"Guillotine," as in the head-chopping execution machine.
"Dr. Guillotin" sounds like the name of a comic book villain whose power is decapitating people, but in reality he was the exact opposite of that. Joseph-Ignace Guillotin was a French physician and humanitarian during the post-Revolution period who strongly opposed capital punishment.
The original hippie.
Finding it impossible to convince his countrymen that chopping off heads wasn't a nice thing to do, Guillotin resigned himself to at least trying to make the executions a little more humane. At the time, people were either hanged or put to death with axes, which was messy and took a few whacks to get the job done. This was a problem for both the guy lying there with half his neck exposed and whoever was in charge of the executioner's dry-cleaning.
Guillotin proposed a recently invented device (not by him) that would quickly and cleanly cut people's heads off, the then-called "machine that cuts people's heads off." In 1789, during an assembly on capital punishment, Guillotin clumsily tried to convince everyone to adopt this device by stating that "Now, with my machine, I cut your head off in the twinkling of an eye, and you never feel it!" The room erupted in laughter at that sentence, and Guillotin's speech soon went viral. He was mocked in periodicals, and parody songs were written about him by the Weird Als of the day, like the following:
Sung to the tune of "Hot for Teacher."
Eventually, it was decided that Guillotin may have been onto something and the head-cutting device was officially adopted by the French government. However, Guillotin and his family were embarrassed by their ironic association with the machine, so they requested to the government that they change its name -- 45 minutes of solid laughter later, the government said no, so they decided to change theirs instead.
Eric Yosomono writes for GaijinAss.com and you should LIKE them on the GaijinAss FaceBook page! Josh wants to be your friend on Facebook because he loves you.
For more help with your SATs, check out 6 Everyday Words With Disturbing Alternate Meanings and 9 Words You've Used Today With Bizarre Criminal Origins.
If you're pressed for time and just looking for a quick fix, then check out The 3 Most Spectacularly Full of Crap 'Experts'.
And stop by LinkSTORM to learn what Wonging the cashier means.
Do you have an idea in mind that would make a great article? Then sign up RIGHT NOW and pitch your first article today! Do you possess expert skills in image creation and manipulation? Mediocre? Even rudimentary? Are you frightened by MS Paint and simply have a funny idea? You can create an infographic and you could be on the front page of Cracked.com tomorrow!
And don't forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr to get sexy, sexy jokes sent straight to your news feed. Are you on Google+? So are we!