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My Ancestors Did WHAT?!

My Ancestors Did WHAT?!

By Contributor

RunsWithPizzaBagels620 comes from a long line of miscreants, and we're totally jealous. –Sparkitors

I was watching a commercial for ancestry.com, in which some dude with a lame tie finds out that his great-great-uncle’s roommate’s personal assistant invented the cabbage patch or something, and it got me thinking about my own heritage. When people discuss their heritage, it usually starts and ends with, “Oh, I’m British,” or “Well, I’m Turkish.”  As for my ancestry, well…imagine a big party between central and northern Europe, with much dancing, feasting, and drinking, and I'm basically the product of that. My golden retriever has bluer blood than I do. But I still figured some relative of mine must have invented peanut butter or at least formed a ninja school in Greenland or something. So I put on my detective hat, went to my parents, and asked. Here are some of the things I learned:

  • The antique shot glasses in our cupboard? They're from my great-grandma’s combination bar/bowling alley! Apparently my family could bowl with great skill and cunning, even when completely drunk. On apple juice. Which is what they served in those shot glasses, of course!
  • On the other side of my family, my great-grandpadre was the mayor of a tiny town, which was terrorized by pranksters who tipped over outhouses for entertainment (I guess cow tipping and whoopee cushions hadn’t been invented yet). Nearly every one of those chuckle buddies got caught, with the exception of the infamous "Lady in Red," who got away with the toilet terrorism every time—until, finally, she was unmasked!...as the mayor’s daughter, my grandmother. The G-Ma who served me rhubarb pie was once a derring-do delinquent of the derriere. I haven’t recovered from this revelation yet.
  • Family curses exist, and I have one! Apparently, my butt-face ancestor cheated a Gypsy (political correctness didn’t exist then, either), and the Gypsy said ominously, as dark thunderheads gathered overhead: “You butt-faced peasant! From now on, you and all of your descendants will be afflicted with bad backs!” And apparently, every direct descendant of my great-whatever has in some way injured his or her back. Skeptical? I’m not, because for the first time in my life, I feel as cool as Stanley Yelnats. I’m planning on carrying the Gypsy’s descendant, whoever they may be, up a mountain to a brook to drink, thus breaking the curse. But just in case that doesn’t work, I’m cleaning out CVS’s stock of Icy-Hot patches.

So, Sparklers, I encourage you to go ask your parental units, your aunts and uncles, and your various grands about all the weird stuff in your family histories!

Got any dark family secrets you're dying to share?

Related post: Why You Really Shouldn't Hate Your Parents

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Topics: Life
Tags: sparkler posts, family, heritage, family trees, ancestry, family traditions

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