Evolution, Cuisine and Romance

Greg Is Doing a Cafe Scientifique…

“Evolution, Cuisine and Romance”


This Tuesday at the Bryant-Lake Bowl

February 19, 7 p.m.

The Bell Museum Blurb says:

Were the opposable thumb, an upright stance and a large brain were the most important evolutionary events in human history? According to Anthropologist Greg Laden, these and other traits are only the byproducts of the truly important evolutionary transitions for our species: the rise of romance and the evolution of cuisine. Join Laden for a discussion about the co-evolution of diet, sexual strategies, and society during the last five million years.


  1. #1 cope
    February 18, 2008

    Wow, what a concept..potato + fire = hot robosex.

    But seriously, I wish I could attend. I would throw in a piece of advice I give my male high school science students: learn to cook because the ladies love a man who knows his way around the kitchen. Then, I would go roll a few frames.

    Sounds like a great evening.

  2. #2 Bob
    February 18, 2008

    I added a bit to that great piece of advice – if there are no ladies to impress, at least you eat well (and generally cheaper and healthier.)

  3. #3 Greg Laden
    February 18, 2008

    Hot robosex? Wow, I’d love to show you some inkblots!

    That is a tasteful drawing of a human female body. It represents the dual mysteries of gender similarity in humans (males and females are not very different compared to many other species) and the apparent fact that most of the sex differences are in derived female traits rather than derived male traits. This is virtually unique among mammals.

    Robosex is a TOTALLY DIFFERENT topic. We’ll cover that next week….

  4. #4 the real Bukowski
    February 18, 2008

    the only retort a thinking man has for the often spoke metaphor of “unnecessary men” is indeed ” Robo Women render real women obsolete, use fewer resources, fuel less war, and generally cost less in the long run…”, but Bukowski said it best ” two pounds of warm hamburger, a thin necked vase, and some baby oil….”

  5. #5 Betsy
    February 19, 2008

    See you there!

  6. #6 Greg Laden
    February 19, 2008

    Betsy: Just tell them who you are at the door, you’ll get right past the rope line. (After all, you are IN the talk…)

  7. #7 Lorax
    February 19, 2008

    Sadly, Ill have to miss it. I assume from the figure you’ll be telling us the best to impress women is to take them to McDonald’s or Burger King for an order of super-sized fries. If not, hopefully one of the attendees will summarize it for me. Have fun!

  8. #8 Greg Laden
    February 19, 2008

    Oh, man, did you have to go and tell everybody!?!?

  9. #9 BJN
    February 19, 2008

    How to draw “Sparkette” is tasteful? That’s a pose reserved for “Hot Rod” cover photos or James Bond babes. The spud looks pretty hot too. Fries + fires = Serif

  10. #10 Stephanie Z
    February 19, 2008

    I’m thoroughly tempted to skip out on my meeting tonight to see this. However, there will be only three of us. I suspect my absence would be noted.

  11. #11 Son of Priam
    February 19, 2008

    This implies that you think women are baked potatoes. Poor Amanda.

  12. #12 Tony Jeremiah
    February 19, 2008

    This may be of interest…

    ‘G.F. Miller, in his 1993 doctoral dissertation, made the startling claim that human creativity (and much of what we consider “human intelligence”) evolved as a “protean courtship device”…Miller suggested that our ancestors happened to favor mates who were more psychologically entertaining than average, rather than just those who had brightly colored hair or unusual size, perhaps because tactical unpredictability and creativity were especially important in competition for survival among socially intelligent hominids.’ (Freyd, 1994, p.123)


    Freyd, J.J. (1994). Circling creativity. Psychological Science, 5, 33-37.

  13. #13 Son of Priam
    February 20, 2008

    Tony, indeed, this is Geoff Miller’s specialty — the role of intelligence, creativity, humor, and romance in mate (and quite likely natural) selection.

    Most of his publications are available at his website:


  14. #14 Son of Priam
    February 20, 2008

    Greg, shouldn’t you credit or acknowledge Roberto Campus for the sketch of Wonder Woman? Especially since you removed the credit from the lower left corner of the image?