Monday, June 05, 2006

Did Your Ancestral-Great-Grandmother Get Bit On The Tail?

For my Ph.D. studies, probably to begin in the Next Life, because I don't have the time or energy in this one, I want to trace back people's ancestry based on what they are afraid of. I think I can locate each person's lineage by that gene, or chromosome, named "fear of something."

Since most of us, and all other primates, are afraid of snakes, we probably come from an area of the world where they are dangerous and, to survive, we had to develop an instinctual fear of all, poisonous or not. "Can't take a chance," our genetic producers said. "Let's make a marker for them." Those who are not afraid may come from a line of people who developed in another area where snakes are not a problem and, so, they did not develop this characteristic.

Some people are petrified of spiders. Where would poisonous spiders hang out in our earliest days? Maybe that's where these folks' ancestors are from and where that gene or chromosome developed. I've no fear of them at all, so my umpteen-great-grandparents must have come from a safe-spider area. Same goes for mice and anything else you can name.

I don't think these fears of ours are irrational. Your fear of spiders may seem silly to me, but it's not to you and that may be because your ancestrally-great-grandmother got real sick due to a spider bite on her tail. She learned a lesson and her brain said, "Note to self: Pass on a beware-of-spiders gene."


Blogger Dakiwiboid said...

Hi, Tom! First time I've seen this blog. It looks nice.

June 06, 2006 7:53 PM  
Blogger Cold Josh Vail said...

Was thinking about this. You know, I know many farm kids and none of them are afraid of snakes and farmers are great places for finding them. Could be that they grew up with them so it is normal to find one curled up or getting sunned alongside or on top of your wood pile.

My Mom was faithfully afraid of snakes. Faithfully means that in her 87 years she was never converted over to become a petter of reptiles. Like the loss of hair thing, I stem from my maternal side. Thing is, we have a fair share of them and I have become tolerant, but still yet wary. But like my Mom, the snake population will not hinder my snoopings in the back yard or lot.

June 09, 2006 6:53 AM  

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