IF I WAS GREEN I WOULD DIE

When listening one of my favourite bedtime podcasts   No such thing as a fish  I started Googling about an interesting family - the Fugates, who will be referred to as 'the Blugates' in this article.

French born orphin Martin Fugate settled in the small riverside town called Troublesome Creek, Kentucky, USA around 1820. On declaring himself a bonafide suiter, Martin met, and began courting, a local fair-skinned human named Elizabeth Smith. They had quite a lovely flirtation, pottering along riverbanks, ending sentences with "Oh! I never!" which eventually lead to marriage. 

Once consummation was out of the way, the two enjoyed several months of gleeful pantsing before Elizabeth fell pregnant.  When their son Zachariah was born Martin realised his darling Elizabeth had been hiding a moderately dark secret in her loins...

She had a magical avatar Vagina - As in James Cameron 'avatar' not the tiny internet pictures.

Despite the initial blue shock of baby Zachariah, Martin wasn't put off and their family grew. In the end they had a litter of 7- 4 of which resenbled little cookie monsters.

 

This coloured-in historical photograph depicts Martin Fugate and his family of Troublesome Creek circa 1820 - Image source: ABCnewsGO

This coloured-in historical photograph depicts Martin Fugate and his family of Troublesome Creek circa 1820 - Image source: ABCnewsGO

The family continued to grow and partially in-breed (normal back then) but by all accounts were a very normal lot. Apart from occasionally coming out blue.

Family tree of Marty and Liz Fugate - Image source:  Indiana.edu by Cathy Trost

Family tree of Marty and Liz Fugate - Image source:  Indiana.edu by Cathy Trost

The family couldn't avoid drawing the attention of researchers, curious strangers, yelling drunkards and petrified children. Then came Madison Carwein, a Kentucky based Hematologist who tracked down the 'blue hill people of Troublesome Creek', having been thrilled by rumours of their existence. Long story short, Carwein teamed up with a medical nurse, and fellow Blugate fascinatee named Ruth Pendergrass. The two studied the Blugates, testing blood samples and pondering over diagnosis and potential 'cure' for their blueness. The hue changed dramatically when Carwein and Pendergrass hypothesised: an injection of Methylene Blue would react with the Blugate's complexion, potentially turning their skin a more natural pink colour.
 
The pair of rounded up two Blugate family members named Patrick and Rachel Ritchie and promptly injected them with 100mg of Methylene Blue. Carwein recalled "within a few minutes... For the first time in their lives they were pink! They were delighted".  He prescribed them with a daily dose of Methylene Blue in pill form. It was expensive and reasonably inneffective. The family returned to their original aesthetic.

The Blugate family line continued to grow, thrive and be invited to weddings by brides who already had something old, borrowed and new.

Cathy Trost wrote a fantastic paper about the Blugates... For further reading I recommend it and this part of John Curra's book 'The relativity of deviance'.