I woke up this Saturday morning and began to feel like Rip van Winkle, that American Dutchman of kingly disposition who fell asleep in the Catskill Mountains of New York after sharing a drink with the ghost of Henry Hudson and woke up twenty years later an old man.
It wasn’t the creaking bones, although my joints aren’t at their best until I’ve been up for five minutes or so. It wasn’t that I sleep in a little longer at weekend. It wasn’t a hangover either as I don’t indulge any more. No, it the trip to C0-op that made me feel as if I’d mislaid a chunk of time.
The paper started it. An avalanche of inserts fell out as I picked it up so I couldn’t help but notice what usually goes straight into the recycling bin. Argos Winter Sale! brayed the uppermost which was the start of my van Winkle moment.
When I went to bed it was autumn. There has been some awful weather this week, but the gales did their job of stripping the leaves off the trees. Definitely autumnal. So how had I missed an entire season?
Continuing my shop, I moved over an aisle to buy something something tasty for breakfast. Croissants, a pecan or chocolate danish or something like that, but they had none. Just mince pies, although in flaky pastry rather than the usual short stuff. So not only had I missed autumn, but Christmas must be almost upon us? Or perhaps I’d missed it altogether if Argos were having a winter sale?
It took a check of the date on the newspaper to put my mind at rest, although I also checked the year, just in case.
Anyway, latest useless fact gained from QI last night — the fingerprints of humans and koala bears are almost identical, both distinguishable from those of chimpanzees and other primates.
This is odd as humans and koalas have developed quite separately. Convergent evolution it’s called. Two species evolving the same solution to a similar problem.
What they didn’t explain was what exactly that problem was that fingerprints have evolved to solve? What is the purpose of fingerprints, other than to give the police SOCO something to do on The Bill?
The only reason for fingerprints I could think of is so that we can have biometric ID cards, but just how often does a koala bear have to prove his or her identity?