August 16, 2008

Yao Ming: Successful Eugenics Experiment?

The Olympics are always a festival of human biodiversity, with each sport having its ideal body-type. The Chinese Olympic team flagbearer Yao Ming, the enormously tall Houston Rockets center who memorably led the Chinese in during the Opening Ceremonies next to the tiny hero boy who rescued two classmates buried in the recent earthquake, is the product of a more or less arranged marriage between the centers on the Chinese national men's and women's basketball teams. Colby Cosh points out the 2005 book Operation Yao Ming by Brook Larmer, which begins:

The faint whispers of a genetic conspiracy coursed through the corridors of Shanghai No. 6 Hospital on the evening of Sept. 12, 1980. It was shortly after 7 p.m., and a patient in the maternity ward had just endured an excruciating labor to give birth to a baby boy. An abnormally large baby boy. The doctors and nurses on duty should have anticipated something out of the ordinary. The boy's parents, after all, were retired basketball stars whose marriage the year before had made them the tallest couple in China. The mother, Fang Fengdi, an austere beauty with a pinched smile, measured 1.88 m—more than half a foot taller than the average man in Shanghai. The father, Yao Zhiyuan, was a 2.08-m giant whose body pitched forward in the kind of deferential stoop that comes from a lifetime of ducking under door frames and leaning down to listen to people of more normal dimensions. So imposing was their size that ever since childhood, the two had been known simply as Da Yao and Da Fang—Big Yao and Big Fang.

Still, the medical staff surely had never seen a newborn quite like this: the enormous legs, the broad, squarish cranium, the hands and feet so fully formed that they seemed to belong to a three-year-old. At more than 5 kg, he was nearly double the size of the average Chinese newborn. The name his parents gave him, from a Chinese character that unifies the sun and the moon, was Ming, meaning bright.

News of Yao Ming's birth was quickly relayed across town to the top leaders of the Shanghai Sports Commission. They were not surprised. These men and women had been trying to cultivate a new generation of athletes who would embody the rising power of China. The boy in the maternity ward represented, in many ways, the culmination of their plan.

The experiment had no code name, but in Shanghai basketball circles it might as well have been called Operation Yao Ming. The wheels had been set in motion more than a quarter-century earlier, when Chairman Mao Zedong exhorted his followers to funnel the nation's most genetically gifted youngsters into the emerging communist sports machine. Two generations of Yao Ming's forebears had been singled out by authorities for their hulking physiques, and his mother and father had both been drafted into the sports system. "We had been looking forward to the arrival of Yao Ming for three generations," says Wang Chongguang, a retired Shanghai coach who played with Yao's father in the 1970s and would coach Yao himself in the '90s. "That's why I thought his name should be Yao Panpan." Long-Awaited Yao....

The responsibility for arranging marriages among the most gifted retired athletes often fell to the coaches. "We had to do a lot of work as matchmakers," says Wang Yongfang, the former sports-institute leader who coached Da Fang early in her career and, after a long stint of hard labor in the countryside, was rehabilitated as the leader of the Shanghai women's team. "These girls spent far more time with the coaches and team leaders than with their own parents. Who else was there to make sure everything was O.K.?"

Before Da Fang even started to look for a husband, Shanghai officials had identified a suitable partner for her: Yao Zhiyuan. Yao, an active player who was two years her junior, was an agreeable man whose ready smile and love of a good quip contrasted sharply with Da Fang's grim demeanor. For several years the two players had eaten in the same cafeteria, lived in the same dormitory and practiced on adjoining courts, but, Da Fang says, "we didn't know each other very well." Shanghai coaches teased the two towering centers that they were made for each other. But it was up to a team leader named Liu Shiyu to make the match. He spoke with the players separately and convinced them that they could "make do" with each other—adding that they had the Communist Party's stamp of approval to do so. Given such high-level interest, how could Da Fang and Da Yao refuse?

The sports community didn't have to wait long for the first offspring of what the press was calling "the first couple of Asia." In the small apartment where Da Fang and Da Yao lived, everyone gathered to see the miracle child—long-awaited Yao.

