Whew! We made it to Friday, hooray! Tonight is going-to-see-my-friend’s-play night. It’s at this artsy thing in one of our local towns that I’ve always wanted to go to, so that’ll be fun, right? Look at me doing things that force me to get up off the couch. It’s all very exciting and probably I deserve a medal. Dumbcat, however, is NOT PLEASED, and when I get home does things like “MEOW!” and glares at me VERY POINTEDLY because I was not home for him to squish all up to and dig his claws into. He can try that with a pillow, but the pillow doesn’t go “Ouch, Dumbcat, what the hell? Why so pointy, bub?” and then scritch his head for him.
(SIDE NOTE. In case you were not convinced Dumbcat is really dumb, the other day, he was asleep on the back of the couch and got scared by a ghost. Well, I assume it was a ghost. There was nothing scary I could see or hear. So he bolted up as if he was pinched and then decided I MUST RUN AWAY NOW. But one of his claws got caught in the afghan I keep on the back of the couch in case I get cold.
So he was all WHAT IS THIS MADNESS. Then he KEPT RUNNING. So he was dragging the afghan behind him with one little paw and trying to run and making a noise like he was caught in a snare and knocking everything off the shelves with the afghan trailing behind him and I was like, DUMBCAT STOP I CAN FIX THIS and he was like NO NO NO MOM THERE IS A GHOST SOMEWHERE GOTTA GO. Finally he stopped and just looked at the afghan SO MOURNFULLY like “this is my LIFE now, I have this THING PERMANENTLY attached to my LEG” and I was able to catch up to him and detach him and he looked at me as if I was a goddess sent to him from on high and then I laughed until my stomach was sore. I felt kind of bad about it, but I still laughed. I mean, he’s like the Three Stooges of cats, this cat. He now thinks the afghan is his enemy, and will not sleep on it. He takes care to sleep on either end of the couch, but not in the middle, where that evil, foot-snatching afghan lives. It attacked him once. It might do it again. YOU CAN NEVER TELL WITH THOSE NEFARIOUS PLOTTING-AGAINST-YOU AFGHANS.)
I have not yet told you about my adventure to get Indian food. It actually isn’t much of a story. It went very well! I did not say or do a single embarrassing thing! (Well, I don’t THINK I did. One would know, wouldn’t one think?) My food was good, and spicy, and there were no onions, garlic, or tomatoes to be found. (Oh, you probably want to know what I ate because people like to hear things like that. I had a little bit of naan that was stuffed with cheddar cheese so it was like the Indian version of Domino’s Cheesy Bread, and Chicken Vindaloo, which is, for people that don’t know about such things, pieces of very tender chicken in a spicy brown thick sauce served over this delicious kind of rice that I’ve never tried before and I’m not supposed to HAVE rice so I only had a little but MAN was that the best rice ever in the history of ever and I could have eaten 47,000 bowls of that rice alone, and it wasn’t even SEASONED rice, it was just longer and skinner than normal rice and had a really nice consistency and I loved it times a million.)
I drank a lot of water with the spiciness. We talked and laughed a lot. I almost got arrested and/or killed driving illegally on the way home (dear GPS: that U-turn you told me to make? WAS ILLEGAL. That’s a one-way street, my friend. And I was on it before I realized it. Dummy. It’s a damn good thing no cars were coming) but overall, it was great. So look! I can leave the house and socialize with people in small groups without self-destructing or self-immolating or self-whatevering. What a nice thing to realize!
I found this thing in the news, and I wanted to discuss it with you, but it’s icky. Do you want to hear about an icky thing? Because it is. Totally icky. Also, it taught me a sciency thing, so probably Andreas will be interested. And also disgusted. You ALL will be disgusted. It’s the ickiest.
OK, so in California recently, a woman was caught having all the underage sex in a hotel room with a sixteen-year-old boy. Yes, ew, these things happen, fine, whatever, gross, that’s not the ickiest part. THAT’S NOT EVEN THE ICKIEST PART. Ready?
It was her son that she’d given up at birth. AND SHE KNEW IT WAS HER SON.
Here, you can see pictures of this woman. She looks like one of those Bratz dolls. A real-life Bratz doll! Worrisome.
Apparently she gave up her child at birth, and then she contacted him fifteen years later and started a conversation with him on Facebook which led to naughty texts (as Facebook does) and then they started meeting up in hotel rooms so she could tutor him in math (that’s a euphemism) and his family found out and called the cops.
When the cops questioned her, she said she was not guilty. “But, we have this video your son made, of you playing his skin flute,” they said. (EUPHEMISM. Also, what kind of asshole kid makes a video of it? Ew, THAT IS YOUR MOM.) “No, no!” she said. “You see, it’s not my FAULT. There’s this scientific phenomenon called Genetic Sexual Attraction, where 50% of people meeting a long-lost relative are sexually attracted to them. I am a VICTIM! Of SCIENCE!”
Well, setting aside the old “he blinded me with science” defense (which, bee tee dubs, didn’t work, she was sent to jail for 4 years last week) I was all, “WHAT? This is a THING? Being sexually attracted to your relatives is a THING?”
Yep. It’s totally a thing. Science says so!
According to science, if, say, you were separated at birth from your sibling, and then you meet up with him (or her) twenty years later, you are more likely to be sexually attracted to him (or her) because:
You have facial similarities, and people (often without knowing it) seek out partners with a similar facial pattern/look
Along similar lines, we seek out partners with similar traits and likes/dislikes; scientists agree that some of these things can be hereditary, and therefore the sibling would be seen by your brain as a good mate
If you were raised by your opposite-sex parent, you “imprinted” on them; the sibling you didn’t know you had will share some similarities to that parent, and your ever-entertaining brain will turn that into sexual attraction (howdy, Oedipal and Electra complexes, nice to see you here!)
