Friday, November 28, 2014

Lord Monckton and the 20,000 Lays

Hold your noses as we consider the latest hateful comments made by Christopher Walter Monckton, 3rd Viscount Monckton of Brenchley, former advisor to Lady Thatcher (boo!), climate change denier (boo!), homophobe (boo!) and inventor of the Eternity puzzle (bo… hang on, what?).

We’ll come on to the Eternity puzzle later, because it’s incredible. First, let’s look and laugh at Chris’s article for WorldNet Daily earlier this week, in which the hereditary peer bravely tilts at the windmill of homosexuality and posits that gays are evil because of AIDS and sodomy and drugs and look he just doesn’t like it, OK? He also spends a lolsome paragraph fretting about what LGBTQ stands for and decides to call all non-straight people QWERTYs. Ziiiiing! That’ll show us!

Let it be noted that, as usual, Monckton’s beef is with gay men - not, say, lesbians. The locus for this particular fear in straight men is, as ever, the ol’ back door: the homophobic man does not fear or hate, or even consider the existence of, lesbians, because their sexual activities do not dangerously reframe male sexuality. Above all the homophobic straight man fears (and if you know your Sigmund you’ll dig that this means he is inexorably, spine-tinglingly allured by) the idea of being penetrated. This gleeful panic oozes from each of Moncko’s sentences, not least his hilarious bracket that begins: “just ask any proctologist”. Cheers mate, will do.

Never mind that the people performing the vast majority of all anal acts in the world are straight and that gay men are thrillingly able to dream up heaps more things to do with each other besides common-or-garden buggery: Christopher must be heard. He is the inventor of the Eternity puzzle, after all, and who here can say that he, she or ze (I don’t know what these QWERTYs will dream up next!) has earned such a platform for yelling at clouds?

The Eternity puzzle, Wikipedia tells us, is a tiling game that “consists of filling a large almost regular dodecagon with 209 irregularly shaped smaller polygon pieces of the same color. All the pieces [are] made from a combination of equilateral triangles and half-triangles, with each piece having the same total area of 6 of those triangles, and between seven and eleven sides.” (Quick aside: is the game supposed to be fun?) Anyway: Monckton put the puzzle out in 1999 and it sold a staggering 500,000 copies. The peer announced when the game was released that the first person to solve the puzzle within three years would receive a million smackers - half from his own pocket and half from private insurers. What happened next is fun: two mathematicians solved it within a year and Monckton had to mortgage his house to pay them. The Schadenfreude is strong with this one.

Sadly, this was not the first or last time that Monckton would be personally defeated by science. As a loud and persistent denier of climate change, his non-lordship must now be well used to having his fanciful suppositions patiently refuted by specialists with tonnes of corroborated evidence to back up their claims. Monckton has written a number of climate change -denying, non-peer-reviewed papers for the Science and Public Policy Institute, of which he is a Policy Director. The Science and Public Policy Institute is a hawkish organisation staffed, as far as I can work out, predominantly by Monckton, with input from such scientific advisors as Robert Carter, who in 2012 was found to have been paid a fee to advance ideas sceptical of climate change by commercial organisations with a vested interest in pumping out gases willy-nilly. The Science and Public Policy institute has also made a film, ‘Apocalypse? No!’, to rebut Al Gore’s film ‘An Inconvenient Truth’. The film is patented gobbledygook, but it’s got a funny title so I thought I’d mention it.

On, then, to Monckton’s latest claim that looks set to be tragically vanquished by science. “Official survey after official survey,” he bleats, without providing links to these documents, “had shown that homosexuals had an average of 500-1,000 partners in their sexually active lifetime, and that some had as many as 20,000. One wonders how they found time for anything else.” Indeed. Perhaps he thinks the Q stands for quick. I’m no Alan Turing but I calculate that I would have to get jiggy with 1.55 men a day for the next 35 years to reach my target of 20K lays. Don’t worry, I have  evidence to back up my assertion: (19,912/35)/365 = 1.55866927593.

Here’s the thing though. I’m starting to feel sorry for Lord Monckton, and anguished by his perpetual seppuku with the sword of Science. So I hereby make this vow: if he is willing to put up a million pound prize for the first man to reach 20,000 discrete homosexual bangs in a lifetime, I will apply the tenets of science to my quest to become that man and vindicate him. He can draw up the terms of the challenge: for instance, oral doesn’t count, and all my partners have to have their separate identity verified by a panel of face specialists. There will have to be an independent supervisor present during each distinct act of intercourse, obviously, to ensure that I’m not making up my figures. I’ll draw up a plan to systematically meet those numbers, with weekly, monthly and yearly targets, and arrange for my annual results to be audited by a committee whose findings will be made available to all in an open source document. Only then, when Monckton is 97 and I have exhausted myself getting down on the good foot and doing the bad thing with a minimum of one man every day for the last 3.5 decades, then, at last, he will be able to claim superior knowledge and tell the gay men of the world “I told you so”, as he sells up his last property to hand me my moolah. That’s if the world still exists by then of course, because have you heard the bad news about greenhouse gases?

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