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The Not 100% Complete FAQs for the Pretty Fucked Up Person in a Pretty Fucked Up World

What's war got to do with it?

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Now it's time to meet the pushiest, biggest, most complicated member of your Management Team....

Ladies and Gentlemen, Your Social Brain!

Let it take a bow, because your Social Brain has a big ego and is especially vain and loves attention and compliments.

The first question we are going to address (even though you could care less) is where did your Social Brain come from and what is it doing in your head?

Your Social Brain was developed a long long long time ago when evolution was first fucking around with the idea of creating human beings. Although it did tinker with the concept of a bi-pedal not completely furry tool-utilizing animal for a long time before it really got in gear with the Social Brain concept. At a certain point in the fossil record, there is evidence of an explosion (or explosions) of furious Social Brain activity such as cave art, burying the dead, musical instruments, dental work, caring for the elderly, ritual torture and so on. As you can tell from the above partial list of social brain activities, Your Social Brain is extremely versatile and just as prone to strike up a jaunty tune as it is to ritually disembowel your enemies. With such a wide range of interests, it is no wonder your Social Brain is huge and prone to meddle into every aspect of your affairs.

The Social Brain owes its existence to a disturbing or exhilarating evolutionary fact, depending on your point of view: Human beings live and die in clumps. They don't live and die in cute little individual-sized compartments, they live and die in big, fat, fucking clumps. A major part of your evolutionary fitness has to do with not how much iron you can pump or your admirably low blood pressure and resistance to disease - it has to do with what fucking clump you're part of.

Let's take an example - the Hiroshima and Nagasaki clumps at the end of World War II - not good clumps for the evolutionary fitness of their members. Those people didn't have a hard fucking time reproducing and caring for their children because they had bad fucking dietary habits, weren't too fucking smart, weren't too strong, weren't aggressive enough or were too aggressive - those people had a hard fucking time reproducing because someone dropped a big fat fucking bomb on their entire clump and killed them! This was not the fault of the individuals who got vaporized - they were in the wrong fucking clump at the wrong fucking time.

When the Black Death swept through Europe and made vigorous and largely successful attempts to kill most Europeans, some survived because they had better disease-resistant genes and some survived because they got fucking lucky. But the majority of them died because they were smack in the middle of a big clump overrun with a vicious deadly disease! People who weren't in the middle of the clump overrun with the disease didn't die of it. They were in other luckier clumps peacefully or not so peacefully breeding.

When the Native American population of the US was busy being almost completely annhilated, the US settlers were not killing them all off because the individual Indians were not much good at chess or had less than perfect muscular development - they were killing them off because they were intent on effectively destroying the whole fucking clump!

When ancient tribes long long long before you were born were faced with serious fucking resource shortage problems, they did not attempt to solve them by conducting a serious and detailed assessment of the individual evolutionary fitness of each member of the clumps fighting for territory and resources - instead they tried to commit genocide against the clump that wasn't theirs.

Your Social Brain was partly born out of the necessity of war.

Let's take a look at this and why war's such a good idea and such an enduringly popular feature of human life in spite of the fact that everybody fucking hates it.

War - sure you hate it - but you gotta love it!

So now we're going to make up a fictitious but tremendously moving and exciting tale of war's origins just to entertain ourselves and avoid contemplating the real problems of the current world for 15 minutes or so. Always a good use of time!

So once upon a time, in evolutionary fairy-tale land, human beings were more or less peacefully and confusedly wandering about in small clumps, exploiting the resources of the land by eating them in the form of plants and animals. This seemed like a pretty good deal since this is what animals do, and there is nothing like a lush, comfortable tropical climate and plenty of food to put you in a good mood, especially when there is a small but pleasingly plump and attractive population of the opposite sex to mate with. We're talking Garden of Eden time. And then!.....

The planet went and fucking changed! As it is oh so prone to do over time. And it came up with an extremely nasty little invention called winter and threw in a couple of bonus inventions to boot - famine, drought, scarcity, shortages, and shivering.

