Yesterday the New York Times science section asked, "What is vitamin K good for, and where can it be found?"
As if reading their minds, on the same day the Washington Post style section wrote, "Ketamine, sweet ketamine, answer to our glutamatergic dreams."
Let me elaborate. What is K good for? A. Chillaxing / Seeing God (depending on dosage.) B. Anesthetizing animals, children, and the elderly. (It's very safe because it doesn't depress respiration. It's not used more widely because of occasional side effects; see above.) C. Here's the news: Treating depression.
A paper published in the August issue of Archives of General Psychiatry shows that administering sub-psychedelic amounts of ketamine can have antidepressant effects that begin within two hours and last two weeks. Wickid.
At first I didn't notice that paper when the August Archives came across my desk. Either because it was unremarkably titled "A randomized trial of an N-methyl-D-aspartate antagonist in treatment-resistant major depression" instead of "Injecting fucking special K makes you trip balls AND totally puts you on cloud nine." Or because we got Oprah Magazine that day. (My job requires that I cast a wide eye on news and trends. Have you seen Oprah's new hair? OMG.)
Once I read the study I spotted a mighty confusing line though: "Adverse effects [included]... perceptual disturbances... euphoria... and increased libido." Reminded me of that old Ali G segment where he asks a narcotics agent about hash:
Ali G: And what is its effects? Guy: You can go paranoid, which means you think people or things are coming at you. It makes your heart race. Your blood pressure can go low, so you can feel a bit woozy sometimes. It’s got a lot of medical effects on the body. Ali G: And is there any negative effects?
Bottom line: I'm not sure I'm getting my biweekly recommended dosage of vitamin K. I can't wait for the chewable Flinstoner version to come out.
I'm tempted to let that just sit there, without comment.
But all you furries out there might waste countless hours searching the nets for the missing frames that would show this "gorping" action more explicitly.
Cool your jets (and put your dry cleaner on hold.) It's merely a depiction of a video shown to a set of two-year-old test subjects: Fig. 1 from a paper titled "Learning Words and Rules: Abstract Knowledge of Word Order in Early Sentence Comprehension" in the August issue of Psychological Science. Who knew grammar could be so kinky?
But seriously, if you want to find gorping, just ask Moby.
Update: My dear advice-giving friend Liz has now opined on the origin of the furry friend trend. More generally, she advocates:
I Would Vote for a president who runs on anti-meme. How does it work? It works on the same principle as a hybrid -- it stores up potential energy. Every time you stop yourself from creating a delightful and idiotic social trend, the energy gets stored in a battery. That battery is around eight pounds, and the presidential hopeful runs around with it, hitting people.
Unless you live in Topeka you're aware that Chuck Norris is no longer the hotness. It turns out that all those facts about him distributed on the webness were total falseness. A marketing ploy for tshirts. But for those of us left yearning for a new beacon of superlatives, I have found a replacement: Cormac McCarthy. Not much is known about this elusive Southwestern author of rugged, austere fiction. According to a 1994 article in The Atlantic,
Over the first twenty-five years of his life as a writer... remarkable rumors freely circulated. It was said that he had lived for a while under an oil derrick in West Texas; had at one time been a destitute and homeless person who roamed the back streets and cadged drinks in the sleazier bars of Knoxville, Tennessee; had been, and perhaps still was, a truckdriver and a ditchdigger; and, what is at least approximately true, had lived for long periods in cheap motel rooms where he subsisted on canned food warmed on hot plates.
Indeed, he was living in a motel when he learned of winning his MacArthur grant in 1981. He still writes on a manual typewriter and has only ever granted one interview. But through several factfinding missions I have unearthed some remarkable new information about this man. Notes are below.
•Cormac McCarthy drives an oil derrick around West Texas. It has a
bumper sticker that says, "My other car is East Texas." The bumper
sticker does not lie.
•Cormac McCarthy is a self-made billionaire. His cash cow is a line
of bumper stickers that say "My other car is East [state of
residence]." Those bumper stickers do lie. Except for the one he sold
to Chuck Norris, whose state of residence is Bumfuck.
