The Cousin Explainer

Trying to determine all the relationships of all your relatives at a Christmas gathering? A tea towel can help.

As described on the web site where you can order the towel:

“Second cousin once removed, or first cousin twice removed? Calculating cousin-hood has never been easier with this brilliant tea towel. Finally you can establish which of your cousins are once, twice or even thrice removed. A hand lettered design by Geoff Sawers.”

These must be popular as the web site says they are sold out but more are expected to become available soon. You can add your email address to a mailing list that will notify you when more of the towels become available. Pricing isn’t mentioned.

The web site at is in the United Kingdom so I suspect there will be some significant charges for deliveries to other countries.


Since this appears to be from the UK, I’m sure the price will be pounds. How does one purchase foreign items with US credit cards?


    —> How does one purchase foreign items with US credit cards?

    You simply enter your US credit card number into the order form and the UK merchant receives the funds in his or her local currency.

    Some years ago, I worked for a credit card processing company and learned more about credit cards than I ever wanted to know. (smile) With a very few exceptions, most credit cards are accepted worldwide.

    Most issuing banks and credit card companies may add on an extra foreign exchange fee to the cardholder’s bill, typically 1% or 2% to each transaction in a foreign country. I have been to the UK 30 or 35 times and to numerous other countries as well. I always use my VISA card from United Airlines to pay for most everything when I am outside the US simply because that card doesn’t charge any foreign exchange fee at all. A few other credit cards also will not charge a fee for conversion to a foreign currency but certainly not all of them. Those fees do add up!

    It does pay to read the small print in the credit card agreement before signing up for a credit card!


Search the Internet for cousin and you will get the same info


Enterprising fellow, but the chart is hardly original in concept. There are several online versions that can be copied for no charge.


A technical way to measure relationships is called cM, or centiMorgans.
yourdnaguide dot com/scp
According to 23andMe, a DNA cousin shares 169 cM (centiMorgans); The “Tech Geneticist”, sent this interactive relationship calculator in response to my question. dnapainter dot com/tools/sharedcmv4
The tool indicates that my cousin and I could be ‘Half 1C’, but not ‘1C’.
I’m new to genetics, but I suspect that you, and the “Tech Geneticist” are using the concept of ‘Half’ in entirely different ways. (Remember the twins arguing in the old TV commercial? “Certs is a candy mint”. “Certs is a breath mint”; and the announcer chiming in: “STOP, you are both right!”.
My goal to determine if this cousin could be statistically demonstrated to be the daughter of a particular sailor by a casual encounter, is met.
I’m still looking for the crew manifest, placing my maternal uncle in the right port at the right time, to provide further weight to how we might be related. But now I have enough reason to sift through hundreds and hundreds of pages, because there IS a chance that I might find his name.
(P.S. Your note below: “You may use these XXXX tags and attributes:” could use clarification, for non-techies. I have pared down everything I can think of, and my post has been rejected four times, before now.)


—> How does one purchase foreign items with US credit cards?
There can be traps with card acceptability in undeveloped countries.
When I was in Zambia in 2014 the Sonacco ATMs displayed Visa signs, but would not recognise my Visa card, issued in Australia. Sonacco ATMs were quite common in major towns throughout the country. I was in the Serenje area for several weeks. As it is a regional capital fortunately there was a bank whose ATM did accept my Visa card, but elsewhere a Sonacco ATM could have been the only one available.
And at that time it seemed that relatively few ATMs in that part of Africa accepted Mastercard – Visa was far more widespread. I didn’t find any in Lusaka, but as Livingstone is a tourist area I found a Mastercard ATM there.


    —> There can be traps with card acceptability in undeveloped countries.

    True. Also, I wrote “With a very few exceptions, most credit cards are accepted worldwide.” I remember from my days in the credit card business that a number of credit cards issued in third-world countries were not accepted in very many other countries. The reason is that those countries had a high theft rate. The company I worked for would not accept credit cards issued in Indonesia, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, the Philippines, and a few other countries.

    However, that would still be a small percentage of all the cards issued worldwide. For anyone from a developed country who is traveling in a developed country, there shouldn’t be much of a problem.


    Thank you for your reply. Fortunately, these tea towels are not coming from Africa.


Please let me know when ‘coysin’ T towels are in stock.


Looking for cousin towel


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