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Blondes have more fjords
December 7, 2007 10:21 AM   Subscribe

The blonde map of Europe. According to this map at least 80% of the population is fair-haired, in the central parts of Norway, Sweden and Finland. So make your reservations to see the blondes now, as the BBC reports that we'll be out of blondes by 2202. Though, Snopes calls BS on this.

This map, indicating the varying degrees of ‘blondness’ in Europe, shows how fair hair gets rarer further away from this core area – towards the south, as one intuitively might presume, but also towards the east, west and even towards the north.

Other strange maps include:

A political map of Montana
Transit Map of the world's transit systems
French kissing map
posted by psmealey (43 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
I love how the BBC seems to be laying the blame on poor, sweet-looking Ann Widdecombe.
posted by brundlefly at 10:26 AM on December 7, 2007


And yet somehow I never think of Finns as having more fun.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 10:31 AM on December 7, 2007


That French kissing map was not what I expected. Still interesting though.
posted by motty at 10:35 AM on December 7, 2007


will the great die-off include "strawberry blondes"?
posted by saulgoodman at 10:42 AM on December 7, 2007


They suggest that dyed-blondes are more attractive to men who choose them as partners over true blondes.

Ohmygod this is like, totally terrible news. I'd better start buying hair dye. :(
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 10:44 AM on December 7, 2007


The same was being said about redheads not too long ago.
posted by Sk4n at 10:51 AM on December 7, 2007


Don't feel too bad, Sk4n. We don't have souls.
posted by brundlefly at 10:57 AM on December 7, 2007


I live in Sweden, but I've seen more blondes in Rome. Females that is. Funny how you never see any blond Italian males.
posted by three blind mice at 10:58 AM on December 7, 2007


They suggest that dyed-blondes are more attractive to men who choose them as partners over true blondes.

I would have called this total BS until Jennifer Morrison in this season of House.
posted by 517 at 11:03 AM on December 7, 2007


The same was being said about redheads not too long ago.

I wouldn't fret. I don't know any redheads on either my or my husband's side of the fam, but we gave birth to a fiery redheaded daughter.(And yes, she is definitely my husband's child, so no snarking.)
posted by konolia at 11:05 AM on December 7, 2007


Will the blond jokes die off with their subjects
and what about a blond historical museum
or better yet, lets just send a letter to the president to put us on the endangered species list. I'll be apart of another dying breed like trick-or-treaters.
Think of the possibilities!
posted by Viomeda at 11:08 AM on December 7, 2007


This is a pretty great blog. Also, you know what that Finland map looks like? The aftermath of a blonde bombshell.
posted by DU at 11:09 AM on December 7, 2007


I've dated a couple of blonds before. Good riddance.
posted by saladin at 11:35 AM on December 7, 2007


The fact that blonde hair is a recessive trait is not relevant in any way whatsoever! I mean, besides the fact that random mutation could (and very clearly did) lead to blondes in the human population, the blonde trait could easily hide for dozens of generations and reemerge strong as ever. Also, I don't think most people realize that 200 years is, like, 8 generations, which probably isn't enough time to eliminate a trait from the entire population of the earth.
posted by cthuljew at 11:43 AM on December 7, 2007 [1 favorite]


Totally enjoying your map-o-phile post psmealey. The Roz Chast cartoon map of Montana is wonderful, as usual with her mischievously funny images.

The transit map you linked is really excellent. Related.

Adding to the blonde topic: Blondes in India/Pakistan/Kashmir. Some images in the thread NSFW. And blondes around the Mediterranean.
posted by nickyskye at 11:52 AM on December 7, 2007


A study by experts in Germany suggests

Could they be more vague? No.

I remember when this pseudo-story broke (note that the linked article came out in 2002). The prediction was attributed to some UN population-monitoring agency. A few days later, that agency disavowed having anything to do with that prediction, or the future prevalence of natural blondes.

