Discovering my ancestry despite being a cowardly cheapskate

Have you heard about the service called in which you submit a sample of your saliva with a credit card number and get a full report of your genetic background?

When I heard the TV commercial I did a double helix, then immediately went nucleotide, shrieking, “Wow! Who would want to delve that deeply into their cellular origins?”

As soon as I said it, I realized that even though I don’t have the courage or the extra cash to explore my biology, it doesn’t mean other people with too much money and a touch of narcissism shouldn’t drill into their complex sequences.

I have to admit I was intrigued enough to imagine what my sample would reveal. Here are the results of my unscientific analysis.

Photo courtesy Pixabay, edits by author

Potato dirt: Growing up on an Aroostook County potato farm caused some potato dirt to mingle with my genetic code. This explains why I have an affinity for dust bunnies and need a certain amount of filth to accumulate before I reach for the vacuum cleaner.

Independence: I don’t like stereotypes so I envision my test tube flinging itself to the floor shattering the possibility of attaching a label.

Funny bone: When staring at my genes instead of a double helix, my chromosomes would form a funny bone, since seeing the comedic side of life is solidly planted in my DNA.

Crystals: I’m not referring to new age healing crystals. Living in cold temperatures for a lifetime, I’ve seen more below zero days than an arctic explorer, and since every year it becomes more difficult for me to warm up, I can only conjecture that some of my cells have turned into ice crystals.

Words: I love words, what they convey, what they teach, and how they impact my mind and emotions. I suspect at the core of my cell nucleus is a thesaurus and tiny books with opposite charges keeping my nucleic acids from unraveling.

Coffee: If scientists peered into my ribosomal activity they would discover the fuel that burns calories is caffeine.

Multiple heritages: I suppose this is why most people spring for this sort of test, to determine the many nationalities that came together to make them who they are. I don’t need a chemistry set to figure this out. Irish immigrants landed in North America, linked up with French Canadians, eventually moved to Maine and mingled with Micmac Native Americans creating my motley crew of ancestors who could have won the reality show Survivor.

Heartiness gene: The rumor is my paternal grandfather born in Canada was premature, and his first cradle was a shoebox. Born before NICUs and perinatologists, he survived to father 14 children. My dad was the eldest and lived to age 94.

Appetite: My molecules eat like the Gilmore Girls. Unfortunately, instead of consuming a few bites before moving to the next scene, I finish everything on my plate making my ribosomes eligible for a gastric bypass.

Faith: I am confident there is light and life on the path our chromosomes travel. Spoiler alert: The good guys win in the end.

What about you? What makes you uniquely you and how did you discover it?


©2017, Stevens. All rights reserved.

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

65 thoughts on “Discovering my ancestry despite being a cowardly cheapskate

  1. I think my sister had one done ‘spose I should have paid attention to what her results were. But I’m guessing I’m still 99% procrastinator 1% caveman…

  2. My family is Italian, and I don’t know my dad, and since I know where exactly in Italy my maternal family comes from (both sides), when I received my DNA kit from Ancestry and it told me I was 63% Italian/Mediterranean and some mish-mosh of muggle for the rest, I kindly ignored it.

  3. Haha really funny post! I’ve only ever done the free stuff when it comes to ancestry, but i got a 23 and Me for Christmas, so what the hell. I just find it interesting to see what has helped make me the weird goon I am today. Loving the blog, btw!

  4. I think the subject of tracing ancestry & family history is really interesting. I know bits and pieces of my family tree. My dad was the youngest of 12 and only one child remains now – my uncle who is 80 & is the 2nd youngest. My nan was born in 1894 – I was a little bit scared of her as a small child as she was very Victorian – I can remember her using a mangle washing her clothes even in the 1970s! She died in 1981 – I wished I had asked her more about life in Victorian London though. 😊

    • You never feel like you’ve gotten enough history from those who lived generations before us, do you? I wish I had written down more information from my grandparents and parents. Your nan sounds fascinating! What is a mangle?

  5. I just bought the hubs an ancestry DNA kit and am excited to see his results. I do think it’s fascinating.

    I defiantly think that our biology means very little when determining our unique selves though!

    • I’m holding off on spending the money but my sister got a kit for Christmas. So I’ll see how hers turns out. I think it is funny how we try to minimize our differences, and at the same time we are eager to determine our unique biology. Which may not be all that unique. LOL!

  6. That’s a funny take on DNA! luckily, we don’t have such service here in India….And I don’t have to find out about my ancestry!

  7. Hi Molly, I love your humor and your personal reflections on your DNA! We just purchased a DNA check for my Mom from the “23 and Me” website, so it will be very interesting to find out what it concludes. Thank you so much for sharing with us at the #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty! Shared!

    • Thank you, Teresa. So glad you visited my blog and enjoyed my humor. I hope your mother’s analysis doesn’t result in any skeletons emerging from the closet. But then I think it might be like fortune tellers. They only reveal the good stuff, right? Glad to meet you at the #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty.