Of course, another explanation for this matchmaking other than selective breeding might be: Who else was Yao's gigantic mother, Da Fang (Big Fang), who had been a particularly nasty Red Guard during the Cultural Revolution, going to marry?

For further reading, here's my 2003 article "NBA Height Spreading Globally" on where tallness is most frequently found.

Here's my article on the 2004 Athens Summer Games from The American Conservative.

Why did the gender gap in Olympic running speeds between male and female medalists unexpectedly widen after the 1988 Olympics? My 1997 National Review article explains here.

Here's my 2000 article from VDARE.com on the Sydney Games, including the media-induced psychological pressures that often keep the sports crazy Japanese from performing up to expectations, and the remarkable lack of interest in sports of Indians.

Here's my 2006 VDARE.com article on why Bryant Gumbel doesn't like the Winter Olympics -- too many guys.

Here's my 2000 VDARE.com article on why nationalism and the Olympics go together like bread and butter.

Here's my 2002 VDARE.com article
explaining why the 1996 Summer Games in Atlanta were notoriously full of organizational snafus, while the 2000 Winter Games in Salt Lake City were a model of efficiency.

By the way, I don't know why all the blank lines between paragraphs on my blog have suddenly disappeared, but, following the success of my strategy for dealing with the recent Sitemeter-Blogger-Firefox imbroglio -- not doing a damn thing other than hoping the problem goes away by itself -- I resolve to do as little as possible to deal with it.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

29 comments:

PatrickH said...

Man, I hate the use of metric for height. Up here in Canada, we actually have a de facto Imperial/metric hybrid, with temperatures pretty well understood in Celsius, and so on. But height remains firmly in the Imperial camp. Everyone uses feet and inches to describe height, even young 'uns. It's five ten, five four, six two. Even in personals, even in hipster talk.

So why the fark is the guy using metric measurements for height? Is he Brit? Do they use that? Man, I hate that! I hate it! 1.88 m? 2.08 m? Those mean next to nothing, and not just to this old codger.

I sure as hell hope he's not American. What a worthless traitor he'd be then.

Grumpy Old Man said...

What about regression towards the mean?

Anonymous said...

If it were really eugenics they would have let them have more than one or two kids! With regression toward the mean Yao Ming could easily have ended up shorter than his dad (technically, shorter than the mother-father midpoint measured in standard deviations).

Lucius Vorenus said...

Steve Sailer: By the way, I don't know why all the blank lines between paragraphs on my blog have suddenly disappeared, but, following the success of my strategy for dealing with the recent Sitemeter-Blogger-Firefox imbroglio -- not doing a damn thing other than hoping the problem goes away by itself -- I resolve to do as little as possible to deal with it.

If you haven't done anything different in how you prep your articles [still using exactly the same version of Microsoft Word/FrontPage/wordpad.exe/notepad.exe as you've always been using], then what's probably happened is that someone at blogger/blogspot has altered a "Cascading Style Sheet" ["CSS"], and that alteration is causing the new behavior.

Just glancing through your code, I see the following style sheets:

http://www.blogger.com/widgets/3319451950-blogarchive.css

http://www.blogger.com/v-css/3727950723-blog_controls.css

http://www.blogger.com/dyn-css/authorization.css

Plus there's another big honking mess of style code under the tag "<style id='page-skin-1' type='text/css'>" and then myriad other "<style>" tags scattered througout the rest of the page.

Anyway, this gets back to the point I've been trying to make for months now: This blogger/blogspot software package is TEH SUX0R, DUDE!

We need to get you on a real software package, with modern forum capabilities [UBB or Slashcode or even JimRob] where we can get some realtime discussions going and you don't have to waste half your day approving or disapproving all these comments, and we, in turn, don't have sit around even longer waiting to learn what got censored and what didn't.

Anonymous said...

The Wikipedia says that Yao Ming himself is married to a basketball player. She's 6'3".

