Nerd Alert!

Ahem…I have an announcement to make. Just so we’re clear and everyone knows…I am officially a NERD. It’s true. I know, surprise surprise, tell us something we didn’t already know right?

I came upon this realization over the past week when one of our favorite friends came to dfw for a visit. Daniel Moffatt, The Moff Man, Dan the Man, Moff the Proph, Ole Danny Boy, the list goes on I’m sure. Daniel and his lovely friend Dawn stopped by Midlothian to grace us with their presence this past week. It’s always a good time when you throw Daniel in the mix and this visit was no exception.

It all started last Tuesday night when I met up with Dan, Dawn and Chad for dinner.  We were talking about checking out an antique store in Deep Ellum and discussing how much we liked antiques and the history of old things etc… I know, riveting conversations for 20 somethings (gotta say it while there’s still time). I happened to mention this podcast that I had been listening to on the way to dinner.  Story goes like this…in 1898 these archeologists from Oxford had discovered an old trash dump in Egypt. Pretty much the mother load of undisturbed trash somewhere around 10 centuries old.  In the dump they had uncovered pieces of papyrus with lost sayings of Jesus that hadn’t been seen, heard, or read in over 2,000 years. They also found a portion of scripture that happens to be the oldest known copy of the text in Revelation 13.

13:16-18 “He also forced everyone, small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead, so that no one could buy or sell unless he had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of his name. This calls for wisdom. If anyone has insight, let him calculate the number of the beast, for it is man’s number. His number is 666.”

As we all know, the traditional number of the beast is 666. On this papyrus, they found the Greek letters Chi Iota Stigma, which actually reads 616. hmmmm? I’m wondering how many people are gonna have to touch up their tattoos?

What gets me, is that 107 years later, people are still devoting their entire lives to this. So much time, money and talents spent deciphering these teeny tiny fragments of history in order to make sense of things and to preserve it. Which reminds me of what we were watching on t.v. this morning pertaining to the Terracotta Army that was uncovered in China. Double nerd whammy! I wasn’t even planning on bringing that one up. It’s crazy to me though how much time and energy people put into such tedious and most of the time unrewarding work for the benefit of history. You’ve really gotta love it. So yes, that was a tangent. Let’s move on.

Day 2, we were making breakfast. Sausage. Egg. Cheese. Tomato. All on a biscuit add some fresh honey. Yes, be jealous.  For some reason we were talking about how Dawn loves biology and animals, so I decided this would be a good time for me to bestow my knowledge of dolphin sleeping habits. The fact that in order for dolphins to sleep, they shut off half of their brains at a time so that they can continue to watch for predators as well as come to the surface to breathe which would make sense so that they don’t drown. This is called logging, in this state a dolphin resembles a log floating on the surface of the water. I certainly didn’t learn this little biology lesson by watching “Flipper,” although that show was pretty entertaining when I was 10. Did I mention that I learned this from a podcast that I listen to? Yep, podcast reference #2.

So later in the week, our conversation somehow got onto the topic of DNA. Don’t ask me how, because I’m really racking my brain trying to remember what we were talking about and your guess is as good as mine at this point, but it went something like this… Hey, did you guys know that there are geneticists who can take a blood sample from a male, study the DNA molecules and trace your ancestory? Only men have the Y chromosome, so like a surname, the Y chromosome is passed down from father to son. An exact copy of the chromosome is given to the next generation. However, every once in a while there is a spontaneous random mutation to that Y chromosome. This mutation is then copied from father to son to grandson and so on. These mutations serve as unique markers for tracking ancestory. There was a group of geneticists that spent 10 years collecting blood from 16 different populations that live within and on the borders of the former enormous Mongol Empire. When they studied the DNA, they made a startling discovery. The majority of the blood they sampled showed the same mutated Y chromosome. How could this be? They traced the mutation back at least 1000 years, compared it with the history of the region did some calculations and badabing badaboom, their explanation…Genghis Khan. Genghis Khan and his sons, controlled the largest land empire ever seen in the history of the human race. This huge conquered expanse extended from the Pacific Ocean coast of China right across Asia to Iran and the Adriatic Sea. I don’t think I need to go into explanation about Genghis Khan and his actions, but some recent research tells us that in the lands conquered by Genghis Khan, 8% of the people are his direct descendants. In fact, world-wide, one in every 200 men is related to the mighty Khan – which works out to about 16 million men. 16 million!! Thus making him the most successful biological father in history. Can you guess where I may have heard this information? If you guessed while standing in line trying to decide what ingredients to put into my bowl at Genghis Grill, then sorry wrong answer. If you guessed from this podcast I listen to, then you’re catching on. This brings our total to 3 podcast ramblings.

