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So, my thanks to everyone who emailed to let me know about the new study published in Nature, regarding the sequencing of the genetic code of Ornithorhynchus anatinus, otherwise known as Herr Platypus. I've not yet had time to sit down and read all the reports, but there's some weird and wonderful news coming out of this study. For one, we now have genetic evidence that monotremes originated as far back as the mid-Jurassic Period, 170 million years ago (though the actual platypus fossils date only as far back about 100,000 years). This suggests that the Order Monotremata is quite a bit older than the earliest-known member of the group, Teinolophos trusleri, discovered in the Lower Cretaceous (approx. 123 mya) strata at Flat Rocks, Victoria, Australia. But far stranger is the discovery that ye olde platypus possesses "five X and five Y chromosomes..." which in theory "...means there are 25 possible sexes, though in practice that doesn't happen." A bloody shame, says I.

All hail the noble platypus, and hisherit's formidable toxic spurs!

And though it has nothing much to do with platypuses, you really should check out the James Gang. Some things are better heard and seen than described. So, have a listen. But, in the words of the Gang:

The James Gang is an updated 1920’s Vaudevillian throwback-style group of three magical entertainers that sing songs, dance, ride unicycles, perform magic and blow fire to name just a few of the things they do in their full show. There are (3) main performers with more background performers to come as the movement grows. T J G consists of Jellyroll James, Deacon Boondini and the Great Gatsby “for short we go by Jelly, Deacon and Gatsby” This group dresses in a high fashion style that is not seen today in music. They have many looks that range from 1920’s suit jackets with knickers, bow ties and knee high argyle sox to all denim jackets and pants tucked into Equestrian knee high boots with Barret and Poorboy hats armed with wooden canes. Think Harlem when they dressed really regal. It is the mission of the group to restore real performances back into the African American community and the world community at large.

Booyah!

Comments

loki1978de
May. 9th, 2008 06:37 am (UTC)
ye olde platypus possesses "five X and five Y chromosomes..." which in theory "...means there are 25 possible sexes, though in practice that doesn't happen." A bloody shame, says I.

There are secrets and mysteries that ye olde and most wise platypus keeps to herhimitself, just to puzzle us to no end, i believe.
25 different sexes...now imagine that. What a society we would have then. What Sirenia stories you would write then.