Prominent pet psychiatrist Gerald Gillilander stumbled across a startling find near his home/dog asylum in Austin, Texas. Namely, he stumbled across the dead carcass of his longtime companion, a German Shepherd he called Ralphie. But nobody calls Ralphie any longer because, as Gillilander concluded, Ralphie was called to death–literally–by a female Shepherd responding to the name of Nadine*, whom the asylum had admitted for aggression two months prior to Ralphie’s demise.
Nadine’s aggression took the form of barking, rather than biting, and that was the rub for Ralphie. Ralphie was a male dog who lacked the ability to move in any direction when confronted with a female dog’s commands. After spending two months riveted to the spot by Nadine’s incessant noise, Ralphie rolled over and died.
Later that same day, as Professor Gillilander took a long drive through the city streets to mourn his friend, something in his brain clicked at the sound of the female voice on his GPS. He found himself ignoring her commands. In fact, he wasn’t headed in any one direction, but had randomly told the GPS he meant to arrive at Pet Smart in order to buy a leash with which to hang himself. As he missed each-left hand turn and the subsequent instructions, “Make a u-turn on Broadway five feet ahead. You passed it, you dummy. Make a u-turn on Market. Now repositioning. Repositioning again,” he felt calmer and more confident than he had in years.
With one hand still holding the wheel, he fumbled open the black bag he used for house calls and checked his blood pressure, heart rate and body temperature. His blood pressure was 115 over 80, his heart rate normal, his body temperature an average 98.6. He hadn’t seen these healthy numbers for many months, not since he’d hired his latest secretary, Alma Hartford, a woman whose sole purpose in life was to be obeyed, even by her employer.
He drove around town for some time, ignoring the GPS commands, while continuing to monitor his numbers. After precisely forty-two minutes, his blood pressure rose to its usual 160 over 97. His temperature rose to 101, he felt a strong pulsing at the side of his neck, and he clenched the steering wheel with so much ferocity that the skin on his knuckles turned a peculiar hue of yellow. Sensing his impending death, he reprogrammed the GPS to guide him home. When the female voice instructed him to take a right at the next intersection, he obeyed. Ironically, at the first sign of compliance, his body relaxed and his blood pressure dropped back to a healthy level.
Back at home in his study, he massaged his head, and he thought deeply about the day’s adventures. When he hadn’t obeyed the voice, he’d relaxed. But the calmness produced by this pattern of behavior hadn’t lasted. What could it mean?
The next day, he set about collecting and testing the pituitary glands of male and female human subjects and subjecting them to various vocal frequencies. In order to accomplish this, he created a contraption using simulated model ears attached to the pituitary glands by tubes ending in reeds able to vibrate at a wide range of frequencies. This was placed in a simulated brain atmosphere, so as not to damage the glands before reattaching them to their respective hypothalami.
A pattern soon began to emerge. Male pituitary function was positively or negatively stimulated by the frequency range of 165 to 255 Hz, the standard range of the human female voice, while female pituitary function didn’t respond in any substantial way to a frequency below 180 and above 85 Hz, or the frequency range of the male voice.
But just as his responses to the female voice of his GPS didn’t show stable results, so the stimulation of the male pituitary didn’t net a stable set of hormone secretion. And once again, he slunk to his office,but this time to pore over his data. Then, he saw it. In order for the male pituitary to secrete regulated doses of hormones, it had to follow a formula of roughly 70% silence to 30% female command frequency. Yet silence is a shaky term to define. He had succeeded in simulating silence merely by ignoring the GPS voice for approximately seventy minutes out of a hundred. The following thirty out of a hundred had restabilized his hormone secretions.
Gillilander dubbed his discovery the “Out of Eden Complex”. Numerous male human studies later, he’s opened his psychiatric practice and asylum to his male friends, as long as they’re willing to share a room–or car–with a canine. His research caused numerous relationship problems, unfortunately, and the “time away” his patients suddenly needed from their female partners became a necessity not originally foreseen by the advice he gave them to “simply ignore their female significant others 70% of the time, and you’ll reach optimal health”. The ratio counters he provided them at a cut-rate cost of $99.99, plus money-back guarantee, were returned to him smashed. Now, he advises his male patients to use the GPS for their 70% silent time.
“Balance,” Dr. Gillilander concluded, “is the key to life. Your GPS won’t yell at you. Take your own route with her, ignore her commands, and you’ll come up roses. That’s a great idea, actually. Give her the address to the dry-cleaner’s and, instead, drive to the flower shop.”
How have these startling discoveries affected the doctor’s life? Sadly, his secretary, Alma Hartford, quit her job. But she’s since become his wife, and the two are the proud parents of a female terrier whose yip is bigger than her bite.
*Name changed in order to protect patient-doctor confidentiality