A reader kindly sent us this video, which was allegedly created to improve the image of women in science. The reader sent it with this note, “Got your marching (strutting) orders.” I have little to say except that the shoes are not an ideal choice for any kind of field work. Higgs, however, has some observations:
Higgs: There is nothing here to be ashamed of people. What you’re seeing is a somewhat exaggerated display of fertility. I have engaged in a similar behavior myself before my contraceptive procedure. I would strut down the alley with my tail as upright as a flagpole, showing the all world my impressive gonads.
I wasn’t any less intelligent back then, but my behavior was more powerfully influenced by sex hormones. Again – nothing to be ashamed of. Now that I’ve been separated from my gonads I live a more cerebral and contemplative life, much like Peter Abelard. There is no connection between my prowess as a scientific thinker and my fertility.
We cats rely more on olfactory cues when it comes to mating. You primates tend to use visual cues as well, some of them quite striking. Humans are rather interesting in having evolved “concealed ovulation” and making heavy use of body ornamentation to display wealth, group membership, social status and of course fertility. The use of high heels and make-up are well-explained in the evolutionary psychology literature. I’m not familiar with any scientific explanation for nail polish, however.