Pharyngula

The advantages of being a biologist

A reader sent me this photo of a lovely monument in Antwerp, and I just had to post it. You see, when you’re a biologist, it’s not just all about the squid and the barnacles, there’s also all the hot babes.

i-eeaea16a3c17de7b5302e208785b88ad-Antwerp -Darwin.jpeg

The voluptuous young lady is, apparently, the personification of Nature. I just knew she was gorgeous, but I understand she also has a cruel streak.

To be fair, if anyone has a picture of, say, a Barbara McClintock monument with a nude Adonis snuggling up to her, I’ll post that, too. Both sexes are equally attractive in this field, you know.

Comments

  1. #1 Levi in NY
    December 29, 2008

    I would give my left arm to be the Darwin on that statue. Oh wait…

  2. #2 Sastra
    December 29, 2008

    The sculptor also has a cruel streak. The poor naked biologist apparently has no nether regions. This surely puts a crimp in his available options, biology-wise.

    By the way, it looks like Darwin. Is it?

  3. #3 PZ Myers
    December 29, 2008

    Yeah, look at the name on the plinth.

  4. #4 Glen Davidson
    December 29, 2008

    Yeah, but she gave birth to Darwin, so it’s kind of creepy.

    If I were in Darwin’s place, I’d be a creationist.

    Glen D
    http://tinyurl.com/6mb592

  5. #5 llewelly
    December 29, 2008

    If I were in Darwin’s place, I’d be a creationist.

    Darwin tried to be a creationist, but the evidence was too much for him. Drove him to evolution and agnosticism.

  6. #6 RamblinDude
    December 29, 2008

    The sculptor also has a cruel streak. The poor naked biologist apparently has no nether regions.

    Ahem… Dude, that leg-length column that appears to support him. . . .

  7. #7 RamblinDude
    December 29, 2008

    Ah, “Dudette.”

    Pardon.

  8. #8 Marc Abian
    December 29, 2008

    Medusa’s been perving again I see…

  9. #9 The Science Pundit
    December 29, 2008

    Yeah, but she gave birth to Darwin, so it’s kind of creepy.

    Yeah! It’s downright unnatural! … I mean …
    Never mind.

  10. #10 TSC
    December 29, 2008

    But where’s the Italian sports car?

  11. #11 Christie
    December 29, 2008

    Is it weird if I say I wish I was mother nature cuddling up to Darwin?

  12. #12 Rick O.
    December 29, 2008

    I can’t remember the last time I heard someone use the word “plinth”.

  13. #13 Matt Heath
    December 29, 2008

    semi O/T: Anyone feel like going and yelling at Guardian columnists for writing shitty pieces with “New Atheist” in the title. New Atheism has five distinct doctrines by squalid religion-sympathetic atheist Andrew Brown and Darwin shouldn’t be hijacked by New Atheists – he is an ethical inspiration by squalid liberal Christian (I think) Madeleine Bunting.

    Incidentally what is the name for ignorant screeds from people who are firmly middle of the road? “Moonnuttery”, “Wingbattery”?

  14. #14 MarkusR
    December 29, 2008

    Only 5? I’m disappointed. Are we not a herd of cats anymore?

  15. #15 'Tis Himself
    December 29, 2008

    It gets cold in Antwerp during the winter. That poor woman, with only a scarf on one upper thigh, must be one giant goose pimple right about now.

  16. #16 Rey Fox
    December 29, 2008

    I’m imagining Ben Stein jealously staring at that statue now.

  17. #17 Marc Abian
    December 29, 2008

    Only 4/5? That’s bull. I’m as new and as atheist as it gets.

  18. #18 Rey Fox
    December 29, 2008

    “Incidentally what is the name for ignorant screeds from people who are firmly middle of the road? “Moonnuttery”, “Wingbattery”? ”

    Highhorsery? Fencesittery? Mushheadery? Deadarmadillery?

  19. #19 anon
    December 29, 2008

    I count six bullets in the Andrew Brown article.

  20. #20 JoeB
    December 29, 2008

    Concernedtrollery? OhSoConcernedTrollery?

