Ok, so Tom and I went to lunch today and were discussing flies*. I am not completely sure where the topic sprouted, but we were confused by the effectiveness of flyswatters. When compared to, say, your hand. They are about the same size, so why do flies always escape from your hand attacks? Tom theorized that it was because you swing the flyswatter faster because you are not afraid of hurting your hand. I thought maybe it was harder for the fly to see the swatter. Needless to say we are in awe of the swatter. That only applies to the “smart” flies. As Tom pointed out there are some types of flies (normally the ones that repeatedly bang head first into glass) that you can kill with you hand, heck you can kill them with a simple flick, but those are of little more than entertainment value.
So Tom proposed the theory of Fly vs. Human brain size: If a fly has the brainpower it takes to fly around, stick to walls, find food, avoid hand attacks and everything else a fly needs to do — yet it’s brain the size of a pin head, what the hell is wrong with our big ole brains. Is the processing power of a brain proportional to size? We basically assumed yes, and then wanted to know why we are wasting our brain. Yeah, yeah, we all know that humans only use 10% of our brains, but our brains are at least a bazillion times bigger than a fly’s — and if you go with the assumption that flies use 100% of their brain then we are like …1 bazillion / 10 … Carry the 1 … lots smarter.
Of course, ultimately this led nowhere, but in the mean time we came up with a few possible explanations for Tom’s 1st theory of flies. My favorite is that perhaps they cannot store memories in their brains at all, thus freeing up all the entire brain for processing proposes. This has the added bonus of everything being exciting and new (“oh, wow, this stuff is great, what is it? Poo you say? I think I will hang here for a while”), like that blue fish from Finding Nemo. Perhaps everything is hardwired in a fly’s brain so it needs much less hardware. Of maybe we humans are just so lazy that we only use one bazillionth of are brain, and if we a fly grows a big brain like us it will take over the world.
*I realize that now I have written two entries about flies, let me assure you that I have very little interest in this topic unless they are A) invading my bedroom, or B) Tom brings up the topic at Wendy’s. Mmmm, Magic Mountain Spicy Chicken Sandmich.