Sunday, July 16, 2006

Nearer my tabloid to thee

[Inspired by this (hat-tip: Uma)]

Geeks can be gods too

He can play the stolid professor to perfection, manage to solve vector equations in five dimensions, and have a body as sleek as a whippet. He's so difficult on the mind that you can almost be forgiven for not noticing his pretty face...almost.

Men use their brains to get ahead, as has been evident from the time that Donald Trump managed to hold prime time television viewers painfully tightly to ransom with his hairstyle. But which woman (cold-blooded and all that) was smart enough not to look beyond that mop of silly hair? Apparently not many.

Female Speak

Concurs Felicity Slacker, math major at the Ivy League University of North Dakota, "Obviously flighty undergraduates don't find their brilliant professors sexy because they have too many other things on their mind. If they just started looking below his neck for a moment, instead of concentrating on the equations he was writing in chalk on the board, they would realise that their calculus professor had washboard abs. The reason most women never get there is that they're too busy trying to figure out how to get from Lemma 6 to Proposition 8", she guffaws with a come-hither look.

Though her outlook is profound, how do academics see this lack of objectification?

Just a laughing matter

Says former Professor at MIT and Physics Red Giant Maxwell Housman, "I enjoy the fact that my women students sometimes think I don't have a body. It amuses me because they don't know how much I weigh. Plus it means they don't recognise me on the beach and so aren't always asking me stupid questions about cosmic radiation in the middle of my sun tan". On a more serious note, he adds "Your answer to Question 4 is wrong, by the way. You're getting a C for the course."

Not a laughing matter

Frustrated TA Navarre Hiton has an opposing view, "It's very unfair to judge someone on their capabilities and not on their looks. I work twice as hard as most women in my class at brushing my hair to give it that soft, natural look, and to only get asked out by students who want better grades is insulting. Of course, it's nice to have that kind of petty power, but there comes a point when it should be ignored. Men need to base their sex life on their dashing good looks and not on their academic achievements."

Just anti-matter

Particle physicist Conrad Phelps, whose work on neutrons had good friend C V Bose walking the Planck is quite unperturbed by the idea of women. "I haven't really been faced with the problem of dating, the only thing I'm ever turned on by are the results from my particle accelerator. If you are brainy and obssessive, you aren't likely to be seeing anyone. Plus, if you're good at what you do, the money you make will be more important than your brains."

Psycho speak

Certified psychopath Hannibal Lecher says it's ultimately about how much flesh you can get off your victim. "Most averagely intelligent people are threatened by too much analysis and go to the gym to work out instead. Hence the real geniuses who never emerge from their labs tend to get less exercise and it can hamper the development of their triceps. Liposuction can help rid them of their puppy fat."

Geeks with greek god looks

Richard Feynman: author, physicist and former genius was once approached by Playgirl to pose nude for their centrefold. (His reply: "surely you're joking?")

Albert Einstein: Probably the world's most famous genius, was voted prom king in junior high.

Stephen Hawking: He may look like crap now, but this legendary thinker was incredibly cute as a baby.


In yet another demonstration of its sublime journalistic quality, The Times of India on Sunday features a review of Philip Roth's Everyman. It's a harmless enough review, pleasantly vapid, that tells you almost nothing about the book except that it's not, according to the reviewer, misogynistic (phew! what a relief - that's what I really wanted to know about the book).

The reviewer, however, makes one fatal mistake. Before he gets to the title of the book he's reviewing (Everyman) he happens to mention another Philip Roth book - The Dying Animal. Worse, he actually ends a paragraph on it.

This, of course, is enough to convince the folks at ToI that the review is actually a review of the Dying Animal, so that's what they print it as. Some kind soul even goes to the trouble of fishing out an image of the cover of The Dying Animal and putting it into the print edition of the paper. No one notices that that isn't actually the book being reviewed.

Oh, and this for a review which starts with the lines:

" At a time when so much English fiction from India is bloated and sloppy, with book editors leaving their blue pencils unsharpened, ... "

Ah, the irony.

P.S. This should be abundantly clear, but just in case - all 'facts' and people presented in the 'Geeks can be Gods too' article are entirely fictional. As I said, I was inspired by the DNA article.


Anonymous said...

you at your cynical best !

Alex said...

You got me on that Geeks can be Gods list, only when i thought again about Einstein as Prom King did i realise.. Great fun!

The Man Who Wasnt There said...

ha ha!!! you just love the TOI dont you?:P:P But seriously this gaffe of theirs must rank among their most idiotic..imagine getting the title of the book being reviewed wrong! or is it the editors@TOI are way too smart to actually go through the trash some of their articles are?
Now maybe they are more smarter than we are willingly to acknowledge...:|

And nice spoof of the 'enlightening' DNA article...the sad part is they get away with everything..wish we could sue them for misrepresenting facts...that should be fun.
sigh...our lawyers and laws are such a bore...thankfully atleast these tabloids make up for it.

Raindrop said...

Being the astute observer that I am, I noticed that 2*3*7 is equal to 42. (Yes, the girl can certainly multiply.)

It seems we both acknowledge this number's mystic qualities in our blogs, although mine's still under construction.

TOI rocks. They once tried to blame an earthquake on German crockery. It was those darn teutonic plates, they said.

ggop said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
ggop said...

Is it just me or do others think Feynman looked hot in his day? :)

And to the previous poster - does the 42 have anything to do with the Hitchhiker's guide?


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Raindrop said...

Feynman was definitely hot.

And yes, it does. Please don't mock it, it is my only religion in this world.

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