Shouldn't somebody be doing that with smarts instead?

flyingbird said...

Hey Steve, this one had me laughing. Still laughing now...

Listened to 'dancing queen', and some other songs yesterday.I guess I like one of them: "I'm on fire".

Mark said...

Not just Yao Ming, this year.
There's also women's gymanstics All Around gold medalist Nastia Liukin, the daughter of two former champion Soviet gymnasts.

And then there's Michael Phelps, who isn't a eugenics experiment, so far as I know, but whose physical advantages are described on Wikipedia thusly:

Phelps has a body particularly suited to swimming. He has a long, thin torso with arms which span 6 feet 7 inches, disproportionate with his height of 6 feet 4 inches. However, he has relatively short legs which reduce resistance through the water, but despite this he has size 14 feet and double-jointed ankles. He can extend his ankle beyond the point of a ballet dancer which enables him to whip his feet for maximum thrust.

Miss Marple said...

I'm surprised you stopped at the parents when speculating on Yao Ming's genetic make-up. He can't possibly be all Chinese. I suspect he's got at least one very tall Russian grandparent/great-grandparent. And I thought this out well before I encountered Steve Sailor or HBD.

albertosaurus said...

You heard it here first!

I watched Olympic synchronized diving the other day on TV. The point of this event is for the two divers to execute identical dives.

The Americans and Europeans were good but their body types were often too dissimilar. One diver might be taller or thinner than the other.

The Chinese divers were very, very similar to each other and of course they won.

I predict that right now somewhere in China they are trying to produce twins though cloning for this event.

Steve Sailer said...

"If it were really eugenics they would have let them have more than one or two kids!"

Right, but the full article talks about how after the political tides changed when Deng came to power, Yao Ming's mom was politically persecuted by the restored high ranking sports official she had helped torture during the Cultural Revolution. His parents, relegated to lowly jobs as punishment for his mom's cruelty, barely could earn enough to feed their giant son. They had to turn him over to the basketball bureaucracy that was blackballing him, sending him off to fulltime basketball training as a little boy, just to make sure he got enough to eat.

testing99 said...

Steve -- look at Wordpress. You can get a free blog like Roissy (roissy.wordpress.com) or you can host your own.

I host several sites at Bluehost.com (I don't get a referral, I just like them). They're pretty good, they support Wordpress.

Lucious -- I think Slashcode is probably too much work for Steve. It's great but not an easy install.

Mu'Min M. Bey said...

Thanks for this, Steve, finally a somewhat reliable birthtime for Yao! (Just in case anyone wants to know, "shortly after 7pm, which I took to mean a few minutes after-I set it for 7.03pm CCT-yields an Ascendant of 13 degrees, 2 minutes Aries. Yes, astrology is a passion of mine-a very, very serious one)-and thanks for bringing back up something that I too agree is all but unavoidable by us all. Human Biodiversity is real, w/realworld implications. Merely closing our eyes and cupping our ears will not make it go away, nor will politically correct schemes.

I think the making of Yao also paints an interesting contrast to the way people mate and find each other in China as opposed to here in the States. The idea of arranged marriages is anthema particularly to women, who've been thoroughly worked over in terms of feminist indoctrination, but the record seems to be that by and large, arranged marriages ain't that bad. Anyone have any comments on this?

Finally-Steve, how do you explain Allen Iverson? Given his short stature, he's not supposed to even be in the NBA, much less a force in it. Michael Jordan once said that he was impossible to defend; Shaquille O'Neal once said that he was the toughest man on the court. Comments?

Salaam
Mu

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure if Earl Woods took potential wives out for a putt-putt, but he would have looked for qualities like length of attention span and hand-eye coordination in potential "mothers of Tiger" that would benefit the would be golf star son. Not exactly Singaporean eugenics, true. With respect to the NBA, can the US afford to have this false, stage managed sport dripping with 80s era gloss projected out to the whole world.

Mu'Min M. Bey said...