  21. #21 8teist
    December 29, 2008

    How come Darwin gets the hot chicks?

  22. #22 Turing E.
    December 29, 2008

    So, you’re admitting that you’re attracted to men? Ha! I was sure you were going to hell, but now you’re going to hell TWICE!

  23. #23 katchaya
    December 29, 2008

    For a bunch of think outside the box scientists you are all so lacking imagination.First PZ, why can we only have heterosexually paired statuary ??? As to the missing parts of the male statue in question, while that is sad for him, but again, why is sexuality just defined by gonads!
    Just bitchin’

  24. #24 Matt Heath
    December 29, 2008

    Concernedtrollery? OhSoConcernedTrollery?

    To paraphrase the worst militant centrist of our times, “it’s worse than that; [they] mean it”.

  25. #25 Jake
    December 29, 2008

    No left arm, but wherever he’s got his right hand is making her smile.

  26. #26 Sam
    December 29, 2008

    “To be fair, if anyone has a picture of, say, a Barbara McClintock monument with a nude Adonis snuggling up to her, I’ll post that, too.”

    Perhaps you would. But given the very slim likelihood that a monument would ever be raised to a woman – let alone a monument to an intelligent woman with a nude Adonis snuggling up to her – your promise is an empty one.

    So. Thanks for nothing.

  27. #28 Sam
    December 29, 2008

    Sorry for the double post but…

    By the way, have you considered changing you title to “The Advantages of Being a Male, Heterosexual Biologist?” Atheists don’t have to completely progressive but we should strive to be a little more progressive than your average fundie.

  28. #29 DaveH
    December 29, 2008

    Matt Heath@13

    Reading the Madeleine Bunting article this morning, I got precisely as far as “On the Origin of the Species”

  29. #30 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 29, 2008

    By the way, have you considered changing you title to “The Advantages of Being a Male, Heterosexual Biologist?” Atheists don’t have to completely progressive but we should strive to be a little more progressive than your average fundie.

    should we include every other descriptor of a person as well?

  30. #31 poco dio
    December 29, 2008

    is that Antwerp, New Hampshire?

    or Antwerp, Texas?

  31. #32 John Morales
    December 29, 2008

    Sam @26, does a statue count as a monument?

  32. #33 Adrian T
    December 29, 2008

    “het Huldemonument Charles Darwin” is at the Antwerp Zoo, by the way. Cool stuff.

  33. #34 Matt Heath
    December 29, 2008

    But given the very slim likelihood that a monument would ever be raised to a woman

    You could legitimately say that there are too few but “unlikely [one] would ever be raised”? Emmeline Pankhurst in Parliament Square? Queen Victorias spotted around the Commonwealth? About a squillion of Jesus’ mother?

  34. #35 Cath the Canberra Cook
    December 29, 2008

    As I understand it, Darwin was het, and so was Barbara McClintock. So she should have her Adonis. Rick, are you up for a spot more photoshopping?

    I have found a Marie Curie statue, but no luck yet with biologists.

  35. #36 Brian X
    December 29, 2008

    I just want to know one thing about Ms. Nature… grad student or PhD?

  36. #37 Paul
    December 29, 2008

    Yay this is in the Antwerp Zoo, the original Antwerp (Where I’m from, yay) in Belgium (that’s in Europe).
    I only vaguely remember that statue being there, so i’m urgently going to use my year-pass for the Zoo and check it out once more :)
    If i get there before this thread ends up on page 4 of this blog, i’ll post some more pictures.

    Great blog PZ, it keeps me reading on a daily basis!

  37. #38 JupiterPluvius
    December 29, 2008

    That Marie Curie statue is adorable. She got a whole body, unlike the “Futurama”-style Darwin here, to boot!

    I love the idea that what a statue of Darwin’s head needs most of all is a random naked chick. (And by “love” here, I mean “love to laugh at.”)

  38. #39 Pliny the Elder
    December 29, 2008

    Sam has a decent point. What’s with all the attacking?

