Canadian Dentist Plans to Clone John Lennon From a Molar He Bought at Auction

Flowers are placed on the mosaic named for the John Lennon's song 'Imagine' December 8, 2015 at Strawberry Fields, the Central Park garden dedicated in his honor, in New York. Today marks the 35th anniversary of the night John Lennon was gunned down by Mark David Chapman outside his home in New York City. AFP PHOTO / TIMOTHY A. CLARY / AFP / TIMOTHY A. CLARY (Photo credit should read TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)
Source: TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images

People are willing to drop excessive amounts of money on all sorts of ridiculous things — midlife crisis mobiles, Burberry dog sweaters — to the point that it's often refreshing when someone whips out their wallet with a noble purpose. Or, well, sometimes. Enter Dr. Michael Zuk, the exception that proves my rule: Zuk, a Canadian dentist, reportedly spent close to $33,000 on one of John Lennon's teeth in order to clone him. No, you did not read that wrong. 

Calling the molar "genetic real estate," Zuk laid out his plans to Britain's Channel 4, explaining how he'll replicate the tragically deceased rock star using extracted DNA as soon as the proper technology is realized — which he is confident will be relatively soon. "He could be looked at as my son but I don’t think I would be the one, you know, owning his property, he would have the rights when he was old enough to make a claim," Zuk explained, with a level of specificity that suggests he has given this at least several hours of conscious thought and still feels comfortable with his choices. In fact, the tooth, which was apparently given by Lennon to his former housekeeper, was sold at auction two years ago; not once in those two years has Zuk's enthusiasm been tempered by the wet blanket of reality. In fact, he's even doubled down on his plan, suggesting multiple clones, because "Well, if it works once it’s going to work again, right?" 

In case the idea of a man with his own personal army of Canadian John Lennons seems troubling — or, rather, the idea of a man who believes this to be possible holding a valid medical license — fear not, because Zuk assured the reporter that he would make for an excellent father: "[The clone] would still be his exact duplicate but you know, hopefully keep him away from drugs and cigarettes, that kind of thing. But you know, guitar lessons wouldn’t hurt anyone right?" Hopefully, Zuk will also be offering a fair weekly allowance and imposing reasonable curfew, because you know how genetically reanimated rockstars get without their full eight hours.

Of course, it's entirely possible that Dr. Zuk is secretly a genius, as opposed to a man trapped inside an 80s B-movie. Maybe someday we'll all kick ourselves for not shelling out tens of thousands of dollars for pieces of our favorite celebs' DNA. ("Don't mind me, Cillian Murphy, just fishing through your trash for a toothbrush...") It is also possible he's spent a little too long inhaling his own nitrus.

Still, in all of this, I think there's a real lesson to be learned: Never give your housekeeper your wisdom tooth as a present (for, like, a lot of reasons). Unless you want to be kept in a Canadian man's drug-free basement and forced to strum out "Imagine" for all eternity, that is.

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