Ancestry.Com: Oh, What A Mishegoss Am I!
Ancestry.com: Oh, what a mishegoss am I, indeed.
I’ve been considering sending my precious DNA (Don’t Never Ask) to Ancestry.com, or one of those other sites who want us to find out how much of a Native American, or African American we really are. We’re running around, thinking we’re Daughters of the American Revolution, driving Hondas, wearing Manolos, eating sushi. We’re missing out on venison and buffalo, the dishes of our ancestors.
Since I’ve always known I was a Mutt (Many Unknown Territory Twits), in spite of the fact I have a picture of one side of my family’s Coat of Arms that features a gargoyle and a shield, I thought it might be instructive to find out if there’s anything there that might make my way in this world smoother.
Might I be a protected class all unknowing? Might I have grounds to sue someone for discrimination? Might I just go back to eating my Cap’n Crunch and drinking my Diet Pepsi?
Being a senior citizen, an American, a woman, and a Democrat just ain’t cutting it. No one thinks I’m in danger of extinction, or that the stuff I write might one day serve as a Reminder of Years Past. They just think it’s worthy of being buried in a time capsule with no planned date for unearthing it in the distant future.
The MOTH (man of the house), thinks the whole genealogy thing is stupid. He doesn’t care where he came from, he only cares that the car works when he’s ready to go there. (He’s a mechanic.) He’s pretty sure of his parentage and that’s enough for him. And it’s more than the dog can brag about.
When I see the commercials with people dancing around in lederhosen (the typing monitor suggested “leaseholder,” which is odd), and proclaiming they’re one quarter Lakota, I want to do that, too.
I guess I could do it without paying for a membership to genealogy sites like Ancestry.com, or the lab results of my DNA, but if some lederhosen dancing group wants to see proof of my right to wear leather shorts with suspenders, I want to be ready. And I want to blow that long horn, too.
At any rate, I think everyone should be one quarter Native American, even people who’ve never been to America.
To get a reading on who your ancestors are, you have to send your spit to a lab. This spit is then compared to the spit of all the immigrants who came to America and checked into our lobby through Ellis Island. Those people were always spitting. It’s how the East River got to BE the East River. It used to be just a babbling brook.
When you’re new to America, it’s okay to spit. After you’ve read the rules, please refrain from doing it on the subway.
After you find out whether you should be wearing Lederhosen, a Tutu, or a Turban, you get to brag about being one quarter Commanche. Then you get to be grabbed by the collar of your polo shirt and thrown out of their annual festival which you tried to crash in your Prius. Go to Burning Man. That’s where us white folk go who are only one quarter Blackfoot.
The people who test the Poop in a Box should merge with the Spit in a Box people, and get all your testing done at once. They can check you out for cancer, and whether there really is a part of you somewhere–even if it’s in your intestines–that’s one quarter Paiute.
What purpose does this checking out your ancestry serve? Would I get some of that casino money after I find out I’m one quarter Apache? Enough money to feed right back into my slot machines? See, I’d keep it in the family. I promise.
What’ll probably happen is that someone is archiving this info, and when these groups demand reparation from everyone’s one quarter whatever, they’ll ask for more than a quarter from us. I think it’s better after all, to keep it on the down low.
When Martians come for a visit, they’ll contribute some Martian antenna slime. They’ll find out they’re one quarter Navajo and start wearing lederhosen and playing the slots. This is why we worked so hard to get to Mars.
10 thoughts on “Ancestry.Com: Oh, What A Mishegoss Am I!”
I could definitely picture you blowing an alphorn – REEE-CO-LAAAAAH!
I’d also love to know something more of my heritage; like you, I have at least half Jewish buried in there, along with most of Western Europe and a smidge of Native American/First Nations. COOL, Gigi!
Dave! I haven’t been on Quora all week except for a few minutes here and there. And I hadn’t seen you for a long time before that. Whassup, Jewish Brother? My dad’s side of the family is Jewish, and Mom is the shiksa from Ireland somewhere in her background.
Ricola. I just got that! Hahaha!
I sent in my spit swab several years ago and they didn’t tell me much I didn’t already know. I’m a quarter Hoosier, a quarter Hedonist, a quarter Libertarian, and a quarter Traveling Salesman. And one-quarter science fiction writer. I don’t know where that came from.
Since my wife is Irish-Russian and I’m Dutch-German-English, our daughter is a nice mix of formerly warring tribes.
Any Native American? Dunno. Granny always used to say she was going to send me back to the Indians if I didn’t behave.
Wow. They can find out all that from a spit sample? That settles it. I’m not sending mine in. What if I find out I’m a traveling salesman and never knew it? You sound like us and most Americans. You’re a MUTT.
I’m very proud of my Traveling Salesman heritage. Want to see me put on some traditional garb and do a native dance? Usually performed on a barroom table surrounded by pitchers of beer and pub wenches.
I would love to see that! I will appropriately solemn and respectful during your festival dance, Mike. I promise. No catcalls or Wolf whistles.
A distant relative from another family branch persuaded a cousin of mine to send in a spit sample as a means of checking some traveling salesman rumors concerning her grandfather. The Y chromosome would clear up the question. My cousin’s Y chromosome came back entirely dissimilar to her father’s so she suspected the traveling salesman rumors were true. She was busy writing this into her family history (in 4 volumes) when she mentioned the discrepancy to me.
I filled her in on the traveling salesman rumor. They may not or may not pertain to her father, but they do pertain to my cousin in question. The poor lady was quite unhappy because she was now back to square one and all those blanks being filled in were now blank again.
DNA (Do Not Assume): open that Pandora’s Box at your own risk.
Do Not Assume. Excellent! And Darn Noble Advice, too. Thanks, Farmal! It’s better when families all look exactly alike, like the Osmonds. I guess. Maybe that brings up other uncomfortable questions….
Oh, it was blindingly obvious from the get go. I have a photo of all the family cousins already born at the time lined up in a row on the porch. Side by side, squinting into the sun, holding up bunny ear fingers behind each other’s heads here and there. From left to right we have hairwise: Blonde, Blonde, Blonde, Blonde, Blonde, Blonde, Blonde, Blonde, Blonde, Black, Blonde, Blonde, Blonde, Blonde.
Extra credit if you can point to the traveling salesman father suspect with funny DNA.
I can do it! I am an expert at “One of these things is not like the others, one of these things isn’t the SAME!” Who says adults can’t use Sesame Street?