Anon,
You make an interesting point wrt Earl Woods. I too have no idea as to whether he deliberately choose his Thai wife or not. But we do know his first marriage wasn't all that successful. And the results insofar as Tiger is concerned are undeniable.

As for your comments wrt the NBA, I'm not sure I follow, unless you're concerned w/its image w/Hip Hop overtones. I personally LOVE Hip Hop, and some of my heroes comes from the very era you lament, such as Dr. J, Darryl Dawkins and Moses Malone, to say nothing of Isiah Thomas, and of course, Magic Johnson. In my last post I mentioned Allen Iverson, and I defy anyone to come up w/a harder worker among his peers. His stats, careerwide, speak for themselves. Same deal w/Dennis Rodman, another fave of mine, a rebounding beast regardless of the color of his hair or how many tats he has.

Holla back

Salaam
Mu

sixersfan said...

In my last post I mentioned Allen Iverson, and I defy anyone to come up w/a harder worker among his peers.

Really? Hard worker? A guy most famous for his rant against "prac-tiss"?!?!?

As a lifelong Sixers fan, I celebrated when we finally got rid of that ball hog. Shocking that he can barely win even one playoff game in the Western Conference. He remind me of Michael Vick: absurdly athletic and naturally talented but lacking even the decreased intellect necessary to properly understand his sport.

Kes said...

@ Miss Marple

Actually if you follow Yao Ming's family history (which goes back several generations), they are all Chinese.


@ Mu'Min M. Bey

Arranged marriages are no longer the norm in China.

But mail-order brides that are exploited by rich Americans is another story...

Mu'Min M. Bey said...

Sixersfan,
No doubt you were among the stompdown racist horde that couldn't stand the fact that AI was the best thing the Sixers ever had since 83. Let's see if Elton Brand can even get the Sixers out of the conference, let alone to the championship alone like AI did.

Again, his peers say somthing different: Jordan said he was impossible to defend. This coming from the man who, nearing 40, held the virtually unstoppable Vince Carter to what, barely 20 points?

And Shaq said that AI was the toughest man on the court. As we all know the "Hack-A-Shaq" strategy has been around for years. If anyone knows what its like to get beatup on the floor, its Shaq.

Question, Sixersfan-why would two of the biggest names in the history of the sport say something about a lazy ball hog? Maybe its because THEY actually know something about the game, as evidenced by their multiple NBA championship rings-and you don't?

Oh, and if anyone questions my views on AI's career, check his career stats at the NBA website. By any estimation, no small feat for a small man.

Miss Mable, I was speaking more to an informal thing wrt arranged marriages and not so much along state policy lines. Yao's parents were married in this way, no? I'm just saying that perhaps we Americans need to consider arranged marriages as an option.

But I'm glad you brought up the question of Mail Order Brides, because the Feminist Lobby, which for some reason Sailer just isn't all that interested in, and neither are most of the readers here, have put laws into place that criminalize any man seeking such a bride; he must submit to a battery of criminal background checks and the like, no doubt at his expense, before he can even talk to a woman from another country. This has been discussed elsewhere as a means of American women of radical feminst bent to penalize American men for their mate and sexual choices, and I find it both the height of hypocrisy and un-Americaness, if I can coin a term, for such a thing to go down w/nary a word in protest.

Holla back

Salaam
Mu

sixersfan said...

No doubt you were among the stompdown racist horde that couldn't stand the fact that AI was the best thing the Sixers ever had since 83

Yes I hate Iverson because he's black and I love McNabb, Brian Dawkins, Westbrook and others because they're umm...

I thought this was one place where outcries of racism are absent. I really could care less how many tattoos Iverson has, I only cared that he was not a good player. Well let me qualify that in light of your statements. He's a fantastic talent or, individually, is extremely difficult to gaurd (although let's be honest, 40% FG percentage isn't exactly lighting it up). To be such a sometimes dominant force being so slight of stature is incredible.

But basketball is not about scoring championships. In basketball, unlike any other team sport, a great player can lift their team despite not having a supporting cast. LeBron last year, Kobe's Lakers even making the playoffs after Shaq left, Dwayne Wade in the 2006 Finals while Shaq lumbered down the court are all great examples. Yet, IVerson, supposedly, an all time player could only get his team past the 2nd round ONCE and it was in one of the weakest years (2001) of any conference in memory (let's ignore that it took them 6,7, and 7 games to do it). Iverson takes too many shots and doesn't pass the ball nearly enough to be an effective team member.

So what I'm saying is not contradicted by Jordan and Shaq. They're discussing his physical gifts, not his ability to be a meber of a winning team. Oh and since we're quoting legends, here's Charles Barkley:

"I always worry about players who are one-dimensional, they don't bring anything to the game except they can score." and

He's also criticized him for being a ballhog (calling him "Allen Me-MYself-and Iverson) and not making his teammates better. Larry Brown, a Hall of Fame coach, tried to get Iverson traided for years before finally just quitting. Oh and how about those Sixers after getting rid of Iverson last year. Went from worst record in the league to a 500 team after letting him go and then this year made the palyoffs, beating the Pistons in 2 games.

(I know this is off-topic somewhat Steve, but please let it be posted!)

Mark said...

The Wikipedia says that Yao Ming himself is married to a basketball player. She's 6'3". Shouldn't somebody be doing that with smarts instead?

Jog on down to your local synagogue or country club. They've been doing it for centuries.

Anonymous said...

WRT Iverson, he does not have a good work ethic. He is, however, perhaps the quickest man to ever play in the NBA and that is why he is so good (or at least spectacular). Also, he plays taller than his height (5'11.25" barefoot per NBA measurements) because he has exceptionally long arms (armspan of 6'3.25"). As a Sixers fan who has seen him play a lot, I do question his effectiveness. While he is spectacular due to his quickness and athletecism, his career field goal percentage is only .426. He scores a lot of points, but he takes too many shots that perhaps he shouldn't.

Mu'Min M. Bey said...

Sixersfan & Anon,
I hope Sailer lets this slide thru too, because I just gotta respond to some of the points made...

OK, first off, McNabb is at best a *good* QB, certainly not spectacular. Even Sailer said this himself. Dawk is the man, no doubt. Westbrook plays better than expectations, given his small size at his position, but no Superbowl team has done it w/a man as small as he at the RB slot.

Now, having gotten that out of the way, let's consider the facts.

Larry Brown f*cked up several major trades where he could've gotten players that could actually help AI, like PAUL PIERCE, a real, legitimate Small Forward who is effective on both ends of the floor, unlike the utter GARBAGE that Brown handpicked for the AI era teams. Like Randall, AI had no one to pass to, and even when he did, what were they gonna do w/the ball, especially against West Coast teams? Sure, Brown's picks were hard on defence-and while I'm here just let me add that AI is among the all time leaders in steals-but basketball is just as much about offense, and the truth is the AI era Sixers simply didn't have much offensive power other than AI.

Brown refused to do what Phil Jackson did in Jordan, build a core nucleus around him. Jordan, when Pippen and Rodman came along was virtually unstoppable thanks to the infamous Triangle offense. Brown's style of play was becoming ill suited for a new breed of players, who were bigger and stronger, to say nothing of faster, on both ends of the floor.

You say Brown was able to work magic w/the Pistons, but the truth is that they were a better team 1 thru 5 than the AI era Sixers, and anyone who knows just a little bit about ball will tell you that. From Point Guard to Center they had all the pieces. Sixersfan, when AI was w/the Sixers circa 200-2002, who in the league would have picked ANY of those guys, other than AI, for starters? To ask the question is to answer it.

Again, what Shaq and Jordan said about Iverson can't be in dispute. They know the man, have played against him for years. AI is one of the FEW men who can go one on one w/Jordan and come out on the winning side. It took both Kobe AND Shaq to put down a battered and severly bruised, AI-led Sixers in the NBA Finals in 01.

