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Odd characteristics.

  1. Oct 3, 2003 #1
    The idea for this thread comes from an experience that I had recently. A friend of mine, who refuses to accept evolution, constantly presents me with challenges to the theory.

    His most recent attack was the opposable thumb. He simply couldn't see how monkeys and apes have opposable thumbs while lemurs don't (not even really sure about this part, but it's none too relevant).

    I was in the unusual position to give a demonstration of the evolution of odd digits...I have double-jointed fingers. I asked him how - if it is impossible for a member of a species to inherit an odd characteristic of the hand digits (such as opposable thumbs) - it is that I have inherited (from my father) the ability bend all of my fingers backward on the middle joint and to bend them forward on the top joint (along with the ability to "pop" out the base knuckle of my thumb).

    And so I'm wondering, what odd characteristics has current evolution bestowed upon the members here at the PFs?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 3, 2003 #2
    Oh, btw, I don't mind if your strange ability/characteristic is a result of training yourself or of breaking something (I hope it's not this one, for your sake, but it's still welcome :smile:), but I am particularly interested in those of you who were born with an odd characteristic.

    btw, as to learned characterstics, I can now move either eyebrow or either ear, independently or along with the other.
  4. Oct 3, 2003 #3


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    All children between the ages of 1 and 4 (other than my own)immediately scream in fear the first time they see me.

  5. Oct 3, 2003 #4


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    Now why is that Njorl?

    No odd characteristics here, I go up in the masses. But you sound pretty scary, Mentat :)
  6. Oct 3, 2003 #5
    I have the uncanny ability to change a red stoplight green just by staring at it.

    I can also make change for a dollar.

    (I'm sorry, the opportunity was present and I couldn't help meself)
  7. Oct 3, 2003 #6

    Ivan Seeking

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    I can bend my left thumb all the way back and touch my wrist with the tip; not under, back over the top and parallel to the arm!. I'm not double jointed either. It actually hurts a bit; now more than when I was younger, but I have never actually injured my finger doing this. When I was twelve I could send any girl into fits by with this little stretch. I was really, really cool.

    Oh yes, I loved to flip my eyelids inside out and leave them that way. This was also really cool. It seemed [at twelve] that most people could not do this...maybe they were just afraid to try.

    I don't know if these are unique genetic oddities or not.
  8. Oct 4, 2003 #7


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    Dearly Missed

    The ability to curl your tongue into a tube is inherited. I have it and so did my mother and my children. That reminds me, I should check on my granddaughter. Is it dominant or recessive?
  9. Oct 4, 2003 #8


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    Wait till she gets infected with an antibiotic-resistant strain of something, hopefully not too nasty. Ask her then how it came to be that she's sick, and the antibiotics which cured her older siblings or parents, only ~10 years ago don't work on her any more.
  10. Oct 4, 2003 #9
    Thanks for that one. ;) I'll be sure to use it soon.

    Oh, and I can wiggle my nose. >.<
  11. Oct 4, 2003 #10
  12. Oct 4, 2003 #11
    I forgot to include that I can:

    Wiggle my nostrils; bend either of my thumbs under the knuckle of the corresponding index finger, and it'll stay there (doesn't hurt, but it feels numb afterward); roll my tongue into a tube (selfadjoint's post reminded me to mention that one); cross either eye (but not both at the same time, for some reason (actually, the real trick is uncrossing my eyes, since I was born with crossed eyes and have to wear glasses to keep them straight); roll my eyes up so that you can only see the white; there's probably a couple others, but I think I've succeeded in letting people now how "scary" I really am .
  13. Oct 4, 2003 #12
    Very good point, Nereid.
  14. Oct 4, 2003 #13

    Do you have any particularly strange characteristics?
  15. Oct 6, 2003 #14
    Any more mutants out there?
  16. Oct 9, 2003 #15
    Human Cobra

    At some point in my childhood i found out that if I grabbed a pinch of skin on either side of my neck and pulled it stretched out like a pointy cobra neck. I showed it to my sisters who were both freaked and amused. I showed it to me best friend and his sisters who were equally half shocked and half amused. For a while after that I was urged to demonstrate this talent at every opportunity.

    As far as your friend goes the best evidence against creationism I know of is the inexplicably asymetrical flounder, and its cousins, the halibut, the sole, etc. These clearly have their origin in some mutation that nevertheless gave them some fantastic advantages, because they are a thriving population: the flatfish!

  17. Oct 9, 2003 #16


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    Re: Human Cobra

    Top o' the mornin' to ya then!
  18. Oct 9, 2003 #17
    Re: Re: Human Cobra

    An' ta saem ta you, sir!
    -Zoobie Malone
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