Sure, we joke about it, but now science supports it: Men are idiots. In a new study that would seem laughable if it wasn’t published in the respectable British Medical Journal, English researchers tested the “male idiot theory” (yes, that actually is the academic name for it) and found that guys are more likely to be admitted to an emergency room because of accidental injuries, sports injuries, or from car accidents. (ER visits are pricey for everyone! If you don’t have an emergency fund already, check out these 16 Money Rules Every Woman Should Know by Age 30.)
The researchers analyzed idiotic behavior by combing through the winners of the Darwin Award, an honor given to those who “improve our gene pool by removing themselves from it.” Not only do men make up almost 90 percent of the honorees of the tongue-in-cheek award, but winners are almost always crowned after death—which means the winners are mostly people who died doing stupid stunts (the study authors did note that idiotic men may be more newsworthy than idiotic women, skewing the candidate pool).
Listen, we know that men aren’t actually dumber than women. After all, men and women now have pretty comparable IQs. But they are more likely to do senseless stuff, say the study authors: Men are more willing to take completely unnecessary risks, simply as a rite of passage or to score bragging rights. And while we’re not going to tell you not to use these findings for bragging rights in your house, don’t overlook the real message: While we all know not to stand on the tree limb we’re trying to chainsaw off, maybe don’t turn your back next time your guy is doing some yardwork, or he might just end up in the ER.