What a maroon!

FtB generally and Pharyngula in particular had a longtime commenter nymmed What A Maroon. (Miss you! Haven’t seen you! Hope you’re well!) This, of course, comes from the classic Bugs Bunny insult, “What a maroon!” which I have always assumed to be a child-friendly corruption of “What a moron!” but whose etymology I had not examined.

Well, I still have not examined that etymology, but Janelle Shane has a new post up that does dive into the nature of human maroons and other colors. As always, her methodology is to feed data of a certain type into an AI and then see what the AI can create along the same lines. In this case, it’s an experiment in color/personality comparisons that have been popular memes for some time. Shane tells us that

“Lemon – so cool, they are almost intimidating”

is an original, human-created example of the type. But feed enough of those into the computer, and it spits back,

Maroon – owns a pet blackbird, plenty of hidden depths.

Not so moronic after all! But do you have anything else of special interest to FtB personalities, Ms. Shane?

Spiders – holy shit, a spider horse!

While I remain unconvinced that “spider” is a color for anyone other than an AI system, this hypothesis that the AI knows an uncomfortably large amount about FtB is sounding more plausible.

As always, don’t save all your millions of clicks for this blog. Go read Janelle Shane lest you miss out on the deeper meanings and associations of “olive” and “zucchini”.


  1. Ridana says

    “a spider horse” clearly refers to Odin’s 8-legged steed Sleipnir. The Prose Edda reveals that Sleipnir was grey; therefore the color “spider” to the AI is likely a shade of grey.

  2. ardipithecus says

    Bugs obviously used it as a corruption of moron. He also corrupted imbecile and gullible in the same bit of dialog. Trying to attach anything more meaningful is making a mountain out of your own biases.

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