My college Genetics course is really paying off these days. Recently, I went to a local hand car wash. One of the car washers, a Mexican young man named Jorge, rang up the charges. As I handed him my credit card, I noticed he had not one, but TWO, thumb tips. I did a double take. I've seen typical presentations of polydactyly (more than 10 toes or fingers) as well as "corrected" ones. They too cause one to do a double-take; rub your eyes and silently ask "did I just see 6 fingers on that hand - something is awry". That wasn't the case this time, there was no doubting it - Jorge had a double thumb tip on one hand. His other thumb appeared normal.
When Jorge returned to the office area, I simply asked him if I could look at his thumb (aren't you proud that I took the direct approach?). He was shy about it. His English was poor. But he let me look at it and even touch it! (looking back, I think I should've shaken his hand as a offer of acceptance, introduction)! It felt like a normal thumb. It's as if the bones above the top knuckle thought they were tree branches and split into two.
See for yourself. If you're squeemish or plan to be hatin' on my friend Jorge, don't look. If anyone visits Norwood Car Wash on North Foster Ave in Chicago, keep an eye out. Maybe he'll let you play thumb war.