Simply put, Brown eviscerated the Sixers from top to bottom, made extremely bad trades and draft choices that cost the Sixers crazy millions they couldn't get rid of, and refused to build around Iverson, THEN tried to make AI something he wasn't, a blue collar defensive specialist. If anyone should know about natural talents, its this group, so how can anyone here w/a straightface even question those facts. AI ain't a donkey, he's a thoroughbread. Let him run.

All I'm saying is that for a man so small he's made an indeliable stamp on the gameand he did that not by mere posing and tats and Hip Hop music, but by hard play on he court. Interview any NBA baller of any repute-Wade, James, Shaq, Kobe-and they'll tell you the deal. AI's warrior on the floor who wants to win and actually is willing to help his team do it.

And lastly, w/all due respect, no Sixersfan, don't get it twisted, if you're a pro athelete your goal, your reason for being, is to WIN A CHAMPIONSHIP.

Period.

Salaam
Mu

Miss Marple said...

"Miss Mable, I was speaking more to an informal thing wrt arranged marriages and not so much along state policy lines. Yao's parents were married in this way, no? I'm just saying that perhaps we Americans need to consider arranged marriages as an option. " - Mu

I don't know how I got dragged into this with my speculation on Yao's possible non-chinese ancestors but now that you've asked for my opinion, I can't resist. : )

1st
There are plenty of women for American men. The chances are good a male who can't find a wife among his own people is defective. Generally a guy who has to seek out some ignorant, poverty-stricken woman for a wife does so because he believes she will overlook his flaws out of a sense of gratitude. This means a guy who needs to change is trying to avoid the kind of healthy adult relationship that will require him to be a better person - a situation that isn't good for him, his mail order bride or any children resulting from the marriage.

2nd
If we were to start arranging marriages, what would be the criteria? Such marriages have traditionally been related to the socio-economic status of the families involved and have nothing to do with eugenics. Granted the focus on erotic love or a misguided belief that someone who agrees with everything you say (in order to get laid) is your soulmate has not been a successful basis for marriage in the past 40 years or so but the status based arranged marriage errs in the opposite extreme, too much emphasis on adolescent wish-fulfillment fantasies in the former, the total sacrifice of individual needs for socio-economic status in the later.

I think you want to be a wise man, Mu, so think on this carefully. I don't believe there's some sort of feminist conspiracy preventing men from gaining access to foreign brides and you don't either.

- KES

I understand that the Chinese people aren't a completely homogenous group so perhaps Yao descends from a lesser known subpopulation that is both taller and hardier than the Chinese typically encountered in America.

Mu'Min M. Bey said...

Miss Marple,
First off I have to apologize, I meant to address my remarks to Kes and got the names mixed up. Second, I have to say "my bad" for mangling your name. Hopefully, I got all the particulars straight, LOL.

OK-I think your comments wrt arranged marriages, especially the Mail Order Bride thing, is skewed in the typical feminist script fashion. First off, not all such women are living hand to mouth, I happen to know many, many people in India, Europe and parts of Asia who get hooked up this way, and often the women are highly educated and so are the guys. I attended a wedding sometime back where a White man married a Laotian woman and the match was arranged by the families. By all accounts, more than a decade later, they're doing just fine, kids and all.

Moreover, I find such a stance as you laidout is a one way street-no one would dare suggest that single women who get the Turkey Baster treatment are losers who can't deal w/reality and adult relationships; quite the contrary, they're seen as excersing their options as single, independent women.

I wholeheartedly DO feel that the Feminist Lobby-and make no mistake, it does exist-wants to penalize men's sexual and mate selection choices. And its not just in the area of Mail Order Brides, it has to do w/strip clubs and the like. Now, just for the record I don't make use of these outlets myself, I don't need to. But I have good single friends who should have every right to happiness and fulfillment and PRIVACY as I do, and I see nothing wrong w/a guy who's fed up w/the BS a lot of American women have w/them exercising his options elsewhere. And he should be able to do that w/o undergoing criminal background checks and the like, on his dime no less! Whatever happened to Freedom of Association? Right to Privacy? Right to Autonomy?

