Monday, March 26, 2012

The Watson Toe

I never thought of my feet as anything but my feet until I heard my nephew talking one day. He announced that one of his daughters has "the Watson toe."

Torn between rabid curiosity and half-afraid this was something bad, I leaned forward to ask more about it. My nephew claimed the Watson toe came to his kids by way of his mother, who is my sister, and we all started out with the maiden name of Watson, hence the Watson toe.

Instead of assuaging my curiosity, that bit of information fired up the dormant scientist in my brain. Were we talking genetics? Could I have it? I ripped off my shoes and studied my feet. Lo and behold, I had the Watson toe as well. (My foot is at 6 o'clock in the photo above.)

Now for those of you who are serious scientists, know that this is a localized term. There is no such scientific designation as the Watson toe, which is what we now call the second toe being longer than the first toe.

I found a study online in a scientific journal Ergonomics which measured toes in Caucasians, Koreans, and Asians. And if I understood what they said, Caucasians have a more rounded toe extension pattern than Koreans or Asians. Click over for yourself and have a gander at the phrasing: http://tinyurl.com/833myw5

Did you know there was such a thing as toe cleavage? That's the gap of toes that shows above the covered toe of a shoe, like a pump. I don't often let my toe cleavage show - do you?

Getting back to toe length - is your big toe or your second toe longer? Is that really determined by genetics?

Here's a point of view which says maybe. http://tinyurl.com/7sgej8e The upshot of this more readable article: genetics may play a role, but more than one gene is likely involved. Thank you, John MacDonald from the University of Delaware for thinking about this in such detail!

So much for toes.

I've had two smashing guest appearances elsewhere for my recent releases. If you haven't stopped in at Pat Stoltey's place to see my interview and my gardening hat, check it out at this permalink: http://bit.ly/GEXpRf . Also, Jane Richardson kindly hosted me for a One-Link Lowdown at her place and there's lots of great intel and dirt there. Here's that permalink: http://tinyurl.com/6mntyz7 This coming Friday, I'll be hanging out with Caroline Clemmons at her place(http://carolineclemmons.blogspot.com/)

Always a pleasure to see you at Mudpies. Y'all come back now, ya hear?

Maggie Toussaint
www.maggietoussaint.com

14 comments:

  1. I guess I have the Watson toe. And yes, it's genetic. All kinds of things like that about us are genetic. You have some % of a chance to inherit any given trait your parents and grandparents have.
    Well, this was a first--a blog about toes.I wish my toes were pretty--that's all I care about.

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    1. Celia, I have just the fix for you! Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so all you have to do is believe your toes are beautiful, and they will be. I had a more serious blog planned but I ended up writing about toes. Not sure why, but I believe in bending with the Muse. Thanks for the comment!
      Maggie

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  2. *G* Maggie, who knew all of this toe-info was out there? And, have we only scratched the tip of the toe iceberg? :) Thanks for the fun topic. A great way to kick off the week! ^5
    *Hugs*

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    1. Hi Diana, I was taken-aback by the concept of toe cleavage and then relieved that I don't let mine hang out. I'm always banging my toes, I guess because they are so darned long. I was out running errands today and came across the perfect sandals with a bumper across the two big toes. I love these shoes! Maggie

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  3. Maggie dear, I just discovered we are related! I have the Watson toe! I don't know about toes but I studied the hand and palm intensively and read books about them. Actually, my Dad started it and I took over. If the index is longer than the ring finger, you have a leader tendency and like to take control. If the ring finger is longer than the index you are a dreamer, or an artist.

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    1. Mona, or should I say, Sister! How cool that we share the same toe configuration. I've always had an interest in palms. Next time we meet, I'm going to have you look mine over and give me the news. My fingers are configured like my toes, with the index just shorter than its neighbor. The index and ring fingers are darn near neck and neck with length. Guess that makes me a bossy dreamer. Thanks for the comment! Maggie

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  4. I think toe cleavage verges on the indecent! Or at least it looks like your shoes don't fit properly. I have such short toes that I don't think it would be possible in my case. So maybe I'm just jealous!

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    1. Toe cleavage took me by surprise too. I'd be half afraid there'd be lint or fuzz or something in there. No point in showing off something that isn't attractive, so my vote is to show the entire toe or cover 'em up.

      And Jenny, what I wouldn't do to have short feet. Those are always the sizes of shoes that seem plentiful in stores. The big galoots that fit my feet sell out in no time.

      Thanks for coming by!

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  5. Welcome Ergo Baby Carriers! Thanks for your kind words.

    Maggie

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  6. Maggie, I might not look it, but apparently I'm your sister as well:-)

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    1. Su, I've never let appearance stop me from adding sisters. Welcome to the family! Maggie

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  7. Hi Maggie. This toe post is so funny because my mom always claimed I inherited all of my body shapes and idiosyncrasies from her except for my strange toes...those, she claimed, could only be blamed on my dad's side of the family. Thanks a lot, Dad...

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