I recently read an article on the bbc website about the theory of 'Six Degrees of Separation', meaning that everyone in the world is six friendships away from everyone else.
Sounds impossible doesn't it, but if you really think about it, i bet it is pretty accurate especially with the help of the inter'web now days.
The thought that all 6.9 billion people on the planet could be closely connected to one another through their network of friends is pretty mind-boggling But having written on this site for a few years i see how it is possible as it links people from all over the world.
Just thought it was an interesting topic, if anyone wishes to discuss.
I saw a TV programme awhile back that claimed everyone in the world has a twin lookalike somewhere. Must say, I've seen a few people on my travels that have a close resemblance to someone I know. Wonder if it's actually true.
You could also apply the issue to genealogy in terms of your own ancestors. Assuming that every century produces 4 new generations, then trace your ancestry back 33 generations, ie just over 8 centuries, and you have a figure 2 to the power 33, which is approximately 8.59 billion. Quite obviously we all have a fair amount of interbreeding along the line. Even Creationists believe that the world is more than 8 centuries old!
Three Albright College students designed a trivia game around the theory and actor Kevin Bacon (back in 1994). Seems they were bored during a heavy snowstorm and also watched Kevin Bacon movies.
Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon
As to genealogical approach... We actually had a car-full of Jehovah Witnesses who tried to explain Cain's (of Cain & Abel fame) wife. When asked were she really came from, the reply was "Adam & Eve had many many children." When asked if they were suggesting Cain married his sister, they first said yes then tried to say no. Talk about zero degrees of separation.
I am one degree away from Kevin Bacon half a dozen times.....That puts all of you two degrees away. Next time that game comes up, tell 'em to put that in their pipe and smoke it.
We've played that game with movie stars. Connecting Humphrey Bogart to Arnold Shwarzenegger in two moves and Katherine Hepburn to Madonna in four. Fun way to pass the time.