Monday, December 20, 2010

Fern Rap


Several of my fellow TAs in the Botany Department are teaching Introductory Biology this semester, a giant, 1,000-student mega-class. One of the professors offered the students the opportunity to write a song to get extra credit... and one of the results is an absolutely phenomenal effort by a group of these students. My fellow grads let me know about it, for soon-to-be-obvious reasons, and the professor gave me the audio file and permission to post it here. I hope you'll join me in appreciation of these students' efforts and their scientifically accurate (but for a tiny detail or two) composition putting the fern life cycle to song. I (well actually they) give you the Fern Rap.

video

For your reading/following-along pleasure, here arethe lyrics:


I’m a fern in the world, just trying to grow

Fertilization and cell division is all that I know

I just want to survive and spread my spores

And know I’m not a peach but my life is hard core


They say I’m a monilophyte but you can call me a fern

My life’s been a long one, with many twists and turns

Sometimes it’s hard to discern what stage I’m in

Let me welcome you to my world, let the story begin

I started out as a spore, on the bottom of a leaf

Grew up in a sporophyte, my release was a relief

I had many brothers and sisters, and some of them didn’t make it

But sometimes life is hard, and the goal is just to stay fit

I was a small little guy, all alone and homeless

But I soon started to grow I guess you could say mitosis

And pretty soon fertilization became my focus

But I knew finding a mate for me was pretty much hopeless


I’m a fern in the world, just trying to grow

Fertilization and cell division is all that I know

I just want to survive and spread my spores

And know I’m not a peach but my life is hard core


So I fertilized myself just not to remain childless

I really didn’t care that all my kids would be homozygous

It really wasn’t hard there was no pandemonium

I just put sperm from my antheridia into my archegonium

So now I was a zygote, yeah from 1N to two

The best years of my life, and upwards I grew

The increase in my size was all in my genetics

And it also didn’t hurt that I was photosynthetic

I grew and I grew and it seemed like overnight

I reached my final stage and became a sporophyte

So now I’m making sporangium all on my own

And just hoping my little spores, will all find a home