April 20th, 2008

The Muddle of Monozygotic Moms

They're trying to figure out who all those kids are descended from at the Yearning For Zion (YFZ) Ranch.
Families that include half brothers and sisters, and those that include reportedly married first cousins, can be particularly challenging to unravel. Dr. Arthur Beaudet, chairman of the Department of Molecular and Human Genetics at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, said DNA testing can easily deal with these types of complexities.
Sure, those are easy. It's identical twins that DNA flops on.  Do you think any of the moms could have been identical twins?
Justice Doyle is one of the few townspeople ever allowed into one of the buildings at the YFZ ranch. One of Jeffs' wives, Barbara, died there of breast cancer in July 2004. Doyle had to issue the death certificate. "Her twin sister was with her," he said. From his own research on the sect, he learned that Jeffs likes to marry twins because they're compatible.
The leader liked twins.  Did he care which kind?
Would he marry all twins he happened to find?

If he favored identical over fraternal,
maternal uncertainty could be eternal.

DNA, alas, won't show
which goes with which.  But the moms will still know.

Indiana - Home To Oldest Human "On Planet"

The front page of Yahoo featured this sub-head today:
Edna Parker, the oldest human on the planet, celebrates her birthday in Indiana.
I wondered if there were older people off-planet.  Maybe low-gravity moon colonies were extending longevity?  But when I clicked on the story itself there was no mention of the "planet" angle.

Either "on the planet" is a trendy hype-phrase beloved by teaser headline writers... or else the government is trying to suppress news of their lunar colony project.

On the moon they all live to 120,
which seems like plenty.

Somehow the marigolds-on-the-moon project leaked out this week.  So at least they're keeping it pretty up there.

Lacking the bucks for a trip to the moon,
I'm moving to Indiana real soon.

Shock and Relief

We went to a concert tonight and they announced that they had a specially commissioned new work to play.

I'm in favor of new work but for some reason I never seem to like the new works they play at most concerts.  So imagine my shock and relief when I liked the new piece, American Rhapsody, by Peter Boyer.

The secret, as it turns out, is that Boyer is a professional film and TV composer.  So he's willing to write in what lots of critics take to be an old-fashioned idiom.

I like the old stuff, but, you see
the current idiom's Greek to me.