Monday 2 July 2012


Once again, PNAS abdicates its mandate and lets this most unscientific crap infest what are widely regarded to be its rigorously empirical pages. 
I'm so very tired of seeing this tripe repeated again and again. Whenever there's a circle and a line superimposed in the rock art record, they're automatically (and I mean knee-jerk automatic) interpreted as female genitalia. Nothing new in this now [forgive me] somewhat stale story from [I've been otherwise occupied and was unable to opine until this afternoon.]
     In the first place, the interpreters have clearly never seen a vulva! If they had, they'd know that there's no circle or oval in which appears the vertical line described by the vagina-obscuring labia minora in their unexcited state. 
     If anything [think about it, boys and girls], an observer looking straight at that vertical line would see anything but a circle or an oval. They'd see the hourglass described by the woman's inner right and left thighs, with the vertical line in the centre. Depending on the angle, they might see the navel. A circle? Are they kidding?!!
     Randy White ought to be ashamed of himself for making this claim. But Harold Dibble can be congratulated for his understated and oh-so-professional response to the claim.
As for the long-standing tradition among archaeologists working in France of interpreting such images as vulvas, Dibble says, "Who the hell knows" what they really represent? Dibble adds that such interpretations could be colored by the worldview of Western archaeologists whose culture probably differs greatly from that of prehistoric peoples. "Maybe it's telling us more about the people making those interpretations" than the artists who created the images, Dibble says.
You think???!!! You can't even blame this on androcentrism! This is pure fabrication!  
     This petroglyph from Abri Castanet resembles nothing so much as a horseshoe crab. But a horseshoe crab petroglyph at 37 kya wouldn't make PNAS. So they make this shit up and get it published. I'm, frankly, disappointed.
     In fact, I'm so disappointed, I'm gonna crack a bottle of my favorite rum: 
That's 300 years, folks. In fact, they've been making it in Barbados, traditionally thought to have been the birthplace of rum, since before 1651. A document from that year contains this almost inscrutable sentence: 'The chief fuddling they make in the island is Rumbullion, alias Kill-Divil, and this is made of sugar canes distilled, a hot, hellish, and terrible liquor.'
     I've never heard it called a fuddling before, but if you think about it, what else does booze do but be'fuddle' the mind. 'Fuddling' would be a natural nominative for such a substance.
     Anyway. They didn't have Coca-Cola in them days, so Ima drink it with some cold water and a splash of orange juice. Care to join me?

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  1. Your tag "horseshoecrabiform" sums it up. If I recognized that as a vulva I'd double-check that I wasn't in an early Cronenberg film.

  2. Well I don't know about the rockart (it actually resembles the power switch on my computer more than anything, and if that is a vulva then... hmmm...), but the map on your rum bottle label sure looks awfully phallic.

  3. I truly LOVE your new handle, B.
    If I saw that map outline on a cave wall, I''m with you. A phallus is definitely the first thing that'd cross my mind! But then, since the accident, nothing looks the same as it used to. ;-)


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