11 Points

11 Most Awesome Useless Body Parts
written by Sam Greenspan

This week, we filmed a major production at work. (It was a corporate sponsored thing that Paul and I didn't write, though, so significantly curb expectations.)

Anyway, there was a line in it about vestigial tails and how interesting they are. Which got me thinking about extraneous body parts. Which got me typing about extraneous body parts. Which brings us to now, and my list of the 11 most awesome useless, pointless and obsoleted body parts.

  1. How cool would their Halloween costumes be if they dressed as raccoons?
    Vestigial tail. On one hand, if you were born with a random tail, you'd be really upset. Like, you've got a tail. Your circus ceiling is instantly "freakshow attraction" and not "clown" or "ringmaster" or the most glamorous job of all, "production accountant." And if you're born in the South, they might accuse you of being a Devil child. I've seen "The Exorcist". No one wants that.

    On the other hand, having a vestigial tail could make you really happy. Because when your parents try to pump you full of self-esteem by saying you're unique and special, all you have to do is reach back and stroke your tail and you know they ain't lying.

    Not to mention how you could save money on Halloween costumes by dressing up as a different animal every year and just painting your tail a different color.

    And then, if you get it removed, you can get it bronzed, put it on a plaque on the wall, and instantly have the best conversation piece in town. Like, you think your coffee table book about the Impressionists gets people talking? Try a bronzed vestigial tail!

  2. Body hair. The day that winter coats were invented was the day that body hair became obsolete. And body hair gets a bad rap... outside of a Tom Selleck chest or Amish/ZZ Top beard, there really isn't much body hair that's considered attractive.

    So now people wax it, shave it, Nair it, trim it, pluck it, laser it and even disgustingly wipe it to get rid of it.

    Anything on the body that gets that much attention has to be awesome. (Plus, getting armpit hair was such a big moment in my late-blooming life that I have a special place in my heart for body hair.)

  3. Wisdom teeth. Like snow days, water main breaks and when the poor kid comes to school with a raging lice problem, wisdom teeth provide the youth of this country with the greatest gift in the world: An unexpected day or couple of days off school.

  4. Man nipples. I do not like man nipples because I do not like my nipples. For some reason, my nipples are ridiculously oversensitive. Like, if someone hooked up jumper cables to my nipples and the other end to a car battery, I'd be in more pain from the clamps than from the voltage. I'd be a really weird torture victim.

    Anyway, I included them on this list only because I feel like men would look really weird without nipples. Freakily weird.

    Like... with any evolutionary leap, there has to be one guy who's first, right? Even incredibly gradual changes to a multi-billion person population begin with a single step. So, I feel sorry for the first guy on the back end of the evolutionary bell curve that's born without nipples. He's going to get teased even more than the guy with giant aereolas does now.

  5. We believe in nozing, Lebowski.
    Pinky toe. Pinky toes are useless. You don't need them to balance. And you don't need them to grip tree branches to swing from... humans haven't done that in a long, long time.

    No, at this point, pinky toes basically only exist to give kidnappers in movies something to send to their captives' families to "show that they're serious." And that's awesome. I love pinky toe ex machinas.

  6. Foreskin. You may claim that it does, in fact, serve a purpose. That it adds sensitivity. That it adds to a man's ability to please a sexual partner. That it protects the tip of the penis from the elements.

    So I ask you this: If it really did serve a purpose, don't you think we Jewish people wouldn't be so cool with not having them? Like, not to stereotype my own people... but don't you think, with the legal expertise of my religion, someone would've found a loophole in God's covenant with Abraham to help us keep our foreskins?

  7. 90% of our brains. I mean... they say we only use 10%, right? So this other 90% is just hanging out there, probably storing awesome things that we can't believe we can muster on command, like the code to get to Tyson in Mike Tyson's Punch-Out (007-373-5963) or the lyrics to Shanice's "I Love Your Smile" (which I summoned out of nowhere at karaoke three weeks ago).

    Also, after reading my above paragraph on foreskins, I can assume my mom was sitting there, shaking her head, wondering if I'm even using 1% of my brain at this point.

  8. Male uterus / female vas deferes. I have a uterus. Women have vas deferenses. (Deferensi?) They're relics from back when, I guess, we were still splitting into two different genders.

    They may come in handy again when we're in a future like the one predicted at the end of "A.I.", where everyone's just a nebulous, faceless, genderless being. Uteruses for all!

  9. Extrinsic ear muscles. From what I've read, at this point, these muscles' only purpose is to let you wiggle your ears.

    And nothing impresses a toddler like wiggling your ears. At least toddlers back in the day. Today's cracked out toddler I cannot speak for.

  10. One of your kidneys. If TV is to be believed, people are always giving each other kidneys. So clearly you don't need one.

    And that's awesome. Because it's like we're each born with a a little pinkish-brownish thing in our body that's worth its weight in gold.

    You can either (1) give it to a person in need and be feted as a hero (2) sell it on the black market and get enough cash to pay off your Trans Am or (3) keep it, and keep peeing like a champion. What other body part can boast all that?

  11. Adam's Apple. It serves no medical purpose, it completely unnecessary and, therefore, makes this list.

    How is it awesome? Because, technically, it does serve one social purpose: Telling whether or not the six-foot-one broad shouldered woman looking at you is going to lead you into a Finkel/Einhorn situation.

Yeah, that's right. I didn't include the appendix or the coccyx. That's because I'm not just a puppet trying to regurgitate other people's lists. Suck on that, Internet.

This post was originally published on Friday, August 8, 2008 at 04:45:31 PM under the category Misc.

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