If people didn’t conduct studies I probably wouldn’t have much to write about. That’s not a bad thing – you’re never too old to learn something new. The only distressing part is sometimes you learn stuff that makes you think the good Lord gave you a rotten deal.
Case in Point: A study conducted at the University of Auckland’s Liggins Institute in New Zealand dealt me the deafening blow that simply being the firstborn sister may put a woman at higher risk of becoming overweight or obese down the road.
I, being the firstborn of three sisters in our family, take umbrage at this insinuation but I can’t deny the actuality of this study for two reasons: One, it’s true, and two, I am.
At first glance, this gave me a really good excuse for a lifetime of weight gain and loss (mostly gain). I’ve tried every diet known to man – make that woman - men can lose 10 pounds simply by riding a bicycle for a couple hours based on my own personal study of a near and dear to me individual of the male species.
But the study does admit that out of 13,406 pairs of sisters only 29% of firstborns were more likely to be overweight later in life than their second-born siblings. (They were also 40% more likely to be obese despite being just a little bit taller than their younger sisters, which could knock me out of the whole deal right off the bat, because I’m also the shortest.)
It doesn’t help any that the 29% isn’t great enough to make it be considered a major factor, since this new research does concur with other observational studies by researchers of men and children that also showed a link between birth order and weight, and further indicated that being oldest was also associated with higher blood pressure. So not only was I was born to be fat, they had to throw in high blood pressure too. What a revoltin’ development this is!
Well, I couldn’t let it go without finding something more positive about being the firstborn daughter or even the firstborn child, so I did a little further research on my own. I checked out Wikipedia, Psychology Today, Medical Daily and several other websites’ information on firstborns, and I feel much better now.
It seems my category of siblings is more intelligent and organized; we do better in school and are less likely to have substance abuse problems. We’re conscientious, dependable, accommo-dating, persistent and ready to get things done! Something like half of American presidents were oldest children and every astronaut who walked on the moon was a firstborn (or only) child.
Some firstborns are high achievers, hard driven and ruthless. A common characteristic of this group is that they tend to be perfectionists. They strive for unrealistic goals, don’t deal well with criticism, are devastated by failure, frequently pessimistic, and take on so many responsibilities that things can go out of control. Oh, wait! That last description surely isn’t me. At least not now, in my golden years. I haven’t achieved anything productive or even worth mentioning for years except maybe losing 40 pounds, but I’ve gained half of that back. My only unrealistic goal is to live to be a hundred but come to think of it, in this day and age that might not be so unrealistic after all.
I may be a bit of a perfectionist, but that’s only in the kitchen where I don’t deal well with criticism, am devastated by failure, frequently pessimistic, and take on so many responsibilities that things can go out of control.
OMG! That IS me! I should have quit while I was ahead. I’m quitting now and heading for the kitchen where I promise to be calm, cool, and collected while I get a head start on tonight’s dessert – a tasty Muffin Pan recipe.
MINI CHERRY CHEESE CAKES
1 Can cherry pie filling
1/2 Cup Graham cracker crumbs
2 Tbsp. Butter, melted
8 oz. cream Cheese, softened
1/4 Cup white sugar
1 egg, beaten
2 tsp. vanilla
salt, to taste
Line muffin tins with 9 cupcake liners. Set oven to 350°. In a small bowl, combine cracker crumbs and butter; divide evenly between liners, pressing gently with a juice glass to flatten. In a large bowl, mix sugar and cream cheese until smooth. Stir in egg and vanilla. Divide filling evenly between cupcake liners, about 2/3 full. Add one tablespoon of cherry pie filling into each and swirl with a knife. Bake for 20 to 22 minutes or until set. Cool completely in pan. Top with additional cherry pie filling. Store in refrigerator.