An article in the British magazine The Economist tells us about a scientific study done at Syracuse University in New York by Professor Scott Pitnick. Interestingly, researcher Pitnick was studying bats and the biological relationship between their testicles and their brains. ( Some readers are now asking, “Why?”)
Since many women have maintained for generations that men actually think with their, uhhh, testicles, the article had my attention. The premise of the research team is that a bat’s testicles would be larger in species where the females of that group were more promiscuous, and smaller when the females tended to limit their couplings.
The article went on to mention casually, as if we all knew a lot about such things, that:
“Greater promiscuity does, indeed, lead to bigger testes presumably because a male needs to make more sperm to have a fighting chance of fathering offspring, if those sperm are competing with a lot of other males.” This is fascinating since women are so often accused of ripping off those particular body parts, or “busting” them, as they say. Now we find out there is a legitimate scientific study that shows that we actually give men those things they love! More interesting, the naughtier we are, the bigger theirs get! It is only if we are prudish that they “shrink” to embarrassing miniatures.
Again from the article:
“Gorillas which discourage dalliances between other males and the females of their harems, have small testes. Chimpanzees, among whom females mate widely, have large ones.”
Then the addenda our curiosity has been waiting for:
“Human testes lie between these two extremes.”
This conjures a spectrum with King Kong on one end, J. Fred Muggs on the other, and your husband or boyfriend(s) -or both- somewhere in the middle.
The smallest bat testes were found among those whose females were monogamous.
Finally, the kicker:
“Brain size, by contrast…varied in the opposite direction.”
This means the bigger the testes, the smaller the brains. (Many women reading this column are now resting their case.)
This study is not likely to be nominated for a Nobel Prize, but it does give us something to ponder. The conclusion of the article said much more that anything I might add in summarizing the results of all this research referred to in the title as, “Bats and Balls”.
As the article ended, simply:
“…it is better to be virile and dim, than impotent and smart.”
But then again, a lot of us already knew that. Sleep tight King Kong: we now know you are much smarter than you look in those frontal nudity shots.
- ► 2008 (17)