Predictions about Heller Kids: 1987

In 1987, on the occasion of Karen's marriage, Steve conducted a survey asking a number of family members to predict the order of marriage for the Heller kids and to predict the number of children each would produce. Almost twenty years later, during the summer of 2006, Leslie dug up a copy of this document. It's interesting to consider the predictions now that all the kids are married, all have had children, and all seem to be finished accumulating the next generation. The original document is reproduced next, followed by some re-analysis.

Predictions of Marriage Order
Numbers of Children
for the
Heller Kids

Survey Information
PsychicFirst #kidsSecond #kidsThird #kidsFourth #kids
MomKaren 2Leslie 2Neil 1Steve 6
DadKaren 1Neil 2Leslie 3Steve 4
KarenKaren 3Neil 3Leslie 1Steve 2
SteveKaren 2Neil 3Leslie 4Steve 2
LeslieKaren 2Neil 2Steve 4Leslie 4
NeilKaren 3Steve 4Neil 1Leslie 4
AnyuciKaren 3Steve 4Neil 5Leslie 6
DavidKaren 3Leslie 4Neil 2Steve 2
GeorgetteKaren 2Neil 3Leslie 2Steve 3
JudyKaren 3Steve 3Neil 3Leslie 3
StephenKaren 3Neil 2Leslie 0Steve 3

Summary Information
# Kids
# Kids


  1. The Race is On. Neil is clearly next on the chopping block. Last place, however, seems to be a close call, with Leslie's lack of second place finishes balanced by Steve's majority of fourths. The most popular order placed Neil second and Steve last.
  2. Children's Children. The women uniformly predicted more children for themselves than they were awarded by the survey. And the inverse is true for the men. (It would not be appropriate to use the terms girls and boys in this context.) So we can conclude that women love children, and men hate them. Then again, who wants a fractional kid. The nuclear-proliferation award goes to Steve, with three and four-tenths kids, on the average. I can't help but notice that Karen and Stephen are on the same wavelength. The non-Heller-kid wavelength award does to David, for coming closest to the self predicted # kids. Finally, note that Anyuci is expecting (pun intended) more great grandchildren (18!) than anyone is claiming responsibility for.

Re-Analysis (Summer 2006)

At the time of the survey, Karen married Steve, and now they have one child. Next Neil married Debbie, and now they have three children; Steve married Debbie, and now they have three childen; and Leslie married Evan, and now they have two children. At Leslie's wedding Nagypapa joyfully declared, "Mission accomplished!"

  1. The Race is Over. The most popular predicted marriage order: Karen, Neil, Leslie, Steve was slightly off, as Leslie clung longest to her independence. And only Leslie predicted the ultimate order correctly. One wonders if she delayed her nuptials to make this prediction come true. Hmmm. Note that the number of new names introduced by spouses has been minimal.
  2. Children's Children. Noone predicted the exact number of offspring, but Tante Georgette came very close, only off by one. Note also that none of the kids correctly predicted the number of their own children. Finally, Anyuci, although her great expectations were not met by a factor of two, lived long enough to know about the imminent arrival of Sam and Becca, and she crocheted a baby blanket for each.

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