Monday, April 29, 2013

I'm an Afro-Saudi-Indian-Bulgar-Porco-American

Months ago, I enrolled in the National Geographic Genome Project. It's a continuing science project that involves crowdsourcing DNA to get a better map of human evolution. It's intelligent design without any of the sky king fairy tales.

I received the testing kit. Swabbed my inner cheeks. And carefully captured the mini-particles of me in a hermetically sealed test tube.

Yesterday, after what must have been some exhaustive testing, I received my results. To say I was surprised would be an understatement.

I thought that because my mother was born in Scotland and because my father was first generation American, descended from gruel-eating, fashion-challenged shtetl people in Poland and Russia, that my genetic makeup would be more northerly.

I was wrong.

While Northern European is sizably represented, as you can see from the screen grab, my roots are much closer to the warm seas of the Mediterranean. In fact, my profile is almost identical to those people identified as Bulgarian. This was quite a shock to me.

I didn't know exactly where Bulgaria was on a map. I mean, I had some idea. If Bulgaria were a property on the Monopoly Board it would be near the cheap stuff, like the Baltics. It would be purple or blue or magenta. In other words, just slightly more valuable than a Utility or the Railroads. But I had no idea it was in close proximity to Turkey and Albania.

My secondary reference population was no less surprising. It matched up with people from Greece. This goes a long way to explain my aquiline nose, my swarthy olive complexion, and my fondness for breaking plates; as a short order cook I threw many ceramic plates at waitresses who had messed up the order.

Though I suspect that behavior was learned and not hereditary.

Most interesting however, is the remaining 20%, which stems from Southwest Asia. These include the countries of Iraq, Iran, India and Tajikistan, which if I'm not mistaken, is where Hitler once contemplated sending all the Jews.

The astute reader will notice that the percentages of my makeup 46%, 31% and 20%, do not add up to 100. The good people at National Geographic cannot account for this anomaly. I can.

I'm convinced the remaining 4% is of the Hystricidae variety, otherwise known as the North American porcupine.

That would account for the errant thick black hairs sprouting from my ears, my shoulders and that small patch of real estate just above my ass.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Neanderthal percentage?