I will make my own prediction: in the future, my hair will be gray.
posted by adamrice at 11:53 AM on December 7, 2007


Don't trust the map. There are all sorts of attempts to do this and they are not very scientific or reliable. For one thing, there is no scientific definition of what "blond" means. Yet, we all know it when we see it, it's a cultural definition.
posted by stbalbach at 11:54 AM on December 7, 2007


poor, sweet-looking Ann Widdecombe
We may laugh, but it's not sweet to accuse people of vampirism.
posted by exogenous at 11:57 AM on December 7, 2007


I wonder if there's any naturally blond fully blooded asians. Now that would be interesting.
posted by Octoparrot at 12:02 PM on December 7, 2007


You who else mourned the decreasing blonde population in northern europe, and took steps to protect their recessive genes? That's right! A brunette!
posted by blue_beetle at 12:03 PM on December 7, 2007 [1 favorite]


I'm a red-headed Norwegian and I don't plan on dying what with my having to re-populate the world and all.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 12:21 PM on December 7, 2007


Wow, 21 posts and this thread has already been Godwinned.
posted by chips ahoy at 12:28 PM on December 7, 2007


I suppose this might be the post for me to ask this question that's always plagued me... what exactly is the reasoning behind the absolutely brutal mockery of people with "ginger" hair in Britain?

Sometimes the entire punchline to an insult I'll see on British tv will be "Oh, well, you know how gingers are! Ha ha ha! Poor bloke!" And I'm thinking, "No... actually, I don't. Are they all serial killers there or something?" I mean, is it some kind of anti-Irish racism thing, or what? Because even Prince Harry has ginger hair. So wtf?
posted by miss lynnster at 12:45 PM on December 7, 2007


I thought Prince Harry's ginger hair was brought up because he may have been sired by James Hewitt.
posted by pieoverdone at 12:49 PM on December 7, 2007


I don't trust information without a primary source. If the numbers are real it wouldn't have been difficult to name the survey that found them.

That said the blondness dividing line in the UK is identical to the "border between the two Englands" further down on the same blog.
posted by dgaicun at 12:56 PM on December 7, 2007


BBC prints some stupid pseudo-science articles. There was an article 2 months ago about how the human race was going to split in two.
posted by bhnyc at 12:56 PM on December 7, 2007


Never mind, I kind of dyslexically flipped the direction of the line. Similar, but not identical.
posted by dgaicun at 12:59 PM on December 7, 2007


Here's a joke. "What's the difference between a terrorist and a redhead?"

Here's the punchline. "You can negotiate with a terrorist."


Anyone who knows my daughter would be laughing their posterior off at that one. Because in her case, it's true.
posted by konolia at 12:59 PM on December 7, 2007


We may laugh, but it's not sweet to accuse people of vampirism.

Ah! I should have Googled her. I thought she was just some random bottle-blonde "woman on the street." I see by her Wiki entry that she's a "pro-family values" Conservative. Fuck her, then. She's probably killing the natural blondes off with her bare, claw-like hands.
posted by brundlefly at 1:13 PM on December 7, 2007


I wonder if this data was self-reported. I would have stubbornly listed my own hair as blond (I was born a towhead), even though it has gradually turned a blondish-reddish-brown over time.
posted by A Long and Troublesome Lameness at 1:33 PM on December 7, 2007


Here's a joke. "What's the difference between a terrorist and a redhead?"

Here's the punchline. "You can negotiate with a terrorist."


Anyone who knows my daughter would be laughing their posterior off at that one. Because in her case, it's true.
posted by konolia
I don't know your daughter. Is she a terrorist you can negotiate with?
posted by Schmucko at 1:42 PM on December 7, 2007


I'd like to see a more detailed map, and check what I've been told, that northern rivers running east west have more blonds on the northern banks than the southern, due to the obstacle to interbreeding.
posted by StickyCarpet at 1:47 PM on December 7, 2007


Wow, no blonde jokes? I'm disappointed impressed.
posted by LordSludge at 1:50 PM on December 7, 2007


My last comment was a blonde joke!
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 1:52 PM on December 7, 2007


I vaguely recall a line along the lines of more blond than brunet Britons getting killed in WWI because the fair haired were of the higher classes, first to respond to the call of duty folk, as opposed to the dirty haired slackers who put it off until Armistice Day. Thus- fewer blond breeders in Albion ever after.

I expect it's rubbish, but interesting in its own stereotypical way. (And of course "I vaguely recall" has about as much credibility as "a study by experts in Germany".)

