Saturday, June 18, 2011

Panama Prophylactic

My pal Whitney found this condom wrapper in the jungles of Panama while she was on a college expedition to study frogs!

"Here's the condom (wrapper), and a couple pictures from the forest where I found it. I was going there every day to collect data on a frog population and one day it showed up, not far from the road. The forest is on on Isla Colón, Bocas del Toro Province. I was in Panama for two months and this was the only condom I found!! Never even saw one in Bocas town, which is a dirty place." - Whitney

Christopher Columbus discovered the Bocas del Toro Province in 1502 and originally called it Isla del Drago, which loosely means "Dredged Island" - it's current name translates into "Mouths of the Bull"! And here's some bullshit for you to ponder - our dearest Whitney spent two months in this bull mouth and only found one condom wrapper there the entire time! I've spent nary an hour exploring small areas of Seattle, WA or Anniston, AL and I've come across 5 or 6 used rubbers in just one area!

What can we, as Americans, learn from this glaring dissimilarity? Do the Panamenos contain a greater sense of civic cleanliness than we? Or do their safe-sex practices leave more to be desired?

Judging from Whitney's testimony, we can assume that cleanliness shouldn't be much of a factor (no more so than in the U.S.) - so do the people of Panama merely use less condoms than we do?

According to Index Mundi, home of the Internet's most complete country profiles, the birth rate in Panama, as of this year, is 19.43 births/1,000 population (2011 est.) - compared to the United States' 13.83 births/1,000 population (2011 est.)

As intriguing as these statistics may be, they must be considered in light of the fact that abortion is currently illegal in Panama, with the exception of life-threatening circumstances. But with such an option off of the table for most potential parents, would one not expect then to find more condom wrappers?

Or are we just skimming the surface of a cultural divide which further taboos the notion of public sexual intercourse? And what is with that snake?

These mysteries are too large to be tackled in just one Found Condoms post - so I will leave you to your own conclusions.

And I will leave you with some Van Halen.

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