Breaking news: All of our neighbors to the north are apparently related to each other. At least, the famous ones are. Ancestry.com’s genealogical genies have discovered that Justin Bieber shares blood with a cadre of Canadian stars including Belleville, Ontario native Avril Lavigne, Québécois Celine Dion, and Ryan Gosling – who, like Bieber, was born in London. No, not that London.
The links are distant, but they’re there. As the Associated Press summarizes, Bieber and the Crazy, Stupid, Love star are 11th cousins once removed. He and the sk8er grrrl are 12th cousins. All three share two common relatives – a pair of French-born Quebec settlers who were born in the early 1600s. The man, Mathurin Roy, was a twinkly-eyed heartthrob who found himself the subject of the first hand-drawn memes. (“Salut, mademoiselle.”) The woman, Marguerite Bire, bought all her clothes at the 17th century version of Hot Topic and died when her proto-flatiron burst into flames.
Dion and Bieber, on the other hand, are 10th cousins three times removed. They’re both descended from Jacques Vezina and Marie Boisdon, a French couple who came to Quebec in the 1600s. Boisdon was reportedly known throughout the land for her incredible voice and even more incredible faces.
Ancestry.com researcher Michelle Ercanback told the AP that she isn’t sure whether these revelations are “sufficient to point to the existence of a superstar gene.” But if such a gene does exist – but only in Canada – do Canadian celebrities have an advantage over homegrown American stars? Is it fair to force folks from the States to compete with genetic freaks who all share hot French ancestry? Will Avril Lavigne and Chad Kroeger’s hockey-loving children inherit the earth? Is Ryan Reynolds in on this conspiracy as well? What about Rachel McAdams, or Alex Trebek, or Rick Moranis?!
I was raised to think that all Canadians were easygoing, kind, and totally nonthreatening. Now, though – now, I’m not so sure. The revolution is coming, my friends… and it’s going to be televised on CBC.