Friday, October 22, 2004


An Act of God

When she was theorizing about artificial intelligence, Ellen Ullman once wrote:

“I decided that there are huge swaths of existence that would be impenetrable—indescribable, unprogrammable—to a creature that did not eat or shit.”

Well, it turns out that Protestants may not have had their Reformation if it weren't for one man's constipation. The toliet was where Martin Luther came up with the idea and he wouldn't have been stuck there for so long if things had been working smoothly. Archaeologists, apparently, have found his spot. Whoever reported this story definately got their kicks:

The scholar suffered from constipation and spent many hours in contemplation on the toilet seat...."We still don't know what was used for wiping in those days," says Dr Treu. The paper of the time, he says, would have been too expensive and critically, "too stiff" for the purpose....Future visitors to Wittenberg's Martin Luther museum will be able to view the new find, though structural concerns mean they will not be free to test its qualities as a toilet.


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