boys with large helmets

Survival of the Sickest has so much fabulous stuff in it that nursemyra wants to share. this is what I’ve been learning about epigenetics…..

voles have a gene that determines how thick their fur is. at the time of conception, if the weather is warm the vole will be born with a lightweight coat, but if mama vole is doing the tango in winter, her baby will emerge dressed in thermals and a sleeping bag.

there’s a crustacean who produces cute little offspring in calm waters but if the environment is full of predators, she pops out babies with a large helmet and spines.


the theory is that some genes can be turned on or off depending on external influences. if a particular species of lizard smells a lizard eating snake while pregnant, junior will be born with a bigger body and longer tail than if she had just been smelling the roses.

so far experiments with epigenes has been confined to animals but nursemyra feels there could be advantages for humans sometime in the future. I mean, who doesn’t like a big helmet? and those spiny things that sex shops sell….. what if they were built in?


as for the smelling thing. let’s just say for instance that pregnantmiss happened to catch a whiff of nursemyra. not that I eat lizards, but I have been known to drool at the sight of a large helmet. now if ms pregnant’s epigenes decided nursemyra was predatory then they might give her baby embryo a bigger six pack and a longer tail.

my new role in life….. hanging around fecund women for the good of all mankind

Published in: on January 24, 2008 at 7:30 am  Comments (22)  

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22 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. If it works, you could be in line for the Nobel Piece Prize.

  2. Those are the stupidest pair of rubber gloves I’ve ever seen ……..and that sculpture of a hooded monk – ridiculous!

  3. mothers from poor estates give birth to children wearing hoodies, baseball caps and tracksuit bottoms… NM we need you around the world to help stop this

    Anyway does that chap need help finding something? ……. have him sent up here 🙂

  4. While watching “Sleek Geeks” (ABC Thursday nights) last week, I learned that, because some genes do more than one thing, the gene which determines the length of the third finger compared with the length of the index finger also has a similar effect in the male groinal area. So it is not the size of the feet you should be checking out. You should be seeing if your prospective mate’s third finger is longer than his index finger. Aint genetics grand 🙂

  5. Yeah, spread the love. You can begin spending more time around the maternity ward…

  6. archie isn’t that the same finger whose length also determines homosexuality?

    damn! us girls luck out again

  7. Bother, does this mean I have missed my true role in life?

  8. this is brilliance – and further proof that evolution is more than just a theory! those poor creationists should take note – this could be much more effective than just kneeling around praying for a bigger man-thing…

  9. Now you have me thinking about how I was conceived. I’m not about to ask my parents about the details, but looking at how I developed as a human I’m pretty sure they were either drunk, really pissed off, or there was an Atari 2600 in the room during my conception.

  10. That’s why women are keen to date the son of a lesbian mother. The boy is born with a tongue that likes the things his mother tasted.

  11. Environment influencing the expression of genes is well documented – although it sounds like this book has over-simplified the process greatly (I doubt highly there is only “a gene,” and not a series of genes, that determines vole fur thickness in variation, for example). I have already ordered my copy of the book. We shall see. *cue evil scientist music*

  12. I see you appreciate large helmets, but what are your thoughts about enormous top hats?

  13. You would totally deserve the Nobel Peace Prize for this- and I would go as far as to pry it out Capecchi, Evans and Smithies hands if they refused it to you.

  14. “Oh, what noble work is this” our friend Rev. Spurgeon would say …
    though it might be slightly out of context.

  15. hey ghosty, I’ve simplified the information in the book in order to give it blog appeal. if any of it doesn’t sound quite right, it’s probably an error in my interpretation rather than the fault of the author.

    the chapters on why we need diabetes and hypertension were pretty fascinating but I don’t think I could make them into an interesting or funny post. would love to know what you think after you read the book

  16. And people say you dont think about the future…

  17. really? people say that about moi?


  18. Those finger doodads would be great for making shadow puppets!

  19. I’m coming to your puppet show!

  20. now i am

  21. now you am coming to the puppet show too?

  22. The more the merrier?

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