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The Sound Kitchen

Our unique and individual fingerprints

Audio 12:50
David Franklin/Getty Images/A Terrade

This week on The Sound Kitchen you’ll hear the answer to the question about fingerprints. There’s listener news, great music, and of course, the new quiz question. Just click on the arrow in the photo and enjoy!


Hello everyone!

Welcome to The Sound Kitchen. You can catch the programme on-the-air every Saturday at 6:15, 7:15, 14:45 and 16:45 universal time. You’ll hear the winner’s names announced and the week’s quiz question, along with all the other ingredients you have grown accustomed to: your letters and essays, “On This Day”, quirky facts and news, interviews and great music, so be sure and tune in every Saturday.

For our DX enthusiast friends: Our shortwave frequency is 11830 kHz on the 25m band, from 06.00 to 07.00 UT every day. We’ve had reception reports from Algeria, Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Columbia, Cuba, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, India, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Sierra Leone, Slovenia, Sweden, the United Arab Emirates, Ukraine, the UK and the US, and although the frequency is “aimed” (or however that works) towards the African continent, give it a try. You never know … and be sure and send us your reception reports. Maybe we can get more time, which would be wonderfulYou can also hear our programs on WRMI ( and WRN ( These broadcasters diffuse our programs out of the goodness of their hearts, but unless you tell us how you heard us we have no way of knowing … so do write and tell us how you listen to us.

Fabulous News! We now have an RFI English newsletter! On the very top of our homepage, there’s a little tab that says “Newsletters”. Click on it and fill out the form, and every day you’ll receive the latest from the RFI English website.

We look forward to seeing all your names on our brand-new subscriber’s list. And congratulations to our web team for making it happen. Way to go David, Tony and Isabelle!

We want to hear from you. We have a phone number you can call to leave us a message, so we can hear your voice. Just call, give your name, your country, and a short message - something like “I love RFI”, because of course you do – and we can put you on-the-air. The number to call is: + 33 1 84 22 95 82.

A hearty welcome to two new official RFI Listeners Clubs. There’s the Divin-Alam RFI Club in Alim-Fundong, Cameroon, with Njang Marinette Njong as president, and the Naz RFI and Internet Fan Club in Faisal Abad, Pakistan, with Rasheed Naz as president. Additionally, the Hope Yang RFI Club in Njinikom, Cameroon, Jinabo Cyrille Fointama, president, has just added new members - so welcome to you too, new Hope Yangers!

That brings us up to 53 official RFI Clubs across the world – we are so pleased!

If you would like to create an official RFI club or transform your existing listeners club into an RFI club, click on the link below for information on how to get started.

We have new RFI Listeners Club members to welcome, too: there’sDavid A B Konneh from Monrovia, Liberia; Francis Sundima Tucker from The Gambia, and Preeti Bhatta, from Murshidabad, India. Welcome welcome welcome!

So glad you have joined us!

You too can be a member of the RFI Listeners Club – just write me at and tell me you want to join, and I’ll send you a membership number. It’s that easy. When you win a Sound Kitchen quiz as an RFI Listeners Club member, you receive a premium prize.

The Fourth Annual RFI Clubs Football Tournament is underway! RFI provides footballs, jerseys and trophies to RFI Clubs who want to organize their own tournaments to correspond with the World Cup games, and several RFI English Clubs signed up. You’ll see their photos on our Facebook pages and hear about their matches on The Sound Kitchen, so be sure and tune in every week.

RFI Clubs: Be sure to always include Audrey Iattoni ( from our Listener Relations department on all your RFI Club correspondence. Remember to copy me ( when you write her so that I know what is going on, too.

We’ve made a Facebook page just for you, the RFI English Clubs. It is a closed group, so when you apply to join, be sure you include the name of your RFI Club and your membership number. Everyone can look at it, but only members of the group can post on it. If you haven’t yet asked to join the group, go to and fill out the questionnaire !!!!! (if you do not answer the questions, I click “decline”).

Are you interested in forming an official RFI Club, or transforming your existing club into an official RFI Club?  Here’s how:

This week’s quiz: On 5 May, I asked you a question that Mogire Machuki (the president of the RFI Fan Club in Kissi, Kenya) suggested. He was wondering about fingerprints, and why no two people have the same fingerprints – not even identical twins (Mogire is the father of identical twins, by the way). I read up on it, and decided upon this as the question:  How old is a fetus – the baby still in its mother’s womb - when his or her fingerprints are completely and totally formed, his or her unique and individual fingerprints, forever and ever?

The answer is:17 weeks. As to why no two individuals have the same fingerprints is a little complex; here’s a short answer from the “Science ABC” website (when you want an explanation and you’re not too scientifically minded – like me – this is the address).

“Fingerprint pattern formation consists of two components: developmental and genetic. The ridge pattern development not only depends on genetic factors but also on unique physical conditions. So even if identical twins are genetically similar, the pressure faced by the fetus in the womb can affect their fingerprints. Even the difference in the length of umbilical cord can make changes to the fingerprints.”

Fascinating, isn’t it?

The winners are: Raihan Ali, a member of the Nilshagor RFI Fan Club in Nilphamari, Bangladesh and Farhan Sadat Biswas, from the Students Oriental Radio Club in Murshidabad, India. There are two RFI Listeners Club members who are winners this week: Heimer Sia from Manila, Philippines and Jahan Ara Hussain from Odisha, India. Last but not least, Abdulai Saiku Bah from Freetown, Sierra Leone, who sent his answer by text to the Sound Kitchen mobile phone.

You can send your quiz answer to the Sound Kitchen mobile phone, too: just dial +  33  6 31  12  96  82. That’s +  33  6  31  12  96  82. Don’t forget to include your postal mailing address, and if you have one, your RFI Listeners Club membership number.

Congratulations winners!

Here’s the music you heard on this week’s program: Yevhen Hrebinka : “Dark Eyes”, arranged and performed by Tony Green and the Tony Green Trio; Rimsky-Korsakov: “The Flight of the Bumblebee” and Papa Wembe’s “Yolele”, performed by Papa Wembe and his orchestra.

Do you have a musical request? Send it to

This week’s question ... You'll have to listen to the show to participate. You have until 20 August to enter this week's quiz. The winners will be announced on the 25 August program. When you enter, be sure you send your postal address in with your answer, and if you have one, your RFI Listeners Club membership number.

Send your answers to:


Susan Owensby

RFI – The Sound Kitchen

80, rue Camille Desmoulins

92130 Issy-les-Moulineaux



By text … You can also send your quiz answers to The Sound Kitchen mobile phone. Dial your country’s international access code, or “ + ”, then  33 6 31 12 96 82. Don’t forget to include your mailing address in your text – and if you have one,your RFI Listeners Club membership number.

To find out how you can win a special Sound Kitchen prize, click here:

To find out how you can become a member of the RFI Listeners Club, or to form your own official RFI Club, click here:

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