Saturday, December 13, 2008

Sponge Woe

I'm glad I'm not a sponge. The main disadvantage of being one is that, if you're washed up on a beach somewhere, people always have this near atavistic urge to squeeze you out until you're dry. If the practice were applied equally to all washed-up sea creatures - if, 12 months ago, they'd tried to put those sperm whales that were stranded just off the West Florida coast through some sort of giant mangle, for example - then it needn't be an issue. But the fact is, they only ever do it to sponges. Which strikes me as manifestly unfair. I know all this, and more, because I was reading about sponges last night.

Something else I read is that, if you take a sponge and put it into a blender, the resultant goo will eventually turn into another, unique sponge. So in this respect, I suppose it has certain advantages over the aforementioned sperm whale which, under similar circumstances, most probably wouldn't reconstitute.

Then again, I doubt if anyone's ever really tried (where are you going to get a blender big enough to fit a sperm whale?), so you never know. On the down-side, now that the encyclopaedia has gone public with this fact, it's going to most likely encourage people who otherwise wouldn't have done so to put sponges in blenders, if only to see what happens. Which, in the long-term, is probably going to piss off the sponges even more than being habitually squeezed out does. It's not as if they can assuage their frustrations by having spectacular sex, either. This is because, in order to reproduce, a female sponge ejects an ovum, while the male sponge ejects a sperm, and both bits then meet half way between their parents and fertilize. It's boring. The sponge sexual act is the equivalent of going to an orgy but only being a spectator, never a participant.

I suppose, at the instant of fertilization, both sponges could simulate a modicum of excitement by going, "Oh God! Yes! Yes! Yes! Oh ..... Jesus Chisssssst!!!" However, they'd then risk giving their position away to people who wanted to put them in a blender, so, overall, it probably wouldn't be a good idea.

I wonder if a loofah has similar problems? In its natural state, I think it looks not unlike a giant cucumber. I'll bet, thanks to this, quite a few end up mistakenly sliced and put in giant, crust-less sandwiches. I shall investigate the matter further.

No comments: