Twins For a Day
June 24, 2019 10:59 AM   Subscribe

 
Makes me think of the Talking Heads' True Stories movie and their emphasis also on twins.
posted by kalessin at 11:22 AM on June 24, 2019 [2 favorites]


When I was a child I was minorly obsessed with these kinds of birth-coincidence festivals. Another (much smaller) event that I always wanted to attend was the Worldwide Leap Year Festival in Anthony, TX. I think I was fascinated with these because it felt like a celebration of specialness, and what 9 year old girl doesn't want to be special? So it's interesting that it's also a place where they *aren't* special at all, they're completely normal.
posted by muddgirl at 11:30 AM on June 24, 2019 [4 favorites]


I'm a twin and I approve this comic.
posted by mundo at 11:48 AM on June 24, 2019 [3 favorites]


Me two.
posted by Autumnheart at 11:57 AM on June 24, 2019 [5 favorites]


Team Rocket!
posted by jillithd at 12:02 PM on June 24, 2019 [3 favorites]


Worldwide Leap Year Festival in Anthony, TX
And here I thought Anthony only had La Feria and La Tuna.
posted by Bee'sWing at 1:49 PM on June 24, 2019


Fraternal twin checking in here. I sense an opportunity to troll BOTH of my brothers via this comic. Brother A because he is my twin. Brother B because he is the father of my beautiful 1 year old niblings, also fraternal twins.

And I really loved how the writers emphasized how un-twin like the two of them felt. In some ways it is easier when you are part of a cis-gendered boy/girl twin combination. You already get treated as separate individuals because of the sex differences and assumptions about gender identity. Until you find yourself trying to explain to some idiot at the back of the bus in eighth grade that it is not possible biologically for a boy/girl twin combination to be identical.
posted by theBigRedKittyPurrs at 2:34 PM on June 24, 2019 [4 favorites]


There are identical boy/girl (or otherwise differing-gender) twins where one is trans, though.
posted by mosst at 3:04 PM on June 24, 2019 [5 favorites]


It was a lifelong dream for me to be able to send my mother and her twin to this conference. It breaks my heart that I wasn't able to do it before my aunt died.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 3:26 PM on June 24, 2019 [7 favorites]


mosst, absolutely!
posted by theBigRedKittyPurrs at 3:37 PM on June 24, 2019 [2 favorites]


I can only guess what it's like to be a twin born on leap day....
posted by mightshould at 3:39 PM on June 24, 2019 [1 favorite]


Or a set of twins born around midnight so one is born on leap day and the other is born March 1st
posted by acidnova at 4:07 PM on June 24, 2019 [6 favorites]


I wonder how much of the twin experience is caused by being infants raised in close proximity. I've seen claims (but no actual studies) that kids raised communally in (e.g.) communes or kibbutzim had a special bond.
posted by Joe in Australia at 4:53 PM on June 24, 2019 [3 favorites]


This was a nice comic. There's always that sensation you have as a twin of reveling in your shared identity but wanting to be your own person.
posted by Monochrome at 6:22 PM on June 24, 2019 [1 favorite]


I've told this story before, but one of the few (possibly only) things I'm dead sure about myself is that I was supposed to be a twin. I have no proof of this - my family insists there was only ever one of me, there are no other multiples in my epic family tree, and I have no idea how to get tested as a chimera.

Yet I'm still drawn to twins, always have, and sometimes they show up in odd ways. I learned recently that my best friend was supposed to be a twin (and he thought I was too, though I don't recall ever having told him this before). My arts mentor is a twin. I read stories about twins who find each other later in life and I die of envy.

But it's not like there's a way to relieve twin dysphoria. A friend who's a Druid-type did a scrying and said that I do have a twin spiritually but there's nothing I could do about that information. It's just a hole in my heart.
posted by divabat at 6:35 PM on June 24, 2019 [5 favorites]


Back in the 90s when AOL chatrooms were still a thing, my twin brother and I somehow started talking to a set of girl twins our age. We talked to them off and on for a year or so. We lived in California and they lived across the country. We lost touch with them but it reminds me of a time when we and the internet were both young and innocent. I've never been to Ohio. Maybe the IRL version can be as good as that 90s chatroom.
posted by mundo at 7:34 PM on June 24, 2019 [2 favorites]


A friend of mine is a twin. Years ago she was working two different retail jobs in the same mall: in a record store during the week and directly across the way in a health food store on weekends.

One day while she was working in the record store, a customer diffidently said, "Can I ask you a weird question?"

Slightly on guard, she said, "Okay..."

The guy continued: "By chance, do you have a twin?"

She responded, "Actually, yes I do. I'm not sure you where you would have seen my sister, though: she lives out of town."

