Bone Up: Keeping It Out of the Family


It’s the classic love story: boy meets girl, boy hooks-up with girl, boy later realizes he’s actually 3rd-cousins with the girl, boy develops serious drinking problem. While it might sound far-fetched, the chances of accidentally hooking up with your cousin are larger than you might think! Here are some tips to use to make sure your next frisky encounter stays out of the family.

Les Cousins Dangereaux

  1. Be very observant – Give your potential hook-up partner (PHUP) a quick once-over looking for any red-flags. A tattoo of your family crest, for example, is a pretty bad sign. A shirt that reads “Kissin’ Cousins” is an indication  that you should probably run for the hills.
  2. Check IDs – Be the bouncer of your bedroom. Not only is this a great way to see if your PHUP is of legal age for your planned shenanigans, but it also provides a wealth of information that can aid you in your investigation. While checking if you have the same last names is the obvious move here, you should also look to see if he/she lives in the same town as your aunt and uncle. If something seems fishy…
  3. Consult your family tree – You can never be too safe in these situations. And nowadays, you don’t even have to raid your grandmas attic to get a hold of heritage! With websites like and, a map of your lineage is a mere click away. If you’re in a pinch, also has it’s own iPhone and Android app for easy access in the dark.
  4. Casually namedrop relatives in conversations – This one got Liz Lemon off the hook. I’d advise trying this before things get dirty. Bad example dialogue: “Damn baby you ever read 50 Shades of Grey? Speaking of gray, your grandma’s name doesn’t happen to be Edna Tuba, does it?”
  5. Ignore everything and embrace it – If FDR, Albert Einstein, and Rudy Giuliani all married their cousins, why shouldn’t you? is chalk-full of solid arguments that attempt to crush the taboo, including the fact that “We are all cousins. No two people are more distantly related than 50th cousins.” Wait, seriously?! I’ve made a huge mistake. This is about to be a doozy of a breakup text.

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