Back when your dad was a rebellious teenager, smoking was still seen as cool rather than a horrible vice that attracts disapproving glares from everyone nearby. But it turns out that, in addition to making him a walking cancer time-bomb, your father's prepubescent James Dean imitation is now making you fat.
As it turns out, there's a downside to this sort of behavior.
Scientists examined the records of 14,024 fathers, 166 of whom smoked before age 11. The sons of prepubescent smokers had a much higher body mass index at nine years old than their peers with nonsmoking fathers. The reason for this seems to lie within a new field of science called epigenetics.
Epigenetics is the study of how short-term environmental factors can be passed down to your offspring. The reason this phenomenon is specific to your father is because males don't start producing sperm until puberty, while females are born with their whole clutch of eggs. If your dad smoked before puberty, then he triggered changes in his own body that later translated to producing mutant freak-sperms.
On the plus side, your dad's leather jacket, sidelong don't-give-a-fuck glances and billowing cigarette smoke probably helped him get laid in the first place. But the sperm that grew up to become you was one fat bastard. And not only did it doom you to a life of sausage-fingers and sweating while you eat, but it's probably given you a shorter lifespan to boot.
The field of epigenetics is opening up a whole new world of discoveries about the myriad ways your parents screwed you before birth, and in a few years, it may spawn a sequel to this article a thousand entries long. According to Time magazine, the epigenome project "will make the Human Genome Project look like homework that 15th century kids did with an abacus." It will almost certainly also lead to some awkward conversations with our parents.
And, once again, whiskey has our back.
See how else your parents have impacted you (this time for the worse) in our new book.
And see how else your parents are shaping you in 7 Things 'Good Parents' Do (That Screw Up Kids For Life) and 8 Insane Ways Parents Are Politically Brainwashing Children.
And stop by Linkstorm to see how many of the columnists really should've been girls.
And don't forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to get sexy, sexy jokes sent straight to your news feed.
Do you have an idea in mind that would make a great article? Then sign up for our writers workshop! Do you possess expert skills in image creation and manipulation? Mediocre? Even rudimentary? Are you frightened by MS Paint and simply have a funny idea? You can create an infograpic and you could be on the front page of Cracked.com tomorrow!