Captain Genealogy–Repost

The truth is that I have been too busy with the rest of my life to do any genealogy research or writing, so I am reposting an older piece.

I am using this post because, for some unknown reason, I have been involved in a lot of conversations lately about why people find different things funny–or not.

I thought this was funny.  I thought I was funny, but on reflection, maybe not.

Feel free to let me know what you think.




It was late one night; I should have been in bed.  Instead I struggled with my disappearing ancestors. There in 1900, there in 1920, apparently abducted by space aliens in 1910.  I searched by last name, I searched by first name, I searched by location, I searched and searched and searched.  I banged my head against the desk in frustration.

Suddenly, out of the mists of time or perhaps the humidifier in the corner of the room, a figure appeared, dressed in cape, mask and tights, and eating a double fudge brownie.

” Who are you?” I gasped, a little disturbed by a late night visit from a man in tights.

“Fear not, Judith,” he said, as the room was filled with an otherworldly music, Tchaikovsky with a hint of Steely Dan. Words were heard over the music, “It’s Captain Genealogy, protector of our precious family heritage, able to sort photos with a single glance while restoring them to their original state of grace, able to file piles of documents with a flick of his wrist, able to smash brick walls with a single blow.”

“Whoa!” said I.

“We’ll have you sorted out shortly,” he answered. “Would you care for a brownie?”

“Why not? ” I’ve always felt that genealogy goes well with chocolate.

A few moments passed as I munched contentedly.

“Look here,” he said. “The indexers thought that second “b” was an “l”, making it Bullick, not Bublick.”

“What kind of a moron could think that was an “l”?” I said.

“Now Judith,” he replied, “Everyone makes mistakes.  Genealogists are kind and helpful people, who never speak an ill of those to whom they pay ridiculous sums of money to provide the services they so badly need.”

My head hung in shame, well not really. We do pay these people. “Sorry,” I said.  While you’re here can you help me with these Bloods?”

He cocked his head to the left.  “Gotta go”, he said, “a cemetery is being vandalized in Cleveland.”

With that he was gone in a puff of smoke leaving behind a faint odor of warm chocolate.

Then the otherworldly music started again and the voice over.  “Do not despair.  In your darkest hour of genealogical need, a hero will appear, his tights a little snug from the double fudge brownies, able to solve even the most arcane of genealogical problems.”

As dawn broke, I sorted through my notes and began to convince myself that it had all been a dream.  But as I gathered my things, there in the middle of the desk, I saw a tiny piece of double fudge brownie.

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