyny that viewed women as lacking in brain and spirit, making them sexually-insatiable vampires, compelled to suck seminal essence from men to compensate for their incompleteness. There was an explicit magical-thinking equation between semen and cerebral tissue: men could apparently expend one, or the other, but not both. Hence the popularity of the Salome motif in art, drama and music (and Judith to a lesser extent, as a less-familiar emasculator decapitator of men). But that would involve the Explaining Voice.

Thank goodness we've moved on from all that vile bullshit now.

UPDATE3 for mikey in comments: Bonus decadent literature.
Consider this a sneak preview of the next "Gardening with AK" column.


Smut Clyde said...

Time was when getting traffic from people searching from "semen testimonials" meant something. It has all been cheapened by Platek &c writing to PuffHost.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

The magic antidepressant industry is not happy with Riddled's attempts to fill their profits with holes.

fish said...

I have just now learned that I have a large jar of antidepressants in my basement.


Substance McGravitas said...

We have also received numerous semen testimonials from other women

Add this to the uncountable number of filmed testimonials in which women beg for sperm and you really have something.

Katie said...

If semen is a magical antidepressant, it stands to reason that rates of attempted suicide and depression would be lower among gay/bi men than among straight men.

Oh, wait.

The misogyny underlying this "study" is disturbing enough, but when you consider the fact that unprotected sex is a *risky behavior*, there's a whole new level of ick on top of it.

Never mind the risk of painful and possibly deadly infections and disease, ladies! You want to be HAPPY, don't you?

Katie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Katie said...

It stands to reason that gay/bi men would experience the antidepressant properties of semen, as well, right?

Wait, what?

The best part of this is that having unprotected sex is a *dangerous behavior*, especially for women. But you know, it's totally worth it to risk infection, (possibly deadly) disease, and unwanted pregnancy for happiness, right?

Sorry about those two deleted comments, by the way. I haven't had my semen yet this morning.

Katie said...

And it seems that no matter WHAT I DO, this damned blog refuses to stop using my Google account.

I should probably make it a double-dose today.

fish said...

Katie, I accept paypal.

mikey said...




W/V takes exception, issues threat:rotshiv

vacuumslayer said...

the plural of 'anecdote' is not 'bukkake'.

Oh dear. This is embarrassing.

Katie, I accept paypal.

I'm sorry. I only accept magic sperm.

tigris said...

Blood-brain barrier just means skull-fucking is the preferred delivery vector. Also, nothing cures depression like a getting yourself a shiny new disease.

fish said...

I only accept magic sperm.

Maybe not magic, but certainly a miracle.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

Time was when getting traffic from people searching from "semen testimonials" meant something.


Semen Sermons? Spermons?

H. Rumbold, Master Barber said...

One just has to refer to the etymology of testimony to see the truth of the assertion. Not to mention the chaise percée business for the prevention of another Pope Joan. I told you not to mention the chaise percée business!

Katie said...

fish, it's T&U. I don't need to pay!

fish said...

Yet another small business opportunity lost. Dr. Mrs. fish will never believe the jar has value now.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

Sounds like feesh is going to have spend the weekend doing yard chores.


M. Bouffant said...


In The Silence Ester also feels the need of confession as death approaches. She confesses to the old waiter of the hotel that she has not married because she hates the rotten smell of men's semen.

Smut Clyde said...


We have received a legal opinion from the Riddled Grammar Pedantry Department that the apostrophe is in the wrong place, i.e. the product was patented by brothers James and William Horlick and should therefore be "Horlicks'".

In further developments,
The term was used in July 2003 by British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw ("a complete Horlicks"[2]) to describe irregularities in the preparation and provenance of a dossier regarding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

mikey said...

I can relate. I used to live in a place in Los Gatos that had some kind of plant growing somewhere that smelled like that.

Two words:

Nas. Tee.

Substance McGravitas said...

Las Goatse.

Smut Clyde said...

It always comes back to goatse. A vicious circle.

Another Kiwi said...


ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

Jack Straw.

From Wichita.

guitarist manqué said...

From Wichita.

I was at that show.


am not

mikey said...

Far from this Op Er Ah for ever more
Gonna work the straw
Make the sweat drip out of every pore