BRAIN AND BRAWN by Harry McAvinchey



There’s something completely mad and unprecedented going on . You may or may not remember science fiction stories  and comics where it was proposed that at some future time , given their evolutionary development already in such a relatively short span of time, that human beings would eventually, gradually grow ever bigger brains and that in some far flung future of hover-cars and  overhead spaceways,  we would all have developed  huge dome-like heads …usually hairless and shiny as a lightbulb. Inside our skulls, our huge brains would telepathically guide us through our living days . Life would also be extended to several centuries instead of our previous, three score and ten.Life would possibly be sustained indefinitely. No one would ever want to die.

The problem of our huge heads entering the world through the birth canal would be surmounted by humans being bred in protein tanks or somesuch sci -fi gubbins. No one asked how we’d get our jumpers on over that huge- domed  head but I suppose we could all be zipped into some kind of  coverall overalls.Maybe we’d all be naked  anyway.We’d not be too worried about all that physical stuff.  Bodies would be an after-thought, in any case ,as the body would be allowed to atrophy and wither and possibly be assisted by some kind of futuristic machinery anyway. We ‘d all be visionary ,robotic “million -dollar men” by then …part animal and part machine.

Somehow , though, within a generation all of that  “future thinking” has been turned on its head . Instead of the brains growing bigger, what has happened is that the bodies are swelling to mammoth proportions.Apparently obesity is rampant in society now and it’s a possibility that the brains are actually shrinking and we humans are working really hard at getting even more stupid..One result of this has been the widening of seats in aircrafts to accommodate the huge resulting backsides of the passengers . More importantly though is the necessary fact of having to enlarge seating in  all public transport . As I write, a quarter  of adults in Norneverland  and the UK are clinically obese . That is ,one person in four ,is suddenly , within a generation, a “special” case. The kind of thing that was only seen in American films is now commonplace.

Ambulances are now being tweaked  ,in production ,to carry this additional weight.Patients weighing up to fifty stone require reinforced stretchers, specialist lifting hoists and wider doors . This is fast  becoming the norm.. In one particular case a fire-engine team was also required to remove an upstairs window from a property to allow an overweight patient to be hoisted to the ground. Needless to say, such a person would have been as helpless as a baby had there been a fire.

Of course the bottom line is the increased financial spend for all of this additional weight . There’s probably extra fuel involved and specialist treatment too.

So instead of the shiny futuristic world  we appear to be moving in a different direction entirely. Will we need ambulances as big as  articulated lorries, thirty years  from now .? Will the hospitals be as big as aeroplane  loading bays? Will human beings continue to expand and become as big as elephants?

Instead of our brains growing and expanding in brainpower, are we all becoming so silly  and lacking in common gumption that we can’t  figure out what is causing all of this?

One Response to BRAIN AND BRAWN by Harry McAvinchey

  1. Sherdy January 30, 2015 at 4:11 pm #

    When I was young I caddied at a golf club and got to know a man called Solly who had worked at Bletchley Park on the Enigma code breaker.
    He had a brilliant intellect, but didn’t talk down to a youngster like me, and maybe that’s partly why I remember him so well.
    But I recall in detail his reasoning for the brain v brawn argument, and it was all down to your vascular system and the blood flow around the body.
    If the arteries to your brain were good then the flow of blood in that direction helped your grey matter, but it was to the detriment of your physique as the liquid was rationed.
    Conversely if the arteries to your torso were good, then your physique would improve, but at the expense of the grey matter.
    So well endowed females (who were inclined to be blonde, naturally or otherwise) became unkindly known as ‘dumb blondes’ and muscular men were similarly criticised.