I am not holding my own from an evolutionary viewpoint. I have three children, which should pass on my genes sufficiently, but I only have three grandchildren. I need one more to keep my share of genes in the gene pool, and I am not likely to get any more.

My selfish gene should be satisfied that my parents have nine great grandchildren with a tenth one due soon and others likely. However, part of me wants more grandchildren. I want to pass on my genetic legacy.

But I am a human as well as an animal, and I will pass on memes as well as genes. I don’t have adopted children or grandchildren, but if I did, they would have a legacy from me. As a teacher, I have an opportunity to pass on bits of my ideas and beliefs to others. Although I probably don’t influence any individual student a great deal, the sum of the small amount I influence a large number of students should be enough to satisfy me.

Part of me still wants more grandchildren.


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