  8. I love this! Great post. My mom and sister did the DNA testing on the “23 and Me” website. They found out some interesting and surprising ancestral connections. Thank you for linking up at #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty. I’m sharing your link on social media.
    Carol (“Mimi”) from Home with Mimi

    • Thank you for reading, commenting and sharing my post, Carol. It was a fun one to write. I’m glad the money was worth it for your mom and sister. I can see why people would spring for the analysis. Great to meet you at the grandmother’s link party!

  9. Haha, now that’s funny!!

    My Grandfather actually has a mysterious past that we know very little about and through genealogy and DNA testing my niece actually found proof that he was born with a different name. That name has a history for a number of years and then it vanishes just when the name we knew him by appears in history! It’s fascinating!!

    Thank you for likning up at ‪#BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty‬

    • Wow! Your grandfather had quite a past. Have you figured out why he changed his name? If that was my family it would likely be to avoid jail from being a horse thief! Thanks for stopping by from the Grandmother’s Link Up!

  10. I enjoyed the “unscientific” list of your genetic makeup. And just think, your analysis was free! (And just possibly more accurate than the one you could have paid for.)

    I found your post at #House BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty.


    • I think my analysis was more accurate than the boring scientific one, Jude, for sure. Thanks for stopping by. Have enjoyed participating in the #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty. Always like to connect with new writing friends!

  11. Thanks for the good laugh. I once wrote an article about what my daughters were made of–light on the sugar and heavy on spice! Thanks for linking up at #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty.


    • Thanks for stopping by and sharing a laugh with me, Christie. You get where I’m coming from since you’ve already done a genetic analysis of your offspring. Hmmm….I may have to do that too for a future essay.

  12. My cousins are right into ancestry Molly and even have done their DNA test. It was quite interesting actually. Thanks for sharing with us at #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty. Have a great week and I’ve shared on social media.

    • Nice to connect with you as always, Sue. My sister, Linda, did a lot of genealogy so I never thought I needed to pay to have a DNA analysis. It is interesting to explore our ancestors and where we came from. Love to have you visit, my friend! Have had a nice time at the #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty.

  13. I have never checked into this because I have always assumed it would uber expensive. Thanks for adding the humor. Thank you for linking up at #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty. I’m sharing your link on social media.

    • Thank you Clarissa. I didn’t know how much it cost until people started commenting on my post – apparently $100 is the going rate. Glad I could do it for free! Thanks for sharing my post at #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty.

  14. When I see those commercials I wonder – is this for real OR what are they going to do with my spit 🙂 I just love your humor! Thank you Molly for linking up at the #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty. I shared this post.

    • Thanks for sharing Grammy Dee and for leaving a comment. It was fun to find the grandmother’s link up party and connect with other blogging grandma’s. I hope you’ll be back to share a laugh with me.

  15. Love this, Molly! I have been told that I’m Irish my whole life…but after visiting Ireland, and seeing the lithe women I was surrounded with, I do not need a test to tell me I’m not Irish…I’m more Scottish…or Viking…or maybe Mastiff.

    • Hahahaha! You make me laugh, Sheri. I love that you are from sturdy stock. I think the ancestor’s photo I have who looks like a leprechaun and my short stature are proof enough of my Irish ancestry! How fun that you went to Ireland. I want to go some day, too.

  16. This was very funny and glad you did not spend the $$! y hubby’s sis paid for those spit tests for all her siblings. My hubby’s twin brother took it but she keeps nagging my hubby to take the test. Just look at his identical twin’s results, right?? No telling what would pop out, LOL!

  17. Molly! You’ve done it again! You’ve managed to trigger that inadvertent, laugh-out-loud, in the most inopportune location possible, laugh. You little devil!

  18. I’d spring for the hundred bucks if any of the commercially available tests didn’t lump all “Naive Americans” into one category. I do know that I have native South American ancestry but that’s not the same as native North Americans and Caribbeans. By the way, we must share the coffee gene!

    • I didn’t know they lumped all the native Americans I one group, Linda. This makes me even happier I didn’t spend the money. That means I had more money to buy coffee. 😉 Thanks for stopping by to visit and leaving a comment.

    • I’m glad you agree with my reservations about spending money on a gob of spit, Sharon. I can waste money on a lot of things I’d like better than that, like a nice dinner out to feed my DNA. Those little double helixes are always hungry. 😉

  19. Oh, Molly! You are the gem in our family – whatever the genetics! However, one tiny correction – Grampy was able to “rise to the occasion” and sire 14, not 13, progeny; and yes, Dad was still the oldest. Love, love, love this piece!!! Don’t stop writing. You’re getting better with age! Oops! Sorry to point out the “age” thing!! Love you, little sister!!??

    • I can’t believe I deprived Grampie of one of his offspring. I’m making the correction right now. Glad you enjoyed the piece, sister and remember – you’ll always be older than me! But let’s keep our brains young, okay?

I love comments. Just type in the box below to make me happy, okay?