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October 17, 2005

Oh, My.

I do believe this is my favorite Penny Arcade strip of all time. And that's saying something. It helps to have been a nervous new dad at some point, however. Also, don't click through if you don't want to be mildly disturbed for the rest of the day.

Posted by john at October 17, 2005 09:51 AM

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Brian Mesick | October 17, 2005 10:12 AM

It's so true, too. At the birth of my first child I was caught off guard by the, erm, ejection of the placenta. The midwife, who also happened to be my mother-in-law, removed it and placed it on a scale. I spent about 25 seconds in shocked horror thinking that my newborn daughter had a seriously ugly twin.

I've made certain to avoid the sight in the birthings of my two other children, and advise all other dads to do the same. Say it with me, folks: Placenta ain't pretty!

sceptre1067 | October 17, 2005 10:44 AM

The topic of Penny Arcade is not too far off the mark.

There was a show in England called TV Dinners, with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. The one episode not aired in the states (via Food Network) was where the family of the newborn did partake of the topic of the above strip.

Some people are quite strange...

Derryl Murphy | October 17, 2005 12:46 PM

Never had to deal with it, since both boys were emergency c-sections. However, I was one of only two kids weird enough to touch the placenta that Mr. Walmsley brought to grade 7 science class the day after he became a new dad. That moment made me a marked man for the rest of that year, I'm afraid.


John Scalzi | October 17, 2005 12:49 PM

What the hell was wrong with Mr. Walmsley, is what I want to know.

Steve Eley | October 17, 2005 01:42 PM

I find the whole topic somewhat alien, and I am a new dad. Prior to the birth I never heard from anyone that some people did things with the placenta. And at the birth, well, my wife had an emergency C-section after a day when about six things went wrong. The placenta just didn't come up, and we never thought about it.

Bill Peschel | October 17, 2005 02:10 PM

The answer to all your anxieties, obviously, is to recommend Placenta Helper, the soy-based meal extender.

Try the Tex-Mex version. It's so goooood.

Chris | October 17, 2005 03:00 PM

Googling for "placenta recipes" brings up a host of culinary delights.

John Scalzi | October 17, 2005 03:16 PM

That is a Google I intend to resist.

Dean | October 17, 2005 03:19 PM

I remember reading that some of the hippy-types who live on the Gulf Islands (that's the northern San Juans to my American brethren) were big into post-partum placenta parties.

(Did I just type that? Yes I did.)

Placenta-consumption drifts a little too close to cannibalism for my taste. Well, ok: a lot too close.

Not that I don't like placentas. I'm no placentophobe, and was grateful to the two that I have seen for the job that they did. I just don't want to eat them is all.

Ian Mathers | October 17, 2005 03:27 PM

Note also the third news item, where they call Jack Thompson out on his idiocy by donating the $10,000 he said he would, and then backed out of, to charity. In Thompson's name.

John Scalzi | October 17, 2005 03:33 PM

Yeah, I saw that. Classic.

tobias Buckell | October 17, 2005 04:59 PM

Even more disturbing to me because I worked for a guy who did this with his wife (it was boiled, but they kept some in the fridge) and they told me about it. If not for him I wouldn't have realized this clip referenced a real practice and would have laughed it off as weird penny-arcade humor...

Lisa | October 17, 2005 07:46 PM

People ACTUALLY EAT the placenta?!

I'm quite certain my husband will refuse this practice. If not, we're getting a divorce.

Paula Helm Murray | October 17, 2005 10:56 PM

I'm SOO Glad that the link made my lame-arse computer at work crash on IE (it's an old G3 Mac and on it's last legs, I've been promised a new one 'soon.' In some sort of geologic sense). I'm sure I could NOT have stopped laughing like I did when I viewed it just now.

Jon Mann | October 18, 2005 03:07 AM

You know, I also thought of googling for "placenta recipe", but was stopped by some instinct for self-preservation. Because the strip was already disturbing enough...

It's good to get some sense of Jack Thompson, the person. Sorta adds some context to the various press releases.

robert | October 18, 2005 08:50 AM

MMMMMMMMMMM......Placenta......The other white meat.

Primate | October 18, 2005 08:52 AM

I'm officially horrified to find out it wasn't just Penny-Arcade humor. I could have lived my whole life without knowing that. *blech*

Kasey Mackenzie | October 18, 2005 12:34 PM

Actually, at my first high school we had a female science teacher who SAVED her placenta from her most recently-born child and kept it in a fridge and school and would then bring it out to shower her students. Luckily I never had her as a teacher the two years I was there! Some things should just not be shown to 14-15 year olds.

Steve Eley | October 18, 2005 12:56 PM

Okay, I mentioned this all to my wife, and apparently she knows a lot more about the practice than I did. She said (although I have not verified this independently) that there are vegetarians and New Agey types who eat the placenta because it's one animal food product for which no animals were harmed. Oookaaay.

There's also the fact that the placenta is high in nutrients (this I knew), and there are some granola schools of thought that it's good for the new nursing mom, to recover proteins & stuff her body just lost. "That's why dogs eat it."

True, I've seen that. But given how many other things I've seen dogs eat, I don't find that a convincing argument.

mark | October 19, 2005 11:58 PM

As far as i understood baby was the other white meat.

Christopher Billett | October 22, 2005 11:59 AM

Oh dear God. I also laughed my comedy-hungry arse off at this strip, as I like to at least twice weekly, but I never, ever, even though for a nano-second that it could be based on true events...

Jason Hubbard | April 4, 2006 06:30 PM

Well, sure other mammals may do it. However, we must also remember that other mammals also lick their owns butts, and *I'm* certainly not going to start that practice. ;)

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