Saturday, June 28, 2008

Self-serving evolution

When a deer fly lands on me, I kill it. I'm quite sensitive to the little buggers buzzing around my head when I go get the paper or when I'm out for a hike or run. Since deer flies are quite a bit larger than mosquitoes or gnats I know exactly when and where they touch down on me. And I'm quick to end their lives. Sometimes they'll get off a quick bite, but still, they're smushed into oblivion before they can lift off again. Whatever deer flies are supposed to do to carry on their lives after they've bitten a host has been staunched under my palm for those few that dare to touch me. So I figure eventually I will eliminate all deer flies that are genetically attracted to my particular scent. I'm not sure how long "eventually" is, but if I live long enough the process of evolution should select out all those deer flies that are attracted to me. It just does not make sense from a "survival of the fittest" perspective for them to land on me. After all, given a really, really long period of time I could wipe out the entire deer fly species. So one day far into the future nature should recognize (theoretically) that I am lethal to deer flies and blacklist me from their pool of targets. Until that day, I'll be exploiting Darwin's theory one smack at a time.

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