The guy triumphantly pressed on: "I KNEW IT! There's this woman who works in the health food store just over there who looks just like you!"
posted by ricochet biscuit at 7:44 PM on June 24, 2019 [22 favorites]


Love the panel of Heracles giving Iphicles a giant noogie.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 7:58 PM on June 24, 2019 [2 favorites]


I used to fantasize about going to this, and wanted so much for my identical sister to come with me, and for the first time in our lives actually enjoy being twins instead of fighting for our separate identities. She scoffed at it, as well as when I'd suggest twin studies; she just was never into it, or at least, never expressed being into it to me. After she died, a few people told me that she was, but I guess she'd have been equally as ambivalent as the guys in the comics. Though it's nice to learn from this that they welcome those of us who've lost our twins--I had somehow thought solo wasn't an option.
posted by emcat8 at 9:59 PM on June 24, 2019 [8 favorites]


I love that story, ricochet biscuit!
posted by jamjam at 10:31 PM on June 24, 2019 [1 favorite]




I love that story, ricochet biscuit!

The guy was apparently really thrown off by the explanation behind all this — “Yeah, I have a twin but that is not her. It’s just me again.” I get his confusion. It seems simultaneously weird and anticlimactic, which is a rare combination.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 11:21 PM on June 24, 2019 [2 favorites]


I came in here looking for anecdotes/commentary on the telepathic twin connection thing mentioned in the post. Anyone?
posted by mantecol at 12:29 AM on June 25, 2019


The guy was apparently really thrown off by the explanation behind all this — “Yeah, I have a twin but that is not her. It’s just me again.” I get his confusion. It seems simultaneously weird and anticlimactic, which is a rare combination.

"Wait, so you guys are triplets?"
posted by The Underpants Monster at 12:56 AM on June 25, 2019 [8 favorites]


Ricochet biscuit, I really want her sister to come home for the summer and to take jobs at a 3rd and 4th establishment in that mall and really blow his mind!

I always fantasised about being an identical quadruplet. It seemed extra cool and you'd have a choice of sisters to hang out with. Twinness seems intense.
posted by kitten magic at 3:57 AM on June 25, 2019 [2 favorites]


Sometimes twins don't get along.

She has a cast-iron defense: they'll never be able to prove it wasn't her sister.
posted by Joe in Australia at 4:29 AM on June 25, 2019 [1 favorite]


On the topic of twins, I highly recommend this twin documentary, Two of a Kind. I knew Linda and met the filmmaker, Leora, and they did have a bond that was palpable. Warning for a bit of a tear jerker ending as Linda’s cancer, which started as cervical cancer, did take her life. Get your HPV vaccine, please.
posted by warriorqueen at 9:34 AM on June 25, 2019


Sometimes twins don't get along.

She has a cast-iron defense: they'll never be able to prove it wasn't her sister.


Identical twins do have different fingerprints as that's something that's not determined by genetics.
posted by acidnova at 10:08 AM on June 25, 2019


But not to abuse the edit window: I do want to see/read a story where the obvious murderer is the surviving twin but because of some ridiculous legal loophole where they can't prove the specific identities of murderer and victim, the murderer goes free.

Might work better with identical triplets.
posted by acidnova at 10:12 AM on June 25, 2019


I came in here looking for anecdotes/commentary on the telepathic twin connection thing mentioned in the post. Anyone?

If negative confirmation means anything then I am your man. I have never found anything like this with any of the twins I have known. If anything, it seems the reverse; all the twins I have ever talked to about twindom seem curiously unaware that most of us do not know what it is like to have a clone walking around: that is, things that seem obvious to non-twins seemingly do not occur to twins.

I used to work with a pair of twin sisters who scoffed at my question about whether they had ever taken advantage of their status for Twin Stunts either dubious (take your sister’s math test because she is unprepared) or benign (sub in for your twin on photo day because she has a zit). They both seemed shocked — “No! Why would we?”

Well, because you can. Most of us do not have the option. When it is your normal state of affairs, I guess you rarely think about having an identical double as an unusual thing. One of the workmates was telling me about an odd incident that has happened to her a week before, where suddenly a bunch of strangers were shouting at her trying to get her attention across a busy road, but she had no idea why these weirdos were shouting at her. “Did you think they might be friends of Helen’s?” I asked.

“...oh, yeah. I guess.”
posted by ricochet biscuit at 11:26 AM on June 25, 2019 [1 favorite]


I've told this story before, but one of the few (possibly only) things I'm dead sure about myself is that I was supposed to be a twin. I have no proof of this - my family insists there was only ever one of me, there are no other multiples in my epic family tree, and I have no idea how to get tested as a chimera.

Maybe you had a twin! Vanishing twins are turning out to be much more common than anyone realized. Most women don't have their first ultrasounds until around 12 weeks, by which time one twin may well be gone. However, women who have fertility treatment have much earlier ultrasounds and (for better or worse) find out that they've lost an embryo, even though they've remained pregnant. Apparently they think that even in the absence of fertility treatments vanishing twins may be very common and it's just that you would never know. I lost an embryo around 7 weeks. If I hadn't had a 6 week ultrasound, I would have seen one baby at the 12 week ultrasound and would never have known he was once a twin.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 12:42 PM on June 25, 2019 [5 favorites]


I have identical twins and I'm always so curious about what it will be like when they grow up -- how close they'll stay, whether they'll make similar life choices, everything. Adult twins are constantly introducing themselves to us and telling us about their twins, and I love getting to hear about those relationships. Every identical twin I've met (or twin who thought they were identical, anyway -- maybe a little bit of bias there) said that they're still very close.

