Tuesday, August 28, 2007

turn ons

Do you know what turns me on? A strapping thirty-four-year-old, former child prodigy, grown up to be geneticist, anthropologist, and master mind of National Geographic's Genographic Project.


Even though we both went to the University of Texas, and I've got a year on him, he graduated 6 years ahead of me. If I'd only known I would have studied harder and not dropped Honors Physics my senior year in high school to pursue a life of leisure.

Dr. Spencer is captivated by a subject fascinating to all of us--where we come from--and he's developed a way for us all to participate in his Genographic map making with a kit that you can send off for. The kit contains a tool, a cotton swab with which to swab the insides of your cheeks in order to get all the little DNA bits to send to the lab. After several weeks go by, you receive a report that tells the story of either your maternal or paternal ancestry (not both; men have to choose, and women have to go with the maternal strain of lineage since we are without a Y chromosome).

Dr. Spencer cautions that the project does not give percentage break downs of ethnic make-up or pinpoint a family crest. His research reveals what the project calls, "deep ancestry along a single line of direct descent," tracing your path backwards to the beginning.

It looks something like this.

There's a lot more to it than just lines and arrows on a map. I dig. To read more, click here.

1 comment:

Maryam in Marrakesh said...

Darling Texan, I can understand your being besotted. I think your only solution is to wear something green and fetching to match those chairs (once you find them) and invite him over. And also, when talking to him, doodle (seemingly absentmindedly) complex mathematical equations and squiqqles of artic tundra.