Archive for the 'History' Category

Sunday, August 7th, 2011

Weed, Heroin, Cocaine – Medical Ads Used To Be Really Cool

Ads for drugs today are kind of silly. Ads for erectile dysfunction, for example, are weird geological changes happening in real time that end up with a couple sitting in bathtubs in a forest somewhere, instead of being about what men really care about – banging their wives when they couldn’t do so before.

And other products have 5 seconds of benefit followed by paragraphs of disclaimers about side effects ending with “see our ad in GOLF magazine”.

Golf magazine must be read solely by really, really ill people.

It wasn’t always like that. Ads used to be ridiculous exaggerations and downright funny. Got cocaine and you will sell it to kids? Let people know!

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

Bloodletting and Birthdays – Astrology and Ancient Kooky Medicine

Bloodletting used to be a nice, medical cure-all if you just didn’t know what was causing the problem. Think of it like dark matter, except for physicians rather than physicists.

And astrology used to gain some acceptance from people who confused it with astronomy because, you know, the stars were important – they must be, they are way up in the sky – so why wouldn’t the alignment of stars a few thousand light years away determine your personality?

What do you get when you combine them both? Medical hilarity in the ancient world.


Saturday, March 14th, 2009

Facts And Fantasy About Saint Patrick’s Day

If you’re a student of culture, a number of things have likely piqued your curiosity; like why so many modern people get drunk about ancient religous stuff.   Take Mardi Gras, for example – go to any Mardi Gras celebration and 98% of people there will be Protestants, so they haven’t fasted for Lent in over 400 years, and 85% won’t know why they are getting drunk at all, but they still act like they are getting ready to starve for 40 days – if by starving we mean not having yards of beer for 11 straight hours.  

It’s a real mystery but at least it gets people thinking about religion and its relationship to Brazilian strippers.

A few weeks later, give or take, we have St. Patrick’s day, a celebration of a guy who wanted to drive out pagan head dresses, hot wiccan chicks and drunken bacchanalia; really, everything that was great about the Celts.  Who in their right mind wants to celebrate that?