Friday, February 8, 2008

Don't It Make My Brown Eyes Blue

I like to read USA Today because it's written at a pre-school level. All the news I can't comprehend elsewhere suddenly becomes clear when the information is accompanied by color graphics and kicky pie charts.

So imagine how moronic I felt when a recent USA Today science article about blue eyes made my brown eyes glaze over.
If you have blue eyes, you may be related to every other blue-eyed person in the world.

Researchers in Denmark have found that every person with blue eyes descends from just one "founder," an ancestor whose genes mutated 6,000 to 10,000 years ago. Before then, everyone had brown eyes.
What follows is several paragraphs filled with words like "mutation", "recession" and "sequences." I don't understand any of it but one particular quote from University of Copenhagen geneticist Klaus Kjaer, gave me pause.
Because the research shows that all blue-eyed people are related, Kjaer notes it's "interesting" that his blue-eyed wife is therefore related to Brad Pitt.
So does that mean my blue-eyed husband is related to my blue-eyed brother? Doesn't that sound a little sick?

I don't want my husband and my brother to be genetically linked. Until now, I thought the only genetic mutation they shared was maleness.

But where does this leave me? Did I marry my brother? Should I have married my real brother? Am I related to either one of them?

And why haven't they introduced me to Brad Pitt?

Life was easier when I was blond. At least it was an excuse to be stupid.


Simon Jester said...

Wow this is great! Say hi to cousin Brian for me.
(It's always nice to have a big family.)

Traci Skene said...

My blue-eyed brother said he felt like a hillbilly when he realized he was related to his blue-eyed wife. He's even more horrified to share any sort of genetic connection with his blue-eyed mother-in-law. I think this story ruined his day.