January 29, 2009
January 28, 2009
... one of the most significant findings of the Human Genome Project: that human beings have only (approximately) 20,000 genes.
Let’s do some math. You share exactly 1/2 of your genetic material with either of your parents. Move to an individual a generation back, and that person shares only 1/4 of your genetic material with you. You see what’s coming? How many generations back do you think you have to go before you pass the 1/20,000 threshold? The answer is that you share virtually no genetic material with your ancestors who were contemporaries of Christopher Columbus. Let me repeat that in more general terms: you are no more genetically related to your distant ancestors than you are to any randomly selected individual from anywhere on the planet. On the other hand, you do share an astonishingly high (compared to other species) percentage of your genetic material with virtually every person now living or who has ever lived.
So what does this mean in terms of tribal lineage? The blog writer draws this conclusion:
This means that being the literal, biological descendants of Abraham, or Noah, or Ham, or Seth, or Cain, or Adam is meaningless. Meaningless in the sense that, well so what — everyone else is too; and meaningless in the sense that you are not any more genetically related to any of them any more than you are to anyone else.
So really, we're all the tribe of Dan and the tribe of Ephraim, genetically speaking. Now if you read the entire article (which I highly recommend), you see that these conclusions don't automatically mean OH NOES! THE CHURCH ISN'T TRUE!! You really have to draw your own conclusions, but I like where the blog author goes with this. It makes the sudden blood transformation I pictured when I first heard this doctrine a little less dramatic. But it allows for a lot of 'what if' speculation that people like me love to think about, and most gospel doctrine teachers dread.
So what if that stake patriarch from my Young Women's class was right, and lineage really is like hair color or eye color? If we really are genetic descendants from every tribe (that has descendants), what determines dominant and recessive "tribe" genetics? Does that give new or different meaning to the literal gathering of Israel? I will quickly expose the limit of my knowledge on lineage doctrine and genetics pretty quickly if I keep going with the what ifs, so I'll stop. I guess this whole lineage thing still fascinates me, and this article just renewed my interest in it.
January 22, 2009
I was thinking about this as I experienced yet another awkward embarrassing life moment. I'm not going to give the details, because I'm too easily embarrassed by boring normal things. When I was 5, I ran home crying from the bus stop because someone on the bus looked at me and said "hey, kid." I've improved in the last 21 years, but my awkwardness threshold is still much lower than most people's. When I'm embarrassed, or feel socially awkward, my brain reacts as if it's in mortal danger. Now, I've never been in actual mortal danger so I don't really know how I'd react to it. (I can only hope it would involve the discovery of latent super powers.) But after the most recent awkward embarrassing life moment, I realized that for some reason, my brain puts mild social awkwardness pretty high up on the mortal danger scale. What happened to my brain to make it feel so threatened at the first sign of blushing?
I'm sure part of it comes from my parents. One of my dad's most embarrassing moments was being in a restaurant when I spit up all over myself. I was a baby. I'm sure everyone in that restaurant was just horrified that a baby spit up. One of my mom's most embarrassing moments was when Carly yelled "shit!" in a department store. Carly was four. Good thing mom doesn't go shopping with the 23-year-old Carly. (Non-stop cursing. I think she has a problem.) But I'm sure most of it is just me. Some people are just born shy. I guess I should feel lucky that I live in a time and place where my brain doesn't have to worry about tigers so much. It can focus it's energy on freaking out when Jill and I get that cute waiter assigned to our table again. I just wish I had better luck training it to focus on html coding.
January 8, 2009
This picture makes me laugh every time I see it. Jill's pose in the back (orange coat, blue mittens) reminds me of Munch's The Scream. Plus I love her rolled up pants. What better way to make sure snow gets on the inside of your pants?
January 6, 2009
If true, this comes close to the stupidest thing I have ever heard. I don't have a dog, so maybe I'm wrong, but I can't think of anything more terrifying for a dog than sitting in a dark room watching other dogs and people on a screen at least ten times larger than normal.
Other reasons why this idea is stupid:
- The movie is about a dog. A really rambunctious dog, that would, I assume, be barking a lot. Barking dogs generally cause other dogs to bark. No one would be able to hear the movie.
- If people treat dogs anything like children at movies, dogs will be running loose all over the place.
- If the above link is correct and it's only seeing eye dogs that are allowed, I have to wonder why anyone who needs a seeing eye dog is going to a movie.
I bet I could go several months using only LOTR quotes as my post titles. That is my first new year's resolution. Starting now.
January 1, 2009