Phineas Gage Had A Hole In His Head And Paul Gascoinge Really Did Go To Italy
The latest rhyme to pass the fact test is that of Phineas Gage. As the rhyme goes:
“Phineas Gage had a hole in his head, and ev’ryone knew that he oughta be dead. Was it fate or blind luck, though it never came clear, kept keepin’ on year after year…”
The BBC reports that Phineas worked on the railways in Vermont. On 13 September 1848, the iron rod he used to pack down explosives created a spark and detonated the powders.
The iron rod shot into his face. It entered below an eye and exited through his skull at the top of his head. He lived.
But his bran was altered. John Aggleton, professor of neuroscience at Cardiff University explains:
“It’s reported that he became what now would be classically described as ‘disinhibited’ – this is a classic term for what happens to some people after damage to their frontal lobes. So, he loses his inhibitions, both in a social and emotional context. He would be rather high.”
Says Malcolm Macmillan, professor of psychology at Melbourne University and an authority on Gage:
“When Phineas’ accident occurred, there was no accepted doctrine of the brain having functions. It alerted people to the fact that a part of the brain – the frontal lobes – that we associate with sort of planning and intellectual strategies also had this important role in emotion.”
Phineas Gage lived for 12 years after his accident, dying age 37. Dr Foster died of MRSA in hospital. Paul Gascoinge will save the world with fishing rod and roast chicken…