The Buffalo Theory
|(Update - I
recently discovered that this Cheers episode "Buffalo Theory" is a
widely accepted misunderstanding. Cliff never actually said this
during the show. Still,
this scenario fits Cliff's character so well, I have no problem
visualizing the scene.)
an episode of "Cheers," Cliff Clavin, the trivia-spouting, quirky,
irksome mama's boy mailman is seated at the bar describing the buffalo
theory to his buddy, Norm Peterson, the beer loving heavyweight bar
stool sitting perpetual patron.
Cliff expounds his "Buffalo Theory" to Norm:
“Well, you see, Norm, it’s like this. A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest buffalo. And when the herd is hunted, it’s the slowest and weakest ones at the back that are killed first. This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because the general speed and health of the whole group keeps improving by the regular killing of the weakest members.
In much the same way, the human brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. Now, as we know, excessive intake of alcohol kills brain cells. But naturally, it attacks the slowest and weakest brain cells first. In this way, regular consumption of beer eliminates the weaker brain cells, making the brain a faster and more efficient machine.
And that, Norm, is why you always feel smarter after a few beers.”