Taking the Michael

Good old Barnaby Dixson. His academic career has just reached a cerebral climax and after years of difficult and intensive research he has had his eureka moment. And this is it: Men really can multi task. They can pretend to have a conversation with a woman while checking out her breasts and hip to waist ration in a nano-second.

Well; Duuh! C’mon Barnaby – the sole reason that mechanics adorn the walls of their workshops with unadorned boobs is because they know that breasts put blokes into a hypnotic trance for long enough to swipe the eftpos for 500 bucks when all that has been done are the spark plugs. Hardly the sort of stuff that wins Nobels.
barnaby dixson
Two things strike me as odd about this research:
1) wouldn’t the results have been more valid if the female subjects had been clothed? It’s pretty hard not to look at breasts when they’re jiggling all over the place.
And 2) who in the world funds this stuff? Apart from you and me that is.

I’m still waiting in feverish anticipation for the publication of Annamarie Jagose’s report on her study on the sex life of Aucklanders.
Remember her? This is an excerpt from Annamarie regarding the three year project only part of which was funded by a $150,000 grant from the Marsden Fund:
“My current research project is “Orgasmology,” a cultural history of the unique compactions of cultural meaning that have accrued to orgasm as well as the wide repertory of narratives that have taken orgasm as their figural vehicle across the twentieth century. In 2004, I was awarded a Vice-Chancellor's Strategic Research Development Award (2005-2006) to advance this research. Also as part of this work, I am currently a member of a collaborative University of Auckland team on a project; “Acts and Identities: Toward a New Cultural History of Sex.”

The report from that study will be out in a few months. I only hope someone can read it.

I had the dubious inorgasmic pleasure of being Annamarie’s student in the early nineties. I couldn’t understand a thing she said but in those times it was very unwise to say so – in the same way it would have been for young peasants in Maoist China to say that their leaders may have been talking utter bollocks. I vaguely remember writing an essay on phallogocentricism as an exercise in taking the Michael out of the language that we were bludgeoned with in those lectures. Convinced I would fail the essay, as I had absolutely no idea what the question meant and even I couldn’t understand what I had written, I would then be able to request that I be taught in a way more accessible for a westie farm girl. Appallingly – I got an A. I hadn’t so much cut through the non-speak as vindicated it. And I swear it wasn’t because I was looking at her breasts. It couldn’t have been because unlike the men in the first publicly funded study – I can’t multi task to save my life. The last time I tried it I lost my mobile phone. And found it 3 hours later – in the fridge.

Which is why I loved the findings from the Stanford University study last week that debunked the myth that woman are great multi-taskers. I have long suspected that this myth was created by blokes so that they could make the woman in their lives juggle 5 things at once while they reserved the luxury to do one thing exceptionally well. Leaving time to go and crack open a beer and watch the hapless multi-tasker go beserk when all the wheels inevitably come off at which point they lend some superior masculine advice.

When it comes to multi-tasking we are all equally useless - the knowledge of which may eventually make Barnaby Dixson’s study slightly more useful.
Girls: give a bloke a 5 second boob break - and then attempt conversation.
Remember – they can’t multi-task either.

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June 1, 2010 at 8:35 PM Anonymous said...

You my dear are a moron. Having not bothered to obviously read the paper or have any past knowledge of anthropolgoy or evolutionary biology you have made claims of Barnaby Dixsons work which are clearly unfounded. The basis of attraction, which is what this paper is leading to describing is merely one of multiple papers he has assisted in producing that answer many questions about what visual cues men use to rate attractiveness. Its easy for you to say its not a real contribution to science when you write on your blog about it, but try making a real contribution to science. I understand this is freedom of speech but how about you try respecting the contributions by those far greater and more talented than you.

Yours in faith


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