Scientists investigating why birds fly in a v-formation have completed a long and expensive study, before coming to a conclusion that was obvious to everybody else in the first place. The news that birds do this to utilise slipstreams to make flying less tiring has, in fact, been known for decades and has advanced scientific knowledge in no way whatsoever.
Interestingly, this isn’t a new phenomenon in the scientific world; many studies have been carried out which have resulted in announcements that could only be described as absolutely bleedin’ obvious. A recent investigation, for example, has concluded that drinking alcohol every day can lead to memory loss in middle-aged men. With no further investigation whatsoever, I can confirm that this would also apply to young or old men and, indeed, to women. In spite of the fact that I have just saved the scientific community a large sum of money and a considerable amount of time, I can confidently predict that they will not be thanking me for providing this information. The sad truth is that they enjoy making these completely predictable announcements and enjoying the brief limelight that accompanies them.
While the current glut of scientific information regarding the shocking revelation that sugar is bad for us is omnipresent throughout the media, in spite of the fact that losing teeth, gaining weight and developing diabetes were all adequate clues, scientists are beginning to panic about where to turn next in order to maximise attention. I have some suggestions for research proposals:
- Study to determine whether cats like sleeping
- Investigation into the correlation between insomnia and tiredness
- Mapping the extent of woody flora in bears’ preferred defecating sites
- The religion and denomination of popes since Peter the First
Of course, I could tell them the answers, but I wouldn’t want to spoil their fun.