Married To Darwin

I couldn’t make our writers’ group meeting last Tuesday, but the prompt was (don’t ask me where it came from) “Married to Darwin”….

She heard him running excitedly down the stairs from his study, and groaned inwardly, dreading what new crazy theory he’d come up with. He burst into the room.

“You’re an ape!” he exclaimed.

“And you’re a pig,” retorted Mrs Darwin.

“No, my dear, you don’t understand,” said Darwin, “I’m not calling you an ape – well, I am, but I’m saying that we’re all apes. That’s where we came from.”


“We evolved. Over time we grew our intelligence, lost the need to walk on all fours, gave up swinging from trees.”

“And why do you reckon apes? Why not elephants?”

“No trunk.”


“No stripes.”


“Now you’re just being silly.”

“I’m not the one being silly. You’re the one saying that we used to have arms that reached to the ground and a habit of eating fleas that we dug out from under our armpits.”

“I’ve studied it, and I’m sure. Our ancestors were apes.”

“How far back? Your mother, perhaps?”

Darwin decided to ignore that.

“No, centuries ago. Before that we lived in the sea.”

“Apes lived in the sea? What did we swing out of, shipwrecks?”

“We weren’t apes then. We were fish.” Even as he said it, he knew it sounded daft.

“Really. And how did we – what was your word – evolve? Did we mate with mermaids?”

Darwin, who had been so sure of his theory when he had started down the stairs, began to feel less certain. He was starting to regret descending from his room, much as the apes had regretted descending from the trees into a world filled with bears, snakes and David Attenborough.

“And what about the Ark?” asked Mrs Darwin. “And Adam and Eve?”

Darwin had been dreading this bit. “Didn’t happen, I’m afraid,” he said.

Mrs Darwin, a staunch Catholic, reached for a rolling-pin. Darwin decided it was time to prove his theory of Survival of the Fittest. He ran, out the door and down to the pub.

When he returned, two hours later, he found that Mrs Darwin had gone to bed. She had, however, left his dinner on the kitchen table.

It was a banana.


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