So much of the discussion surrounding marriage is Gynocentric, and what I'm saying is that there's more than one end of the conversation.

I thank you for the parting shot compliment, I think.;) and I would like to return it on you. Think what I'm saying over.

And holla back:)

Salaam
Mu

Anonymous said...

What about regression towards the mean?

Regression to the mean doesn't *guarantee* that the offspring of two tall parents will be less tall than their midpoint. It only states that this is *more probable*.

Formally, let X = offspring height in standard deviation units and Y = midparent height in SD units. If there is a linear relationship (a critical assumption, valid in the case of height), then the conditional expectation formula is:

E[X|Y] = rY, with |r| less than or equal to 1.

(note that X and Y are both z-scores here).

Because |r| is not greater than one in this formula, on average the child value will be less than the parental value. But that's only on average.

You can flip it around and point out that in order to have an extremely tall son, the chances become monotonically better as the midparent height increases. This is the basic eugenic principle at play here, and is mostly common sense.


how do you explain Allen Iverson

A good theory accounts for most data points, not all of them. Height is a predictor of success in the NBA, not a guarantee.

Anonymous said...

Most Chinese in America are from the south. Northerners are generally bigger and taller. How can people so obsessed with race and human biodiversity be so ignorant of basic facts? You need only ask a random Chinese person to learn this.

Tsoldrin said...

It appears that these Chinese eugenicists may have stumbled onto something like 'hybrid vigor' (heterosis) similar to that which is seen in Ligers, where two different factors (in this case, genes promoting growth from one parent and a lack of growth inhibitors from the other) affecting size combine to make the offspring larger than either parent.

I'll speculate that one of Yao's parents is of partial Russian descent. The surname 'Yao' was apparently taken by some ethnic Russians living in China. See the wiki page for 'Albazinians'. Albazin would appear to fall into the category of cold but not freezing, where larger people are usualy found, giving him a pro-size factor from that parent. The other parent, for whatever reason, seems to lack the growth inhibiting factors seen in so many Chinese, which is apparently usually a beneficial trait in a place where people are perpetually in some state of starvation. The combination gives him a 'leg up' in the size department.

At one time, an army of such giants might have been something, but in modern times they would likely be more trouble than they are worth. Specialized equipment and vehichles would be prohibitive, and they'd make a much easier target to aim at. Also, there may be fertility factors. Many hybrids are sterile.

Truth said...

Allen Iverson averages 6.3 assists and 3.8 rebounds a game for his career and has led the league in steals twice.

miss marple said...

"The surname 'Yao' was apparently taken by some ethnic Russians living in China. See the wiki page for 'Albazinians'." - tsoldrin

My guess was that the Chinese and Russians were intermingling since they were both communist nations. The details about what appears to be a correct guess on my part are much more fascinating. Thanks for explaining the connection.

"Moreover, I find such a stance as you laidout is a one way street-no one would dare suggest that single women who get the Turkey Baster treatment are losers who can't deal w/reality and adult relationships..." - Mu

Have you been reading Vonnegut's Galapagos? Or did some woman reject your parenting skills for said Turkey Baster? Such imagery, Mu!

"You need only ask a random Chinese person to learn this." - anonymous

I thought about this approach but it seemed to derail from the get-go. "Hey, you, Chinese looking person, you got any tall Chinese or are they all short like you?" Best to come to iSteve to find out about this stuff.

Anonymous said...

“Most Chinese in America are from the south. Northerners are generally bigger and taller.”

These Northerners being bigger than Southerners is a very common theme in the world. In India North Indians tend to be bigger than South Indians. North East Asians tend to be bigger than South East Asians. I wonder if there is a similar distribution in size among Native Americans as Native Americans of the American plains tend to look bigger than Native Americans from the tropics. Northern Europeans tend to be bigger than Southern Europeans. In other words People living in colder climates tend to be bigger than people living in the tropics. Sub Saharan Africans and some Pacific Islanders stand out as exceptions.