Jewish World Review August 25, 2006 / 1 Elul, 5766
Pregnant With Humor
By Gene Weingarten
http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | This just in:
Dr. Shevach Friedler of Assaf Harofeh Medical Center in Israel last week presented findings at a medical conference in Prague suggesting that efforts to impregnate a woman artificially are considerably more successful if she is amused. Friedler cited an experiment at his fertility clinic, in which patients who were entertained by a clown during their procedure were substantially more likely to become pregnant than those who were not entertained by the clown.
My first thought, of course, was: This explains my two children!
But then I realized it explains a lot more. It explains in plain, irrefutable, Darwinian terms why men are, by and large, buffoons. It's not our fault! It is a result of natural selection. Women who wish to most efficiently perpetuate the species are going to seek out clowns.
I decided to put this thesis to a rigorous scientific test. Consider the results of my research, and judge for yourself:
Man | Buffoon Factor | Number of Children Sired
George Washington | Zero | None
Dan Quayle | Medium high | 3
Donald Trump | Off the charts | 5 (that we know of)
So, I think my point has been scientifically established. My next question, naturally, was, "What's in it for me?" If I were a scientist, I could write a treatise on the confluence of high fertility and jerko male humor I'd call it "On the Origin of Feces," or something. But I have no science cred, so I needed some other angle. Then it hit me, like a rhubarb pie in the face. This could be a moneymaking opportunity.
I had a proposal, but I needed to consult with a doctor who specializes in infertility and in vitro fertilization. There were dozens of them in the Washington area. I picked out the one I wanted on the basis of his name, but I was a little worried about the appropriateness of my choice. I sought another opinion.
Me: Is there something funny about a fertility specialist named "Dr. Frankfurter"?
My wife: No.
My wife: Really.
Me: Well, uh, wait . . . Would it be funny to an extremely immature person?
My wife: Yes.
There you go! My theory is working already! I had my doctor, my choice was asinine, but it's not my fault!
I called Dr. David Frankfurter of the fertility center at George Washington University Hospital, and I read him the report out of Israel.
Me: I am a pretty amusing guy. I was just wondering if your practice might consider hiring me on a freelance basis to entertain women undergoing fertility treatments.
Dr. Frankfurter: You know, this is a difficult time for most couples.
Me: I know. I could help!
Dr. Frankfurter: It's a rather intimate environment. From a relaxation standpoint, there probably is room for some humorous intervention, but, as far as a stand-up comic, on-site, I don't think so. Most patients would find it inappropriate.
Me: But, see, I would do appropriate jokes. They'd be pregnancy-themed. For example, why did the pregnant woman cross the road?
Dr. Frankfurter: To get a baby?
Me: No, to get a yummy ice cream, anchovy and sausage milkshake on the other side!
Me: Okay, I've got another one. Why is pregnancy like me getting a pedicure?
Dr. Frankfurter: Why?
Me: Because they both involve my toesies!
Me: My . . . toesies! Mitosis, see?
Dr. Frankfurter: Yes, I got it. Very cute.
Me: What do you think?
Dr. Frankfurter: I'm afraid it's not going to work.
I hung up, disappointed. But, just a few seconds later, Dr. Frankfurter called back. "I have to say, you've sparked an area of interest," he said. "It may not be a bad idea to get people to laugh."
Initially, that made me feel better. But then I started to feel like Alfred Russel Wallace. Never heard of him? That's the point. He was the guy who came up with a theory of evolution by natural selection, right around the same time Charles Darwin did. But Darwin got all the credit, because Darwin published first.
Just you watch Doc Frankfurter's gonna run with this thing but he's gonna hire some other clown.
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Gene Weingarten writes the Below the Beltway humor column for The Washington Post. To comment, please click here.
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