Now, if you grew UP with your sibling (or parent, or cousin, or whatever) the odds of you being attracted to them are slimmer, because of ANOTHER sciency phenomenon called The Westermarck Effect, or reverse sexual imprinting.
The person this is named after is from FINLAND, which makes me think it MUST be true because all the best scientists and Science Fellows are from/currently live in Finland.
The Westermarck Effect states that if you grow up with another child (from about ages birth to six) you become desensitized to later sexual attraction. It somehow triggers a naturally-occurring incest taboo (“incest” being only the label put on it; it doesn’t only work within families. If you are raised alongside a foster brother, for example, you most likely would see him as a sibling and mating with him later in life would also trigger the “incest incest NO NO NO” panic-alarm.)
Now, this all icked me out to the extreme (mostly the first part of this) but then I thought about it and you know what? Science is totally right here. Still ICKY, but totally right.
Of course you’re most interested in people who remind you most of yourself. Even if you’re not aware of it. You might say “opposites attract” but how often are you with someone who is your COMPLETE OPPOSITE in ALL WAYS? That would be like me dating a man who hates the arts, is a conservative politically, who isn’t at all funny and also doesn’t think I am, who’s very, very religious, who doesn’t believe in equal rights for women and same-sex couples, who hates animals, who hates the city and would never consider living anywhere but a tiny town, who likes women who are quiet, who hates reading, who hates television, books, and the internet, and who doesn’t think bathing is a super-big priority. THIS SOUNDS LIKE MY PERFECT MATE. Oh, wait, no. No, it doesn’t. I mean, sure, maybe I’d find something about him attractive. Maybe he has really nice eyes, or he’s really kind to his children, or he really likes neon Post-Its, I don’t know. But those differences would make it awful hard to continue any sort of relationship. Even if we were like, “let’s make a go of this!” and decided not to discuss them, eventually they’d come up. Things always do. You can’t sit on stuff like this forever. These are fundamental differences, you know?
I don’t know about the similar facial pattern. I have kind of a lady-face. I don’t know that I look for a man with a lady-face to complete me. But the article did say it was unconscious, so maybe my reptile brain can translate my lady-face into the male equivalent and is looking for that for me, I don’t know. As for the whole Electra complex – well, here’s the thing. I love my dad. He’s a good dad! He makes me laugh and he’s very protective and he’s smart and he’s wise. As for wanting a mate like him? Well, I’d like a mate with some of his traits. But I’d also like a mate withOUT some of his traits. Because the person I described above who was my complete opposite (other than the funny and the television and the bathing) is my dad. We are very, very different. I love him, but couldn’t live in the same house with him. I go home for a visit and we’re at each other’s throats within a few hours. So, I’m sure the Electra complex is alive and well for some people, and maybe on the same level where I don’t know about the facial patterns, I’m secretly attracted to my dad, but if I am, I’m sure as hell not aware of it. And that’s FINE with me. I DON’T WANT TO KNOW. Because SHUDDER.
Also, growing up with someone totally makes you non-attracted to them. It’s true. I grew up with a very, very attractive boy. My dad’s best friend’s kid. Blonde. Blue eyes. Smart. Funny. Great guy. Loved him right to pieces. We got along like peas AND carrots, and also maybe some…shit, I don’t know, asparagus or something. I mean, we didn’t grow up in the same house. We grew up separately. But we hung out a lot, because our parents were good friends and we were the same age (he was a month younger.) And when I got to my teens, I thought, huh, maybe I should fall in love with C. Because we know each other so well! And he is wonderful! And our parents are friends! And it would be so easy! But when I would hang out with him, there was just NOTHING THERE. It was like hanging out with my brother. No attraction. None. I could objectively see that he was a very attractive guy (still can); I could objectively see that he’d make a good mate (he did; he’s married now, with a child.) But that spark you need to want to start something just wasn’t there. Even more, not only was the spark missing, the thought of kissing him would make me both giggle and gag a little, because he was the closest person to a relative I had that wasn’t walking around sharing some of my genetic material. It seemed WRONG, somehow. So, my romance with C., which I think probably would have thrilled both of our parents, was not meant to be. I haven’t seen him in years, incidentally. And somehow, he doesn’t have Facebook. C.! How do you not have Facebook? You’re a toolbag, get a damn Facebook account already, I miss your face. No, I know he’s probably not reading this. I’m still saying it, since when has that stopped me from doing something?
So, back to the point of this post, which was the life-sized Bratz doll who is claiming that science made her ride her long-lost child like a childhood Sit-n-Spin. NO. And EW. No amount of science makes that less icky, lady. How are you in your thirties and you don’t know right from wrong? No. No, no no. Impulse control: you need to look into that. Also, NO and EW.
OK, so there’s your icky report of the day. Oh, I should mention Ken totally blogged about incest a while back. That sounds worrisome but it’s actually really interesting. You’ll like it, there’s a nice photo of Ken’s jolly face. And I just re-read the comments on Ken’s post and realized that after I commented way back then, Andreas commented and MENTIONED the Genetic Sexual Attraction thing. I didn’t even see that then. Huh. Go talk to Andreas, he knows all about this! Because he is SCIENCY and he is SMART and he is from FINLAND, not because he is GROSS. Sheesh.