Adventures in Ethics and Science

One of the best things about Fridays on my campus is that hardly anyone is around. Not only does this make parking less of a headache, and interruption mid-task less probable, but it means that there’s even less pressure to dress in a manner that asserts, “I am a responsible adult!”

I mean, I am a responsible adult, but must I prove it by wearing a suit?

I’m on a campus committee that meets every few weeks, on Fridays. This means that the other committee members are also likely to dress as if it were a Friday — in jeans and T-shirts. Even dressed like graduate students, we get the job done.

So, I’m choosing clothes this morning and this is the T-shirt at the top of the stack:


It’s a wee bit smart-alecky for work, but this committee has shown itself quite committed to getting down to business in the presence of smart-alecky T-shirts.

But then it occurs to me that one of the members of the committee is the campus veterinarian. And I’m dying to know what her guess would be as far as important issues in the chicken regions indicated by the arrow.

I’ll report back with my findings on this matter later.

(The shirt was purchased from One Horse Shy, just in case you’ve decided you need one for yourself.)


  1. #1 Donalbain
    August 24, 2007

    OK.. I am officially dumb. Could you explain what the shirt is saying?

  2. #2 Janet D. Stemwedel
    August 24, 2007

    It’s not that you’re dumb. It’s simply that you’re not twelve.

    The standard operating procedure (for the non-T-shirt-enabled gag), is to say, “Guess what?” When your quarry replies, “What?”, you shout, “CHICKEN BUTT!”

    Really, you probably would have been happier not knowing that.

  3. #3 Donalbain
    August 24, 2007

    I can happily say, that until I read the blog of a professional philosopher I had NEVER heard of anyone saying that! Now I owe my friend a beer because philosophy HAS taught me something. Bah!

  4. #4 PhysioProf
    August 24, 2007

    I have been seeing an ad for that t-shirt on icanhascheezbuger and I couldn’t figure out what it meant either. Thank you for shedding light on that.

    Life is too short to not wear comfortable clothes.

  5. #5 Janet D. Stemwedel
    August 24, 2007

    I totally should have made up a story about the chicken on the shirt being the one that Socrates said he owed Asclepius as the hemlock was kicking in.

    Of course, that’s like issuing an open invitation to the Nietzscheans to expound on how Socrates blew it as far as the project of living a good life is concerned.

  6. #6 Ted
    August 24, 2007

    I mean, I am a responsible adult, but must I prove it by wearing a suit?

    How else would we know? (With those dressing habits, are you sure you’re not a Millenial?)

  7. #7 JM
    August 24, 2007

    I’m twelve! I’m twelve! I thought it was hilarious. In fact, I almost bought it for myself a few months ago.

  8. #8 dogscratcher
    August 24, 2007

    I always thought the phrase was used by the person getting asked, “Guess what?” An iron-clad rhetorical parry against anyone with the annoying habit of asking, “Hey, guess what?”

  9. #9 SteveG
    August 24, 2007

    I mean, I am a responsible adult, but must I prove it by wearing a suit?

    As a representative of philosopher’s union local 314, may I remind you that the wearing of suits for occasions other than weddings, funerals, the Eastern APA, or Halloween requires a signed waiver…unless, of course, you satisfy the Birkenstock exception.

  10. #10 John Koh
    August 27, 2007

    did i actually see coffee stains on that shirt, or are my eyes deceiving me?

  11. #11 Super Sally
    August 27, 2007

    [John, thanks for saying it. I saw ’em too, but a mother should only carp so much.]

  12. #12 Janet D. Stemwedel
    August 27, 2007

    No coffee stains (yet) — that’s moisture from the wet hair I combed out after putting the shirt on.

    Thanks for trusting my skills in maneuvering coffee to my mouth, Mother.

  13. #13 ctenotrish, FCD
    August 28, 2007

    Mother comment, HILARIOUS!!! Sounds like my Mom (whom I dearly love!) and me . . . .

  14. #14 Uncle Fishy
    August 28, 2007

    I wonder what the intersection of Dr. Freeride readers and icanhascheezbuger is? I thought it was just me.

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