•Cormac McCarthy's most well known book was originally titled All the Pretty Hearses.
•Cormac McCarthy is older, dirtier, and less legitimate than Russell Tyrone Jones (RIP).
•In his first NBA All-Star game, Cormac McCarthy messed around and got a quadruple triple.
•Cormac McCarthy enjoys pickup games of synchronized swimming.
•In Rock Paper Scissors, Cormac McCarthy has a lifetime winning percentage of 56%. That number is statistically significant.
•Cormac McCarthy is physically capable of mimicking the "chh chh"
sound of a bottle of Olivio Buttery Spray while simultaneously
pantomiming, in jest, the open-mouth-directed use of said condiment
dispenser. (He is in talks to replace Michael Winslow as Larvell Jones
in Police Academy 9: Hightower vs. Predator.)
•Sometimes men have morning wood. Fuck that. Cormac McCarthy had birth wood.
•Cormac McCarthy once built a helicopter out of a cocktail umbrella,
a rubber band, and MacGyver's testicles. The testicles were not
actually needed. They were just decoration.
•Cormac McCarthy doesn't give people roundhouse kicks to the face. Roundhouse kicks to the face give people Cormac McCarthy.
•Cormac McCarthy doesn't give people crabs. He practices safe sex religiously.
•Cormac McCarthy has his own record label. In fact, he has his own
record label maker that he uses to alphabetize his album collection,
which includes SEVERAL copies of Switched-On Bach and can only
be properly alphabetized using the subscript numeral option on the
label maker, a tricked-out model that served as the centerpiece for the
first episode of the short-running MTV:8 series Pimp Yo Mama's Office Supplies, starring Lil Bow Wow and some prick from the even shorter-running That 80's Show.
•Cormac McCarthy is so post-postmodern he can deconstruct blank parody.
In the book review section of Psychology Today we have a page called Road Test. A writer takes a self-help book out for a test drive and reports the results. Last month a man named Sheraton G. Munford sent us his book, Confirming Theories. The brief intro ends with: "please read with an open mind and give serious thought to the theories of Sheraton G. Munford." The book's not quite right for PT, so I decided to road test it for SJ!
Confirming Theories is a list of 35 theories, each about a page long, and each followed by a page with blank lines for answering three questions: "How was the research on the theory completed?" "What were the results of the research?" "Please explain why you do or do not support the theory." Munford lays out his theories and we get to test them for him! Awesome! Let's get to work.
What's that noise? A siren? Do y'all hear the Language Police about to bring the beatdown?
Okay, so, what's the deal with giving two titles to things and placing "or" in between them? Example: A photo labeled "Second attempt to clone mental disorder or How one philosophizes with a hammer." Now, I did write a whole post about how great that photo caption is, but it's great because what comes before "or" and what comes after work together. I have to translate "or" into "and" or a simple colon; otherwise, the synergy dissipates.
Read "or" literally and it's like, well what's the fucking title of your piece? Is it A or B? Let's look at the inverse scenario. You wouldn't pick a single title and then put two separate paintings on the wall and say "Um, 'Dancing Daisies' is this one or that one." You wouldn't publish two novels in the same volume with a big page that says "or" in between and a single title slapped on the cover.
So take a look at this article headline: "The End of Originality Or, why Michael Bay's The Island failed at the box office." Oh, I get to pick what the article is titled? Wheee!
It's like these titles are fucking choose your own adventures. So, yeah, screw the simple "or"; here are selected excerpts from the title of my next abstract expressionist painting: "...Skip To Title 34 for a More Wry Interpretation of This Piece... If You Are Currently Feeling Incensed by Life's Great Injustices You Might Like Something in a... Otherwise Jump to... Not Feeling Any of These Titles Yet? Try... Oh Screw It, Buy the Fucking Thing and Name It What the Hell You Want."
God, why do creative types have to ruin everything?