(Also, my twins had a terrible case of twin to twin transfusion syndrome and I don't feel like my health care system did an awesome job of managing that during my pregnancy, despite the fact that it's so common. So I appreciate knowing that there are people out there making noise about it.)
posted by gerstle at 1:09 PM on June 25, 2019 [2 favorites]


A friend whose husband died a decade ago mentioned that his appendicitis (not the cause of death, fortunately) had been difficult to diagnose because his appendix was on the left side. I blurted out unthinkingly that maybe he had been part of a set of conjoined twins (formerly called Siamese? I assume that term's been deprecated), who are occasionally not just identical, but true mirror images of each other, and she recalled a doctor saying something similar because of a peculiar scar he had, and that there was some unstated family trauma that had blighted his early childhood.

He also had a history of severe autoimmune problems, but I have been assuming that having tissue in ones body from an identical twin isn't a source of autoimmunity, but if identical twins can have twin transfusion syndrome, I don't know.
posted by jamjam at 1:52 PM on June 25, 2019


Twin to twin transfusion isn't an autoimmune thing, it happens when their blood vessels get mixed up and misdirected so they're pumping blood one to the other instead of exchanging with the mother. It only happens in identical twins, because they have to have a shared placenta. And it's super common! Something like 10% of identical twins I think.
posted by gerstle at 2:07 PM on June 25, 2019 [2 favorites]


We have identical twins that shared a placenta, and our obstetrician (the only high-risk obstetrician in our health region) was incredibly paranoid about twin to twin transfusion. He insisted on weekly ultrasounds to check blood flow, and really wanted to induce at 37 weeks because he felt at that point the benefits of longer gestation no longer outweighed the risk that transfusion could develop in those last few weeks (ultimately, inducing didn't work but things happened on their own at 38 weeks and we now have awesome healthy 8 year olds boys).

We used IVF, but only implanted one egg despite the fertility doctor recommending two (our neighbour had twins and it looked like a lot of work, so we wanted to avoid that at least in the first round of IVF). When we went in for the second ultrasound, the fertility doctor got a weird look on his face and spent a lot of time looking at the ultrasound without saying anything, so of course we were worried. I'd also noticed that there seemed to be two different heartbeats, but not being an ultrasound technician I didn't really know what to make of that. He must have been shitting himself that he'd made a mistake and somehow implanted two eggs, but finally he got a relieved look once he'd confirmed that there was only one placenta and congratulated us on identical twins. And then immediately made us an appointment with the high risk obstetrician!

It's funny though because people make assumptions about IVF and twins, but in our case IVF made twins much less likely than in the general population since with only one egg implanted fraternal twins would be impossible, and identical twins are quite rare (much less common than fraternal). Our fertility doctor had never had this happen before.
posted by borsboom at 2:54 PM on June 25, 2019 [4 favorites]


> whether they had ever taken advantage of their status for Twin Stunts either dubious

My two great-uncles were identical twins, and were mostly raised by their older brother, my grandfather.

So when the uncles were about 14 or 15, ONE of them went swimming in the town cistern. The cistern is where everyone got their drinking water, so this was a somewhat serious offense.

Anyway, poor Grandpa could never punish the miscreant appropriately, because they NEVER to their dying day, admitted which of the two was caught by the county sheriff swimming in the cistern.

This happened in maybe 1935 and it was still at least a moderately hilarious story by the time I heard it in maybe 1969. They brought it up every time the three of them got together, which was at least once a year (family reunion--most of the rest of us were there as annual witnesses as well).

By say 2005 Grandpa had passed away and the story was wearing a little thin, but literally to the dying day of both of them, they never revealed the secret. Mentioned at both of their funerals, fi I recall.

So a somewhere greater than 70-year-old twin trick, solution never revealed.

Well played . . .
posted by flug at 3:48 PM on June 25, 2019 [4 favorites]


P.S. All three played pinochle, especially when they were together with all their other pinochle-playing relatives, and all three continually cheated like fiends.

This could well be a closely related personality trait . . .
posted by flug at 3:52 PM on June 25, 2019


It's funny though because people make assumptions about IVF and twins, but in our case IVF made twins much less likely than in the general population since with only one egg implanted fraternal twins would be impossible, and identical twins are quite rare (much less common than fraternal).

My fertility doctor told me that no one knows why, but identical twins are more common with IVF than with regular pregnancies. I'm surprised your doctor had never heard of it.

"While most multiple pregnancies conceived with fertility treatments are fraternal twins, the use of fertility treatment does increase your risk of having identical twins. According to one study, identical twins made up 0.95 percent of the pregnancies conceived with treatment. That's double the general population's risk." cite
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 5:28 PM on June 25, 2019


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