Confidential to 3BM - I actually have seen blond Italian males, not in Rome, but in southern Italy. A throwback to Norman invaders is the standard explanation.
posted by IndigoJones at 2:21 PM on December 7, 2007


I don't know your daughter. Is she a terrorist you can negotiate with?

She is a redhead, and a force of nature to be reckoned with.
posted by konolia at 2:34 PM on December 7, 2007


I took my son - who has inherited my hair color - to school recently, and met a Mom of another child who I hadn't met before. She knows my wife pretty well. Her comment? "How did Johnny get that lovely red hair then, if both you and Mrs Sk4n are strawberry blond?"

I'm NOT strawberry blond - though Mrs Sk4n is. I'm going FUCKING GRAY thank you.

Made my day, that did. But of course it was sotto voce.
posted by Sk4n at 2:50 PM on December 7, 2007


This is a pretty great site. Thanks for the link, psmealey. I'm enjoying the variety.

Although the Australian Middle Earth one is a little weak.
posted by mosessis at 3:17 PM on December 7, 2007


And yet somehow I never think of Finns as having more fun.

Well, I usually think of the Finns as being more drunk. That's a lot of people's definition of fun.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 4:10 PM on December 7, 2007


Some credible, (but no longer credible in my book), scientific type, came up with the vanishing blond theory, and a theory as to why blonds and redheads exist, and presented this all as science. Lord, God, almighty, what a meat head.

His theory was that women became blond and red headed to attract dwindling hunters in the North, during the last ice age.

The one thing that really socially characterized the Northern Europeans, and Nordic peoples, was that women and men, could choose their mates. Scandinavians didn't marry until they could prove the fertility of the union.

My theory, and as you know, I am a famous Scientist (not), is that mutual selection, makes for great variation, and an acceptance of what would be typically recessive traits. Individual and unique traits are more than tolerated, they are beloved, and therefore flourish down through generations.

Where there is a tight control on marriage, parents choose spouses for their young that look like the parents, guaranteeing less diverse appearance. Polygamy, and first cousin marriages, also decrease diverse appearance.

Love is grand, and mutual lust is a brush that paints our species with many individual traits, that are accentuated because of that magnifying mirror of mutual intrigue. The blond, the redhead, the brunette, the curly haired, the tall, the short, the skinny, the fat, none of these things are going to vanish in our species.

When we are not allowed to look at each other before marriage, then there is no opportunity to let our genes help us make a decision regarding who we will love. That is such an important part of species variation, even fashion, and who is fashionable in a generation, will help with variation. Variation and choice is what keeps us beautiful, regardless of whether we are blond, or brown.

We can artificially alter, (who am I to say it is artificial) our species by social convention, and conventions can change drastically in a relatively brief time. For instance, I read recently that Saudi Arabia, and Yemen, home of the Queen of Sheba, were at one time, matrilineal. Current custom is certainly a radical departure from that.
posted by Oyéah at 11:00 PM on December 7, 2007


what exactly is the reasoning behind the absolutely brutal mockery of people with "ginger" hair in Britain?

Sometimes the entire punchline to an insult I'll see on British tv will be "Oh, well, you know how gingers are! Ha ha ha! Poor bloke!" And I'm thinking, "No... actually, I don't. Are they all serial killers there or something?" I mean, is it some kind of anti-Irish racism thing, or what?


It's a good question. I don't think it's an anti-Irish thing as there are plenty of non-Irish red headed British people. I personally think it has to do with the very pale skin/freckles combination that comes with ginger hair, which can make people look a bit freakish and different. From there, I think it's just a cultural thing that's become too ingrained to be questioned - much like hatred of the Welsh.

Personally, red hair/pale skin is very attractive to me. Every time I say this people react with disgust and then try to suggest I'm making it up to be different or mentally impaired. I get much the same reaction when I say I don't think there's anything particularly wrong with Welsh people.
posted by Summer at 4:20 AM on December 8, 2007


I can't stop thinking about this phrase (from the Snopes link): "The major said the blondes were on the toboggan."

Also, that gum you like is coming back in style.
posted by GrammarMoses at 9:46 AM on December 8, 2007


Whoa, how did I miss this thread?

I wonder if there's any naturally blond fully blooded asians. Now that would be interesting.

I think this is as close as you're going to get.
posted by A dead Quaker at 12:13 PM on December 8, 2007


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