212: Brain

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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The rest is fear of raptors.
Title text: The rest is fear of raptors.


Growing up, many children grow a fascination with tree houses. Tree houses are a child's own special place to do stuff away from their parents, have some autonomy, perhaps form a club. The obsession with tree houses usually fades once a child reaches their teenage years, but of course some of us never grow up. Being an adult geek/scientist who still enjoys childish things, Randall wants to build a sophisticated tree house rather than a simple one.

The Swiss Family Robinson is a novel by the Swiss pastor and writer Johann David Wyss. In the novel, a shipwrecked family builds a tree house as good as a normal house complete with library and mechanical contraptions.

The title text makes reference to the regular xkcd joke about how terrifying Velociraptors from the movie Jurassic Park are. But they could never reach a tree house.

"Raptors" might refer to the informal bird group, hawks and owls and such, a joke relying on the previous infatuation with velociraptors.


My Brain
[Picture of Brain. Line points at a highlighted area.]
Section that is devoted, no matter where I go in life, to planning the ultimate tree house*.
*Oh man, it would be like Swiss Family Robinson, but with multiple trees connected by... hey come up to my room and see the blueprints!

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I wonder if the brain is colored blue because it contains the 'blue'print for the tree house. Biohazard (talk) 12:51, 3 August 2013 (UTC)

The brain is oddly shapec, but the treehouse area seem to overlap the audio cortex13:37, 28 August 2014 (UTC)

"Hey, come up to my room..." Could be a generic pickup line (probably not a very effective one, but that's part of joke.) Mountain Hikes (talk) 21:48, 22 September 2015 (UTC)

It could instead be a reference to the fact that kids often invite other kids to their room to hang out or discuss things, as that's often the only private place kids have in the house, carrying on the idea of how childlike his constant desire to build a treehouse is --GeekKat (talk) 23:24, 4 November 2018 (UTC)

Are we sure about "But they could never reach a tree house"? I think velociraptors were able to climb trees. (New Scientist) DownGoer (talk) 17:14, 26 June 2023 (UTC)