Duke University official concerned that sex toy study will make students want to "just sit around and masturbate"

A Duke University study on sex toys has the University's Catholic Center director worried that female students will "just sit around and masturbate."

Life Lessons from the Vogelkop Bowerbird

vogelkopbowerbird.jpg

Lesson 1: When choosing gifts for your date, remember that girls prefer flowers to piles of fungus-ridden dung.

You know how some movies or TV shows are painful to watch because you see that a character is making some awkward mistake and you just know it will end horribly? This BBC video is similar. I kept thinking, "No, Mr. Vogelkop Bowerbird! Don't give her that! You'll never get mated!" But, honestly, I was thinking that at the flower-power fellow. Foolishly, I'd assumed that the lesson here was going to be something along the lines of, "Birds like things humans find repugnant and isn't that interesting."

Instead, the lesson turns out to be, "Everybody poops, but that doesn't mean they want to receive it as a gift."

VIDEO: Inside the Love-Den of the Vogelkop Bowerbird, BBC Life

Image courtesy the BBC, via Adam Abu-Nab

Transgender papaya

Transgender papaya: scientists change the sex of a tropical fruit to help farmers. With papaya, there are three options: male, female, "intersexed." The latter taste best, but don't breed so well. (via oxbloodruffin)

Homophobia in Venezuela

Police in Venezuela are rounding up gay/lesbian/bi/trans folk into vans and hauling them to jail by the dozens, according to reports. "Our IDs and mobile phones were taken away, we were beaten, [and] our sexual orientation was insulted." (Thanks, Antinous)

Will the Duggars Inherit the Earth?

In which I am inspired by a snarky comment on another blog.

My normal routine involves a fair amount of procrastination, but I tell myself that’s OK (really), because sometimes it leads to work ideas.

Read the rest

Guy in Egypt orders "artificial hymen kit" over the internet, blogs about it

hymen.jpgNews reports earlier this month created a global stir around an odd "made in China" product marketed to the Middle East - cheap artificial hymens. They're intended for use by brides who feel compelled to fake virginity, in countries where not being a virgin at marriage is a very big, very bad thing. Conservative Egyptian politicians wanted to ban the product. One curious (male) blogger in Egypt decided to order one.

Mohammad Al Rahhal picked up the contraband gyno-goods at his local post office in Egypt:

it had been opened by various puzzled customs and postal employees who, at a loss, defined the product in writing as "containing an unknown red liquid" - and awaited my description.
Al Rahhal told inspectors it was "cinematographic make-up," and took his hymen home.

Marwa Rakha over at Global Voices has more from Al Rahhal's product review (he explains how it works, sort-of NSFW if only for use of anatomically specific language). Also, a report at the UK Guardian.

Spoiler: Al Rahhal's verdict? This thing, and the thinking behind it, are totally stupid. "Morality is worst interpreted by anatomy," he says. Bravo, dude.

Hiding Your Sexual Orientation From Your Parents 101 (teen-made video)

Vincent Pearase, of Oak Park High School in Winnipeg Canada, writes:

One of our talented Oak Park students, Andrew Vineberg, helped make this hilarious short, Hiding Your Sexual Orientation From Your Parents 101. The kid is a vlogger, too. He does an amazingly erudite, funny vlog under the moniker Volatile Chemical. Check it out! Andrew has asked to show this at our next school assembly.

NSFW Science: Fruit Bat Fellatio

Yeah, I’m just going to put this whole NSFW thing behind the jump. Read on for an in-depth look at bat blow-jobs, and insights into the evolution of such work, in general.

Read the rest

I Submit This Brief In Support of Why We Should Totally Get It On

If America's law students continue to be this amusing, there may be hope yet for the future of America's lawyers. From Craigslist:

You & Me Doing It v. You & Me Not Doing It (2009)
Using that IRAC method we've been learning about, a compelling brief on why we should hump each other's brains out.

Facts, Issue, Rule, Analysis, and Conclusions follow.

