Below the Beltway / Entertainment

The Pinocchio Factor: And You Thought Genes Nose Was Big Already

WASHINGTON -- The only truth to so far emerge from the presidential campaign is that truth no longer really matters; the lies and exaggerations on both sides are breathtaking, but voters seem to have accepted it as just a dirty part of the show, like folding-chair attacks in pro wrestling.

If its OK for pols, why not for columnists?

You know how I occasionally take on feminist Gina Barreca and generally lose because Gina is smarter, funnier and better informed than I am? What if I was not hampered by the need to stick to the truth? I decided to call Gina to discuss the results of three studies that I completely made up.

Gene: Researchers in the Czech Republic subjected bonobo monkeys to stress under various scenarios, and found that the females were more likely to go to pieces -- i.e., act in a hysterical way that actually worsened the crisis. Male bonobos tended to make more rational decisions that ameliorated the cause of the stress.

Gina: Oh, please. Go to pieces is such a male term. That alone is showing the inherent male bias of the researchers.

Gene: (ruffling blank sheets of paper) I see here that the two researchers were named Klara and Hildegarde.

Gina: Crap. Well, Id still question the nature of going to pieces. Its very subjective.

Gene: Well, one of the stressors was a taxidermized crocodile. The male bonobos intelligently tried to seek higher ground. The females just shrieked at it.

Gina: Believe me, every woman on Earth has met that taxidermized crocodile. He is at every party and lurking behind every fifth personal ad. If you seek higher ground, hell just look up your skirt. Shrieking is usually more effective.

Gene: The second stressor was that all the fruit in the habitat was replaced overnight with plastic fruit. The males went foraging for new food sources. The females destroyed the plastic food. And they castigated the males, for some reason.

...continued

Copyright 2012 Washington Post Writers Group



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