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Evolved, sort of
I don’t know how I made it this far. I was watching a program about early man and how they think he evolved. You’ve got your Neanderthal, brutish and muscular, but not too bright. He’s the one walking around with the big club that he pounds on things with. He did not make this, he found it. He survives using animal cunning and muscle and some fire that he also found lying about.
Then along came Cro-Magnon, kind of long and lanky; the brainy one. He is not so muscular, but strong enough. He invents things and can actually make fire. He is so smart that he takes over the territory. It is also believed that there was a certain amount of inter-breeding. This is what gives us those big linemen in pro football.
If you look around you can identify people with a strong Neanderthal flavor. Many of them are body builders. They got a kind of head start so are not so much building a body as they are toning what they’ve already got. The Magnons, finding that their possibilities in football were limited, invented basketball where long and lanky is what carries the day. Unfortunately, I am not quite long or lanky enough.
So maybe you are thinking that I got some of that Neanderthal strength to compensate. Well, I got shafted in that department, too. I never could do a decent number of pushups, the criteria by which we seem to measure manliness. I have really strong legs, though. Probably my ancestors were good at running, so this is how we managed to survive dinosaurs and Neanderthals with clubs. It was probably my people that invented racing.
Now some have the best of both. Some do not. I am just bright enough to make myself miserable. For instance, I can figure out that the lawn mower needs a new belt, but not how to disassemble and reassemble it without leftover parts. Rather than sitting around on the weekend, enjoying a nice violent sporting event while drinking a couple of brewskis, I sit in a dark corner contemplating my shortcomings.
I did not even catch a break in the memory department, an attribute for storing information for future use, an important survival tool. Oh, sure, I can remember my way home, but not the esoteric stuff that they teach in school so you can get that good job. I do get a lot of use out of the same book, though. I can read it again and again and it always seems new.
Maybe I had better get a lamp in here if I am going to spend so much time writing in this corner.
Bill Abrams resides, and contemplates his genetic makeup, in Pine Plains.