Chick Wit: This just may be too much information

Posted: December 02, 2013

Information is like turkey and stuffing.

It's hard to tell when you've had enough.

And the more you get, the more you want.

At least that's how I feel. I'm bad at portion control, whether it's Thanksgiving dinner or information.

Obviously, I don't believe there's such a thing as too much information. If you read this column, you know about my bunions, fleas, cellulite, and Mother Mary.

One of these is to be avoided at all costs.

Not the one you think.

FYI, I love information. I always want more. When I look back at my life, I know the things I wouldn't have done if I'd had more information. I'm talking Thing One, Thing Two, and Amway products.

But it turns out you can get more information than ever before, and I am giving thanks.

Because I heard about this kit you can buy, test yourself, and find out about your DNA.

I went to the website to learn about it, astounded. You order the kit, test your saliva, and send it back to the company.

Yes, you mail them your spit.

I'm wondering if I can mail them my cellulite, too.

Plus a few fleas.

Anyway, I am excited about this, and I ordered one for Daughter Francesca and one for me.

Merry Christmas, Francesca!

I don't know if Francesca wants a DNA kit for Christmas. If she doesn't, I'll take the test twice. Maybe my score will improve, like the SATs.

I didn't get a DNA kit for Mother Mary. I can find out what's in her DNA by looking in the mirror.

Also, can you imagine asking Mother Mary for a saliva sample?

"Here!" she'd say, and spit in my face.

So why do I want to do this? The test can let you know tons of things about yourself. For example, if you're a carrier of 53 different diseases, including maple syrup urine disease.

I bet you didn't even know that existed.

Neither did I.

Maybe Mrs. Butterworth had it.

I'm not sure what maple syrup urine disease is, but I'm guessing it's a disease that makes your urine look like maple syrup.

In that case, my medical advice would be simple.

Don't pee on your pancakes.

It may look right, but it won't taste right.

The test also lets you know if you're at risk for 122 diseases, including back pain.

OK, maybe I already know that one.

The test can determine 60 of my genetic traits, but I already know a lot of those, too. For example:

Eye color: Bloodshot Blue.

Hair color: Fake.

Height: Stumpy.

Breast morphology: Presently Morphing Due to Gravity and Unfairness of Life in General.

Memory: Huh?

Earwax type: Johnson's.

Eating behavior: Rapid and Unattractive.

Food preference: Yes.

Caffeine consumption: Dunkin' Donuts.

Odor detection: How dare you.

Pain response. Ouchy.

Muscle performance: Slack and Wasting.

Response to exercise: Procrastination.

Response to diet: Not Applicable.

The test can even tell you whether you're a carrier or at risk of a disease based on whether you originate from Europe, East Asia, or Africa. Sadly, there is no separate category for those of us who originate from South Philly. Yo!

Interestingly, the kit can also tell you about your own ancestry. Both my mother and father were Italian American, so I always assumed I was a purebred.

But maybe not.

And if I'm not Italian, somebody has to explain my nose.

The test can even determine what percent of my DNA comes from Neanderthals, which the website calls a Neanderthal Percentage.

I thought we all came from Neanderthals, but maybe not. Maybe there are other kinds of Thals.

The website says that Neanderthals have a bigger skull, which sounds exactly like me. Mother Mary always said I have a hard head, and now I have an excuse.

It's in my DNA.

In fact, it's her fault.

But will you be the one to tell her?


Lisa Scottoline and Francesca Serritella's most recent collection of humorous essays is "Meet Me at Emotional Baggage Claim." Look for Lisa's new novel, "Accused," in stores now.

lisa@scottoline.com.

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