Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Aussies love to meat and greet

Here is a great man; Enlightened, intelligent and definitely worthy of listening to. His name is Dr. Lionel Tiger, and he's a Charles Darwin Professor of Anthropology at Rutgers University.

His title reflects his pioneering role in introducing biosocial data into the social sciences. Since the mid-1960's he has been deeply involved in bridging the gap between the natural and social sciences. He has asserted that the words used appear to imply that human social behavior is somehow not natural. But of course it is. Exploring how and why is Tiger's central adventure. As a teacher, writer of books and articles which have been widely published and translated and as co-Research Director of the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation, he has been an influential figure in broadening our knowledge about why we do what we do.

He combines his scientific expertise with a lively sense of humor to offer original, entertaining and informative lectures that challenge what is entrenched or fashionable, and move intellectually where others fear to tread. Currently he is focused on day care, young males, the pill, college demographics, the workforce, and the ways in which humans are becoming progressively more and more alienated from their biological roots.

In this article in the Melbourne Herald-Sun newspaper, he states that Aussies love to meat and greet. You know gather 'round the barbie, chew on a chop or sit at the table and carve the Sunday roast. I couldn't agree more.

In the article he said "meat cravings were as instinctive to the average Aussie as our desire for human touch."

"It's sort of like sex," Dr Tiger said. Um, either he aint buying the right meat or he's doing something else wrong!!

"Nobody when they're engaged in sexual activity says, 'This is good for the species', but the fact is that it's extremely pleasurable and it does carry on the species.

Dr Tiger's comments came on the back of research that revealed almost eight in 10 Australians rated roast beef or lamb to be among their favourite meals.

"Australians certainly seem to act as if meat is important to them, the Sunday roast and the leg of lamb, these are still punctuation points for family interaction," he said.

Despite vegetarianism being fashionable in some circles, Dr Tiger said taste buds were designed to crave meat because humans needed omega 3, zinc, iron and vitamin B12.

See my post here about Omega-3, zinc iron and V B-12.

"If you're a vegetarian you still need to compensate for the lack of meat, and the simpler answer is to have a piece of meat sometimes," he said.

The research also revealed 96 per cent of Australians loved the social experience of gathering together to carve up a roast.

This simply meant Aussies had not evolved too far from our hunter-gatherer ancestry, where killings would be shared around a campfire, Dr Tiger said.

While I don't do any actuall killing myself (no opportunity), I'm never happier than when my partner and I have people over for a BBQ dinner then sit around the fireplace and tell stories and talk until the wee small hours...


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