Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Fancy a mid-week quickie with The Magpie?

If that sounds a bit saucy, it's because today we must talk of the - uh oh -  F word. Now before you pick up your skirts and dash away for the laudanum bottle - or in the case that you're a gal, suddenly develop a headache - the F word in question here is - Fenugreek. This is a herb, and is not, as Mongrel the Barrister imagined, a regionally identified position in the Karma Sutra. Fenugreek is an age-old staple spice for curry.

It has also long been known that among it's many medicinal properties, fenugreek has for eons been used to assist in the smooth flow of lactating milk, and has been a proven breast enlarger.
But The `Pie was thrown into deep contemplation this week with the outcomes of a study by Brisbane-based company Applied Science and Nutrition, in conjunction with the University of Queensland's medical school, which (somehow) found that men taking fenugreek can boost their sex drive by at least a quarter.

Read on to have a look at the story, and contemplate the host of unanswered question that have been left - well, left dangling.

First, have a gander at this brief report on the findings. 

Like many stories about scientific inquiry, the findings raised more than that reported on the - let's say -  centrally-located interest of the test group. Chief among these unanswered questions of course is - 25% of what? Benchmarks weren't revealed, so if this is a time-based matter, going from 15 seconds to 20 seconds isn't much to write home about; or if it is a frequency-based study, going from one to two in the six week period - 100% - is going to screw as well as skew the stats and is hardly likely to have the little lady doing cartwheels.

But other bigger question abound.

For instance there is no mention of just how this six week study was carried out. Or how it was verified. (Those wishing to be part of a peer review group should report to the Brisbane HQ of this mob - you can join the the end of the queue somewhere north of Rockhampton.) 

On the face of it, it seems it was an honour system of self-reporting by the blokes. 

Now, as any of you from the distaff side of the ledger would already be scoffing, asking blokes about their performance in this popular extra curricular activity elicits replies that the accuracy and honesty of which ranks alongside the size of the fish that got away or golf scores.  And like the fish and the golf score, this particular round of 18 holes is unlikely to be, let's say, wholly accurate.

Other queries go unaddressed. 

Does fenugreek's alleged effect act like a sort of sexual seafood extender, where lineal measurement is the yardstick, or was it an increased frequency of close encounters of the fun kind that are measured. (The Magpie here is making the generous assumption that a partner was involved - there is not a snowball's chance that blokes would be coming back boasting about any increased frequency if the onus was on onan). 

Perhaps The `Pie is wrong about this. Was there, for instance, some sort of roger-metre suspended under the king size, registering all such activity 24/7. If that was the case, there is the distinct possibility that the odd tradie or brother-in-law contributed generously to the score of an unsuspecting hubby. 

Or maybe they had a bloke in a white coat at the foot of the bed, armed with a stopwatch, tape measure and a metronome to keep track of matters.

But the main flaw in this study is that partners weren't asked for their impression of any change.

Did they note any difference?

Indeed, they may not have even known of this hidden genital agenda, although they did perhaps wonder at the suddenly regular appearance of boxes of Cadbury's Assorted and bunches of long-stem red roses? Or the sudden whim of hubby to pop home for a luncheon vindaloo followed by a matinee? Did the time-honoured 'dawn breaker' become a daily de rigger? 

No, the study is flawed for The `Pie because the gals weren't canvassed about their partner's performance on the Posturpedic.

So, as we have learned with banks, oil companies and teenage dating, self-regulation just doesn't work.

Mongrel the Barrister reckons some enterprising mob - perhaps at The  Brewery in Townsville - might make a killing by inventing a beer containing the controversial F herb.(''Oh, gawd, Deidre, it's gunna be a long bloody night, he's on the bloody Foaming Fenugreek lager again!!''). Perhaps such a drop could carry the slogan ' A real stiff drink - a stubby for hubby that you'll enjoy too, ladies.' 

But the study could explain one thing.  

Since fenugreek is so widely used in curries, it could explain why, when they're not chucking another bride on the barbie, the Indians are annually punching out a few million telemarketers, cab drivers and convenience store owners for export to the world.

See you on Saturday, The Magpie is now going to get back on the nest.


  1. Another Magpie masterpiece.
    Hubs. North Ward

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