James Griffin 's Opinion

James Griffin is a columnist for Canvas magazine.

James Griffin: Accident in creation?

Photo / Thinkstock
Photo / Thinkstock

Whether you believe in Creation or evolution or intelligent design or not-so-intelligent design or whatever, the male scrotum surely has to be a mistake in all of them. To take the pouch that holds the seed of future generations and to leave it hanging outside the body, vulnerable to all manner of assault, just seems like a very bad choice in any doctrine.

Aesthetically, the scrotum even looks like a mistake; a bit that someone on the evolutionary production line was meant to tuck away to make the body look neater and more streamlined, but they fell asleep at the quality-control switch and by the time the error was noticed it was too late because the product was out in the marketplace.

In Creationary terms you'd have to hope that someone had some explaining to do on whichever day that particular part of the human anatomy was not very intelligently designed: "Hang on, what's that thing there? The wrinkly thing down there, between the legs." "Yeah, um, we were kinda hoping you wouldn't notice that, sir. That's the scrotum."

"But the male specs call for the scrotum to be nestled safely up inside the body, just behind the peeing and insemination device. It looks terrible there. And uncomfortable.

Won't it get crushed between the thighs, hanging down like that?" "Sorry. Bit of a cock-up, as it were. By the time we noticed the error it was too late to correct it, because the deadline day you set for the Adam model to be rolled out was just about on us. We tried to dress it up a bit in what time we had by whacking a few hairs on it, but looking at it again now we may have actually made things worse. Sorry again, sir." "Don't apologise to me. Apologise to the countless generations of males who will have to live with the fact their family jewels are just dangling there, vulnerable to all manner of assault. Man, when some poor bastard gets hit square on that thing with a fast-moving object or a knee, the pain is going to be eye-watering."

Here and now, countless generations later, there are countless men who can indeed testify to the special sort of eye-watering pain that comes with a blow to that region. It is a pain like no other pain in existence; a pain that rises from the exposed scrotum, into the pit of the stomach, then radiates through every atom of the body. It is an unnatural pain that undoubtedly confirms the belief this is a design flaw.

The reason for the low-hanging vulnerability of the plums of the human male, we are scientifically informed, is because sperm needs to be kept at a temperature slightly lower than the human body in order for the little swimmers to do their thing.

If this preposterous reasoning is, in fact, the truth, then why do the balls retract into the under-carriage the millisecond they come into contact with cold water? Surely, if you believe the scientific reasoning, they should be flopping about enjoying their cool, refreshing bath. But no, they do not, they seek sanctuary in their rightful place, where no harm can come to them.

Even if this temperature differential thing is actually correct, would it not have been a wiser evolutionary path for humans to evolve sperm that can handle the heat and still do their job, so that the male body can then tuck their sperm launching pads safely up inside, away from harm? Stupid evolution.

[NB: there is probably a discussion to be had about the effects of Global Warming on levels of scrotal dangliness, and whether the human tackle is ascending or descending as the polar ice-caps shrink and ocean levels rise, but I'm not sure this is the appropriate forum for that discussion. Actually I'm not sure there is an appropriate forum for that discussion.]

Maybe the reason men develop beer-bellies is as a defence mechanism; a belated attempt by mankind to protect the scrotum, the thing that makes men the kind they are, by growing a protective fat shield that will ideally fold itself over. Unfortunately the growing of the protective fat shield and the amounts of beer and food needed to grow and sustain it, opens a whole other can of worms in terms of other health issues that rather nullify its usefulness. Protecting the future at the cost of a heart attack in the near future seems like a lose/lose evolutionary situation.

Balls or balls-up? This is a question that has troubled few, until now. Too much of a touchy subject, maybe? Certainly a sensitive one. Let the dialogue begin, otherwise the answer will forever be blowing in the wind.

- NZ Herald

James Griffin

James Griffin is a columnist for Canvas magazine.

© Copyright 2014, APN New Zealand Limited

Assembled by: (static) on red akl_a5 at 17 Sep 2014 13:55:25 Processing Time: 247ms