  39. #40 Zeno
    December 29, 2008

    Feynman once did a drawing that he intended as a study in light and shadow. He used a beautiful nude model and a bright light source. He was inspired to title the finished work “Madame Curie observing the radiations from radium.” At a showing of his art, Feynman was approached by a local art patron:

    “Tell me, Professor Feynman, do you draw from photographs or from models?”

    “I always draw directly from a posed model.”

    “Well, how did you get Madame Curie to pose for you?”

    The art lover was in dead earnest.

  40. #41 Bacopa
    December 29, 2008

    How about Lynn Margulis? Rosalind Franklin? Franklin was close to the double helix, but lacked the support to get there. Margulis proposed the symbiosis origin of eukaryotes, which is now largely accepted today.

  41. #42 Mark
    December 29, 2008

    PZ, looks like you’re not the only one with a Trophy Wife. Looks like Chuck’s got quite the trophy himself.

  42. #43 Alex
    December 30, 2008

    Rick, #27: That looks shopped. I can tell from some of the pixels and from seeing quite a few shops in my time.

  43. #44 Quiet_Desperation
    December 30, 2008

    Them’s some mighty hips.

  44. #45 scooter
    December 30, 2008

    Am I the only representative of male happy monkey here?

    The first thing I look at in a naked woman is the crotch.

    There are leg men, breast men, ass guys. All of these things are great, but I’m an old fashioned Happy Monkey vagina guy.

    I love vaginas, and…. well

    don’t tell anybody, but I have a pet name for vaginas

    shhhh

    I call them pussies [/whisper]

    Next to brains, personality, charm, wit, eloquence, courage, intelligence, talent, street smarts, savvy and articulation, I love women’s pussies.

    Much is spoken about the variety of buxom, voluptuous, svelt, slender, perky in a woman, but for me, it’s the pussy, I’m a pussy freak.

    I got married late in life and had the honor of servicing many a pussy.

    They are all different in aroma, innie, outie, and the clit, SUCK IT!! ouch TEASE IT, not so hard, every woman is a study and a sexual learning experience, some like it deep, some like it fast, some like it grindy, but the real essence of a sexual relationship is the savoring and servicing of the pussy.

    It’s not simple stuff like penis, up and down up and down, different speeds it cums.

    The secret garden is a mystery to be explored, and it doesn’t hurt to ask questions.

    The subject of the vagina, giver of happy monkeys, would seem non-sequitor to the post.

    But when seeing any naked female my eyes go right to the crotch. Because I am a pussy guy, lover of pouting flowers

    Has anyone noticed that Darwin’s girlfriend has a rather small uncircumcised penis that hangs to her right?

    just asking

    I

  45. #46 scooter
    December 30, 2008

    I’m thinking this is Pete Rooke wearing man boobs ala Black Adder.

  46. #47 Nerd of Redhead
    December 30, 2008

    PZ, looks like you’re not the only one with a Trophy Wife. Looks like Chuck’s got quite the trophy himself.

    Treating the wife like she’s a trophy wive makes her think you are the trophy husband.

  47. #48 David Marjanovi?, OM
    December 30, 2008

    Margulis proposed the symbiosis origin of eukaryotes, which is now largely accepted today.

    Well, yes, but while she was the one who pushed it the most and thus contributed much to getting it accepted, she wasn’t the first to get the idea, and the most convincing (genetic) evidence was only discovered after she had largely moved on to other topics.

  48. #49 jay
    December 31, 2008

    Both sexes are equally attractive in this field, you know.

    Not to pontificate but… but one thing we can gather from evolution is that the gender sexual strategies are a result of natural selection (reproductive success). Scarcity is a factor in attraction, and a fertile healthy female is, in evolutionary terms, the scarce and valuable part of the cycle. Sperm with adequate-to-good DNA is available in generous amounts (cheap in evolutionary terms), even from males who are a bit old in the tooth (actually their survival to that age may suggest they are a good choice). Hence healthy young women with brilliant but aging biologists ;)

    With that much asymmetry in the reproductive process, we should not all be surprised at comparable asymmetry in what each gender is looking for.

  49. #50 hery
    January 25, 2010

    Queen Victorias spotted around the Commonwealth.

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