Wednesday afternoon I had to take a little nap. I had 3 hours of sleep the night before because for some I reason I stay up way too late (like right now) and then I got a phone call in the morning that  someones car wouldn’t start  so I had to go in to work at 6:45am…again. So while I was napping before I had to go back to work for my original shift, the rest of the crew decided they were going to do P90X in the living room. SUPER LOUD. There must be a karate section or something, because I awoke to sounds of “hi-yah!” exploding from the 0ther room. Then Tony Horton the instructor started going on and on about how he wasn’t going to get old, he was going to look young forever, he wasn’t going to get fat, he was going to be healthy and fit forever and ever and ever and ever…ok, maybe I was a little tired and cranky, but I stumbled from my room to the bathroom and mumbled…everyone’s gonna die ya know! I didn’t tell them where my thought process came from, but I had listened to this story on this podcast that I listen to sometimes about a 90 yr old man who was in great physical and mental shape even at his old age. He was jumping on a trampoline in the clip they played, talking about how he exercised all his life and that his father lived to be 103 so he planned on living at least to 100. Two years later he’s on his death bed dying a slow and painful death. Don’t get me wrong, I think exercise and being healthy is really important, it was just the attitude behind his comments about being immortal or staying young forever that were really getting on my nerves. We’re all gonna die someday ya know, even Tony Horton’s body is gonna give out on him.  Old age is going creep in, his muscles are going to shrivel up, it happens to the best of us, it’s inevitable.  So I don’t think that one actually counts as mentioning the podcast, but I was still thinking about it so  it does count as more proof.

Friday, I started to reminisce about our road trip from Oregon to Michigan and quickly decided not to remember my favorite memories for fear that they would be altered by remembering them. The podcast about memory throws around the idea of being able to erase a memory as someone or something (such as rats) are remembering it. They also go on to say that every time we bring to remembrance a memory our mind alters it somewhat so it is not a true replication of what we are actually trying to remember. They say that the most true and vivid memories would be those locked in the mind of someone with amnesia. Seems like a shame to me. Daniel and I then were curious about how a memory could be considered a memory until someone actually recalls it, therefore how would an amnesia patient even have memories if they can’t remember them? I don’t know, kinda confusing so we listened to this podcast that I listen to, the one about memory on our way to a birthday party in Fort Worth.

On our way home from the party, we listened to the podcast about the walls of Jericho. This led to me teaching Dan how to play the song “Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho” on the piano. Sunday I got to again share my wealth of knowledge when Chad mentioned the word “Jericho,” I was sure to let everyone know that it would not in fact be possible for the Israelites to blow down the walls of Jericho with trumpets without it being an act of God. (Obviously that’s the point of the story). It would take somewhere around 40,000 trumpets or shofars blowing at the same focused location on the wall which would be impossible, because the power of the blast would literally blow the heads off of the people in the front rows.

So I successfully brought up this podcast that I listen to at least 5 err..6 times this week (Forgot I brought up the Kirtland Warbler story about Mio Michigan somewhere along the way). By the end of the week I came to the conclusion that I am undoubtedly a big fat nerd. I can’t help it, I love RadioLab!!! I bet if you listened to it, you would love it too.  So here’s a link if you want to check it out.

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One thought on “Nerd Alert!

  1. […] to Alpena, Michigan to visit our good friend Daniel (I’ve mentioned him a few times before when he came to Texas to visit us and again when he helped celebrate my birthday). While we were there he took us to […]

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