November 13, 2008

Resemblance bias...or is it?

The baby looks like...who? Mom? Dad? Mom's brother? Dad's sister? Paternal Grandad? Maternal great grandmom? None of them??? A completely random-looking baby? Isn't is amazing how different people can see whomever they want to see in a little baby? And it doesn't even stop with just overall resemblance, but goes into much greater detail.

Nose looks like dad's, fingers are shaped like mom's and so on. And you don't hear all this only from friends and family who have a reason to be biased. Step outside the house (at least in India) and you will have complete strangers stop by and take a stand on who the child looks like leaving the parent awarded the resemblance feeling--secretly, of course--very thrilled, while the other parent--visibly, of course--very irritated.

This must mean that all moms and dads resemble each other in some strange way. How else could you explain such a peculiar phenomenon? 

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