Thanks to Sarahpi, one of my favorite lawyers-in-training!

The evolution of birth control in pictures

history of birth control.png Newsweek.com has a gallery of images that shows the evolution of contraception (or what we believed to be contraception at the time), from olive oil — recommended by Aristotle in the 4th century BC — to the hormone-releasing options that we can get at the gyno today. The History of Birth Control

Green Pink Caviar: Marilyn Minter

Susannah Breslin pointed me to Marilyn Minter 's latest video months ago, but I didn't get around to blogging 'til now. Green Pink Caviar is described as

A lush and sensual voyeuristic hallucination. Filmed with macro lenses, the video was inspired by a photo shoot where Minter directed her models to lick brightly colored candies while she shot photos from underneath a glass plate. The models' tongues mixed the colorful sugar with saliva, slurping and pushing color across the glass surface to simulate painting.
More: greenpinkcaviar.com, some viewer reactions, Los Angeles Times interview with the artist, NBC LA, and apparently there's some controversy over the billboard installation in Hollywood.

Scientist: Hugh Hefner Owes Everything to the Evolution of Color Vision

If we humans weren't so bare, we would probably not wear robes. And then there would be no reason to disrobe. If there were no bare skin, there would be no Hefner as we know it.

And, according to Mark Changizi from the Department of Cognitive Science at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, the reason we're bare is because we can see in color.

colorporn1.jpg

More talk of nudity and other dirty things after the cut...

Read the rest

Alligators Sing! (But Not to Attract Mates)

Chinese alligators like a good sing-a-long, but they don't worry about carrying a tune. They also don't much care what the opposite sex thinks of the song choice, according to a story on National Geographic News.

alligator.jpg

Researchers with the Chinese Academy of Sciences ran some tests to see whether alligator "songs"--it's really more like sustained, extremely loud croaking, which the researchers compare the sound to thunder--attracted mates to the singer. Surprisingly, it didn't work quite that way.

More story and a video of singing alligators after the jump!

Read the rest

Yahoo hires lap-dancers to entertain at its open, inclusive Hack Day event

Yahoo has apologized for paying lap-dancers ("Hack Girls") to grind against attendees at its Hack Day Taiwan open event. For the second year running.

Because, you know, it's the kind of thing that you can just accidentally do, hiring sex workers to come to your everyone's invited, inclusive Hack Day event. Two years in a row.

What a blot on technology culture this is. As a father of a young daughter whom I hope will be excited about technology, hacking, and making stuff, Yahoo's vile behavior makes me want to puke purple exclamation points. For shame.

I wanted to acknowledge the public reaction generated by the images of female dancers at our Taiwan Open Hack Day this past weekend. Our hack events are designed to give developers an opportunity to learn about our APIs and technologies. As many folks have rightly pointed out, the "Hack Girls" aspect of our Taiwan Hack Day is not reflective of that spirit or purpose. And it's certainly not the message we want to send about our values here at Yahoo!. Hack Days are about making everyone feel welcome, including women coders and technologists.

This incident is regrettable and we apologize to anyone that we have offended. Rest assured, it won't happen again.

Regrettable? I can think of some choice words to describe this, and regrettable is so far down the list that you'd need to scroll for a week to reach it. Love how this is all in the passive voice -- "the incident" is regrettable. As though it occurred in a vacuum, untouched by human hands. A kind of lightning strike of ghastly, stupid, boorish thoughtlessness. An act of God, perhaps.

Sorry

This shouldn't be the image of Hack Day

How Safe is the HPV Vaccine?

I was about to say that I'm just one of those people who understands things more fully once I see them in visual form, but I think that, when it comes to statistics, "one of those people" really just means "most of us".

Case in point, this great visualization of the facts about HPV vaccine safety and cervical cancer risk put together by the Information is Beautiful blog. For me, this really bridged the gap between knowing the facts and intuitively understanding them. Follow the link to check it out.