Yeah, when you get that really fucking cold-ass winter thing going, as the planet did at various points in our murky history, you get side effects. Lush, green, healthful plants start saying things like 'fuck! it is way too fucking cold for me to survive here! I'm gonna die!' And they do. And raindrops start saying things like - 'whoah, looks like the planet earth has pulled a fast change climate alteration on us - looks like we're not going to be raining much here anymore!' And then the little plants that were already trying to commit suicide due to temperature grumpiness start starving for water and that really does them in. And the only plants that really get a foothold in the colder, harsher, drier environment are the naturally cynical and grumpy plants that have a tendency to say things to human and other animals like 'yeah, sure go ahead and just try to eat me - I dare ya!' And the humans and other animals do, but the cynical, tough, and grumpy plants are not generous with their nutrients and it's hardly worth the fucking bother.

So the humans and other animals are pretty much forced to try to eat each other. Because when the climactic going gets tough, eating other animals gives you a lot more bang for your chewing buck. You don't see Eskimos lounging around chewing on granola now do you? You don't hear them preaching the virtues of a vegan lifestyle now do you? No you don't, because when the going gets cold and the plant life gets scarce, it is far more efficient to eat other animals who have very nicely bundled together inside themselves wonderful health-sustaining items like massive chunks of fat to keep themselves warm, and excellent furry coverings you can use to drape over yourself when you would otherwise be freezing your ass off, and amazing conglomerations of proteins and vitamins and so on. The animals you eat, bless their furry little hearts, have done a major part of the work of converting unpromising plant life and other littler animals into something your body can use.

And so hunting and general desperate scrounging for resources becomes a much bigger concern than it would if you still had your ass parked in the Garden of Eden. But you, evolutionary early human-type-thingy that you were, you dealt with it. You developed a hunting brain and realized you really really had to stick together in clumps, because there is no fucking way that you can efficiently kill the animals you need in this god-forsaken rat's ass barren patch of land you've found yourself on without the cooperation of a group. And you've got pregnant women to deal with, who it turns out, lose a fair amount of hunting speed and agility by the 8th month. But you gotta deal because no pregnant women, no babies and no babies, no human species. And then there's nursing women who need to consume a tremendous amount of calories and yet - once again it turns out that you sacrifice a lot of hunting speed and agility when you have a 3 month old clinging to your nipple.

So you deal. Men do the hunting, women bear children and do a whole bunch of other shit, old people give advice, it's cold, everybody clumps, everybody works to survive, it's tough but you hang in there. And you're making it. Until!.....

There you are in your little clump of 50 people, hanging in there, when what should appear on the horizon but another clump! Yes, it's another clump of 50 or so, extremely hungry and desperately searching for a territory that will support them. They have been wandering in desperate and increasing panic over barren landscape ever since the last territory they laid claim to went belly-up under the influence of drought, disease, their own voracious insatiable appetites, and just a general lack of resources. Now the only question on their minds is where the fuck are they going to find a territory to support them when suddenly they stumble on yours. Their eyes go wide as they note the presence of water! on your land. They notice the humble sprinkling of plant life. They freeze in their tracks and listen to the awe-inspiring clandestine patter of huntable animals lurking and hiding and scurrying in the background, just waiting to kill or be killed. They have reached the promised land! There is only one problem - you!

Now you and your clump are eyeing them and their clump warily. They eye you back. What to do? 100 people and a huntable territory that supports fifty. How do we know it supports 50? Because that's how many of you there are. If it could support more, you'd have been breeding your fucking mind out until you maxed out the number of people the land could support. But you already did that and now you are just trying to make it work - you are just barely making it work for those already in your clump. How to solve this little resource problem?

Friendliness, charity, benevolence and happy hungry sharing? Rationality, problem-solving, and mutual fucking respect? Or something else?

Let's look at our options.....




More Vocabulary Words:

Other People

Sex Brain

Social Inhibition Mechanism

Executive Brain


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