True test of the tongue

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From setting tongues wagging to biting one’s own tongue off, this multifariously functioning organ of the body is one capable of carrying out many an acts and awarenesses of substance in its muscular indeed moistness. From mouthing words to uttering them, from licking foods to deciphering the taste of them, from eating and digesting to even breathing and whistling, from kissing passionately to making all evidences in tongue in cheek insincerity, this surprisingly significant organ in general and sense organ in particular provides in itself an amalgamation of the many ways through which we come to perceive the world. For all of its such inbuilt serving of purposes though, this delightfully pinky presence of tissue inside the mouth harbours also such quirks that further makes it a ‘thing’ in all curiosity.

The tongue might be a ground for sufficient necessary activities to unfurl to aid us in our living but it also can be a premise for antics to unfold- or rather fold across. For indeed tongue folding or curling or rolling makes for such a oddly satisfying experience in its first hand partaking as well as in passive viewing of it that the majority of us earthly folks have come to be fascinated with even in no or little essence of it. As an act in considerable amusement and one that comes naturally to the most of us tongue rolling sure is a prospect in ‘evolutionary entertainment’ destined to keep one engaged for at least a range of time in prolly benevolent inheritance of this purposefully purposeless power.

The inheritance claim though has been disputed in rather recent revealing of the nature of this remarkable working in nonworking reputation. Long believed and in fact established to be a trait in genetic basis, this myth of sorts finds instead more worldwide acceptance today as a-dare we say, skill- that can be picked up indeed by just about anyone. This provides therefore a basis in thwarting the monopoly that a significant chunk of the world’s population can lay claim to in their rather effortless exercising of this tongue rolling maverick in different shapes and structures of it.

The most common happens to be a rather ordinary tube shape even as ‘feats’ like inward folding of the tongue without any aid from the teeth or the pointy presentation of it or a somewhat advanced upside down twisting of the tongue sideways tend also to be fairly attempted acts in not so sporadic occurrence. A more tricky one happens to be finding oneself possessing of the ability of making a clover shape out of their tongues, in a dizzying display of bending and twisting the immensely flexible organ of the body to induce the standard three or even a luckier four folds. Needless to say it is this last of the ways in which the tongue can be made to bend and twist and curl and turn that makes for a case in much rareness within the all encompassing dominion of the tongue rolling endowing in all generosity.

To examine any case of the tongue roll however demands a necessary digging into what is perhaps amongst the biggest of genetic myths to ever pertain to this exploration in human biology. In fact so ingrained is this notion of it being a definite genetic trait that has made it a mainstay of introductory genetic and biology courses for long despite it being unfounded shortly after it was established almost universally. Way back in 1940, an American geneticist Alfred Sturtevant had published research that asserted tongue rolling as an ability availed out of passing on the dominant gene from one of one’s parent. Merely some time over a decade later in 1952 entailed the corresponding debunking of this statement by scientist Philip Matlock that should have halted already this much touted case in genetic dominance. But for some reason the original theory continued to flourish and in such empathic assertions of it that made it a textbook staple in lessons sprawled across the pages of educational biology.

It wouldn’t be much, much later, only in the second decade of the 21st century to be precise that the tongue rolling characteristic being not exclusively etched in the scribblings of evolutionary biology came to find greater acceptance as a fact in all authenticity of it. Why this stark passage of time that needed to be allowed for a myth long debunked to find commonplace prevalence even within something as influential as the life skill in learning makes for a consideration in much bafflement. Nevertheless though with the truth finally managing to find its way like it has been always prophesised to do, no matter how many turns of the calendar and change of the dates the world is made to witness before lounging in such very obvious proposition, and the tongue rolling exploits need not be too exalted cases in supposed exclusivity.

All said and done, genetics might still amount to something when it comes to displaying the wins at impeccable tongue rolling like in instances when the elusive clover shaped formation is encountered in sheer surprise of its occurrence. But it isn’t all a happening in such simplicity that sums up the uniquely widespread manifestation of the tongue twisting abilities. The workings leading to this insignificantly significant act tends to be one more intricate, with its genetic basis continuing to find unfurling but not across a singular strand of it. Also associated would be other factors like the environmental for instance that is anyway what should manifest in this form of what transpires as evolutionary behavior, even in no exact evolved need for it.

tongue rolling
Source: Twitter

And yet this fairly universal characteristic boasted of by a humongous 65 to 81 percent of the global human population can be a derivation also out of such factors that are very evidently non genetic but still touches upon the fully biological connect in birth. Even something as random as the position of the individual in the womb can influence the extent to which one comes to possess this trait in tongue twisting as rolls or curls or bends. That said though, tongue rolling is something that can be learned indeed by pretty much everyone of us even when it might not be exactly the easiest of trades to pick up as it might seem at first in long oversimplified a perception of it.

Bringing us to terms with another amusing proposition in the tongue rolling multiverse is this trait of both innate and acquired affiliations that asserts as common enough even in its eccentricity to not classify as a somewhat special experience altogether. For the many who find themselves rolling their tongues in as much frequency as they could be bothered enough to induce the eye rolls, this is an act they almost subconsciously perform and display in such assertion that do not even warrant their absolute attention. Largely ignorant therefore of their own dwelling in a profile unnecessarily skilled would be these tongue rollers of whatever capacity possible who are oblivious thus also to the knowledge of this certain attribute of theirs being an absolutely exclusive universal identity through all of humankind.

And yet even in the face of such obliviousness there still exist some amongst us who are so sure of their tongue rolling abilities that even has them set out to chase records and break and make them in even more mindboggling a show in variety. With an unbelievable 14 such forms in which she manages to effortlessly shape her tongue as, an Indian girl Dhanvitha J. holds the distinction of making the maximum number of shapes in tongue rolling in a feat commendable indeed in the sheer stretch of her tongue speaking for its own!

tongue rolling facts
Source: Facebook

As something not particularly advantageous or disadvantageous, tongue rolling should not be a case of concern in all absurdity or commonality of it. There’s however no denying for sure the interesting impression that this long held notion in hereditariness has managed to etch upon the collective psyche of the human species, even in its not so assertive rooting in absolute consciousness. As a knowledge so blatantly imparted in all erroneous basis, this twist in the tale of the tongue that makes already for a trait in tremendousness through so much of its travails upon the traits of tastes and talks in particular with associated arenas of functioning no any less important as well is a tickling indeed type of revelation that delights and amuses and intrigues the human being in all their own residing in this sphere of existence so much so that even persuades them to pursue and in fact perfect it in persistent practice much in keeping up with the universal reference of the two Ps. As a mode of self entertainment availed out of oneself as well, the tongue rolling dynamics is one further validating the multilinear essence of an organ easily the most ‘soft’ in its being but one yielding an identity prominent in as much uniqueness as the exclusive imprint of it.