Puputov Cocktails and Other Shitty Weapons
January 18, 2019 3:37 AM   Subscribe

(SL Vice) People have definitely tried to kill each other with shit. What follows is an (almost certainly incomplete) chronological history of poo as a weapon.

As Jamie Lee Curtis Taete explains in Vice, people have used poop as a weapon for ages, from poisoned arrows "tainted with a mixture of viper venom, viper corpses, human blood, and shit" to "injecting feces into an IV." From ancient history to modern times, there are many examples of excrement used as both defensive and offensive weapons.

Excrement and the medieval catapult were a natural pairing, according to a variety of sources. During times of peace, trebuchets were employed to shower the ladies of the royal court with roses during tournaments; however its most infamous uses were more along the lines of what occurred at Nicaea. As a weapon of terror, it was unsurpassed. Not only severed heads, but hostages, captured prisoners, ineffective negotiators, lepers, plague victims, human corpses, diseased animal carcasses, barrels of excrement, and all manner of vermin were hurled over many a castle or city wall in an effort to induce capitulation.

Task & Purpose reports that during World War II, "the Japanese were known to coat bamboo spikes with animal feces so that even if the spikes didn’t kill you, an infection certainly would." According to Dark Matter: The History of Shit, by Florian Werner, "in 1978 around three hundred IRA and INLA prisoners in the Maze Prison in Northern Ireland protested against their prison conditions, they resorted in their distress to a strategy that went down in history books as the ‘dirty protest’: they stopped washing themselves, they refused to use the toilet and refused to leave their cells for cleaning by the prison staff, they spread their faeces on the walls of the prison cell."

More recently, in the spring of 2017, poop projectiles became a popular weapon at anti-government protests in Venezuela. The devices have been dubbed “Puputov cocktails” on social media, and they are becoming the trending weapon at anti-government protests in Venezuela. That is pronounced “poo-poo-tov,” and as the name indicates, they are nothing more and nothing less than bombs made with feces.

Animals and insects are highly adept at using feces as weapons. Apes are known to fling feces at zoo visitors. (Really, who can blame them? As it happens, throwing things may also be a sign of intelligence.) According to Wired, the larvae of tortoise beetles have been using shit for survival over millennia. "Not content to just sit there and get eaten, using a highly elongated and mobile anus, they build a tower of poo on a special structure on their backs. It’s dextrous too: When threatened, the larvae can smack their foes with the so-called 'fecal shield.' "

Some critters know how to use shit effectively and, well, some do not. One notable human fecal fail was reported in June of 2008. A woman fell into a tank of slurry as she tried to make "manure bombs" using her stockings, German police today said. The unfortunate woman stripped off her foul smelling clothes and fled the scene naked, along with a female accomplice wearing just her bra and pants, a police spokesman told Reuters. It is unclear what the women were going to do with the manure-filled stockings, but officials suspect it could have been related to Germany's 3-2 victory over Turkey in the Euro 2008 semi-finals that day.
posted by Bella Donna (17 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
 
Metafilter: can smack their foes with the so-called 'fecal shield.' "
posted by saysthis at 3:56 AM on January 18


When people can’t get shampoo, they’ll use real poo.
posted by GenjiandProust at 4:17 AM on January 18 [1 favorite]


G&P: I think the line you are looking for is:

Shampoo for my real friends, real poo for my sham friends.
posted by biffa at 5:16 AM on January 18 [10 favorites]


Hey, I'm trying to eat here.
posted by PHINC at 7:29 AM on January 18


I love Metafilter.
posted by Melismata at 7:52 AM on January 18 [2 favorites]


Not content to just sit there and get eaten, using a highly elongated and mobile anus, they build a tower of poo on a special structure on their backs. It’s dextrous too: When threatened, the larvae can smack their foes with the so-called 'fecal shield'.

Metafilter: A tower of poo.

Butt seriously, a mobile and dexterous anus sounds hella useful. Are there exercises one can do like Kegels, but for the anus?
posted by cynical pinnacle at 7:58 AM on January 18 [1 favorite]


I can't get over the guys name being Jamie Lee Curtis Taete.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 8:14 AM on January 18 [1 favorite]


Are there exercises one can do like Kegels, but for the anus?

OMIGOD! Could Twerking be the first step in achieving human enlightenment?
posted by biffa at 8:25 AM on January 18 [1 favorite]


Will merely note that I have never read the phrase "mobile anus" before today (thank you, Wordshore), and that sounds like a seriously excellent MF handle. The joy of reading "As mobile anus wrote..." is strongly tempting me to get a new replacement account here. But I will not, because I frequently give advice to AskMe posters who are in pain. I don't want them to be forced to read that phrase in a fragile state. Still, it was fun to read that phrase. So odd! Who (apart from the experts) knew?
posted by Bella Donna at 8:45 AM on January 18 [2 favorites]


Obligatory mention of der Schwedentrunk ("the Swedish drink").

Man, those Swedes used to be ruthless.
posted by likethemagician at 8:51 AM on January 18 [1 favorite]


But poo can be used for good too! Lincoln once reportedly avoided a duel by choosing the weapon, as the challenged party, of manure at 10 paces.
posted by ubiquity at 9:02 AM on January 18 [1 favorite]


Are there exercises one can do like Kegels, but for the anus?

Could Twerking be the first step in achieving human enlightenment?

I refer you to the seminal text on this subject, "How to Good-bye Depression: If You Constrict Anus 100 Times Everyday. Malarkey? or Effective Way?" by Hiroyuki Nishigaki.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 9:19 AM on January 18 [2 favorites]


Could Twerking be the first step in achieving human enlightenment?

A bottom of good sense.
posted by Segundus at 10:07 AM on January 18


That's not a mobile anus, silly. It's your case officer.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 10:23 AM on January 18


Gardyloo!!!!


posted by njohnson23 at 1:01 PM on January 18 [2 favorites]


Hey, I'm trying to eat here.

Hey, you probably shouldn't eat poo.
posted by loquacious at 8:42 AM on January 19


I'll leave this here.
posted by kjs3 at 8:09 PM on January 21


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