Sometimes you hear things that make you wish you had the power to purge memories. Maybe it's your lewd, blunt, and abrasive Uncle Harry talking about the build-up of smegma under his foreskin. Maybe it's your strange cousin Geninne, who won't shut up about the green fungus growing around her armpits. Maybe it's your over-the-top friend, who regularly reveals bare-all stories that soil your consciousness, like about the time he and his girlfriend fornicated in your bed... and on your couch... and on your desk.
You know the feeling that results from hearing these auditory indecencies: It's like you've been psychologically violated. Like you've been seeded, against your will, with a nauseating thought, a thought that's going to germinate within the nurturing and impressionable recesses of your brain.
Now, you might think that science would be above such vulgarity, but it's not. Science's most quintessential goal is the pursuit of knowledge, and that pursuit, as well as the knowledge it uncovers, can be supremely awkward. Studies abound that tell us things that we'd much rather not know, and that make us want to recoil and cry, "Geez, Science; way too much information!"
Without further ado, here are five of science's worst "TMI" offenders, expressed in the scientists' very own gauche writing:
5. Do Left and Right Armpits Smell Differently? Human Axillary Odor: Are There Side-Related Perceptual Differences?"
"The aim of the present study was to test whether odor samples from the4. Cockroaches in Your Colon. "Caught on camera: an unusual type of bug in the gut."
right and left axillae
provided by right- and left-handed men were
perceived differently by female raters. Participants were 38 males and
aged 19-35 years. Fresh odor samples (cotton pads
worn underarm for 24 h) were evaluated for attractiveness, intensity,
masculinity, with left and right samples being
presented as independent stimuli. A side-related difference emerged in
only (no difference in right-handers): The odor
from the axilla corresponding to the dominant side (left) was rated more
and more intense than the other side (right)."
"During screening colonoscopy, a cockroach was encountered in the
transverse colon of a 51-year-old woman with a history of
schizophrenia. It was <1 cm in size and had a green, aqueous
substance sticking to its legs. Despite extreme caution during
extraction, the cockroach disintegrated and was removed by using
suction. The patient denied any knowledge of accidental ingestion or
history of pica. The most plausible explanation was inadvertent intake
of the cockroach while the patient was consuming green gelatin shortly
before the procedure."
"A variety of tissues were observed besides skeletal muscle including
bone (n = 8), collagen (n = 8), blood vessels (n = 8), plant material (n
= 8), peripheral nerve (n = 7), adipose (n = 5), cartilage (n = 4), and
skin (n = 1)... In conclusion, hotdog ingredient labels are
misleading; most brands are more than 50% water by weight. The amount of
meat (skeletal muscle) in most brands comprised less than 10% of the
cross-sectional surface area. More expensive brands generally had more
meat. All hotdogs contained other tissue types (bone and cartilage) not
related to skeletal muscle; brain tissue was not present."
"This study explores the sexual experiences and sexual health of Roman
Catholic priests. The qualitative research design looked at priests'
responses to the question, "Please share one or more sexual experiences
in your lifetime..." The data
were analyzed by frequency of responses and percentages within each of
the seven categories. The results indicate the need for early
intervention and education during seminary, ongoing education after
ordination, and psychotherapy support for priests."
"The purpose of this paper is to discuss the significance of the prison
scenario and its various permutations in the texts of American
commercial pornographic video. The paper will identify the prison as a
highly eroticised all male environment, an arena where the
active/passive dichotomy of gay pornography is staged and re-staged... Prison scenarios
take many shapes in gay pornography such as the American penitentiary,
the military brig, and the fantasised dungeon of the leatherman. I see
these scenarios as performing an important function within gay porn by
offering idealised spaces for the acts of pornography: voyeurism,
narcissistic display and active/ passive role-play."