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Deep Thoughts Caused by Sea Life
by Lovemonkey Jolie
I asked a guy at work how his weekend was.
And because of my indulgence in polite conversation, he proceeded to tell me about his aquarium and the worm problem.
He said something about worms coming out at night, and I thought about how sinister worms are really. And then I considered that maybe there was nothing nefarious about this nocturnal behavior at all. Maybe worms just realize how truly ugly they are and choose to hide in the shadows rather than listen to the constant shrieking and screaming during normal business hours.
I continued to think about worms and their appearance at night and I may have even thought about worms that live inside humans, you know, like pin worms, until I heard him mention the anemones. He said the anemones usually allow him to pull them from the rocks but for some reason the other day they were suddenly holding on tight and when he pulled, they - well sort of fell apart.
"Ohhh, " I said, horrified. Justifiably.
"Don't worry," he said. "They'll grow back."
And I thought, how great it would be to suddenly find myself a creature that could be ripped apart and simply grow back, as if nothing had happened. And I wondered how that would be for all of us - if it were that commonplace - the norm. Let's say we were to suddenly lose part of an arm. You know, over the weekend. Who knows how or why. We'd come to work Monday morning with one full arm and a half arm. Others might already be walking around with a full arm and the beginnings of another arm - like maybe a hand dangling from the shoulder. We'd say, "Oh sorry, had a rough weekend. Going to be a bit of a problem for a while but not for long. I should have fingers in about a week. Don't worry." And our co-workers would nod and groan in sympathy and we'd all get on with it.
We'd learn to adjust and marketing geniuses would come to our aid with keyboards on flexible, adjustable arms designed to enable our short armed fingers to reach our computers. Forks with extra long handles would be invented, and hands-free devices would fly off the shelves causing another Cabbage Patch Kid like frenzy, minus the bloating, bulgy eyes and just plain ugliness.
But on the upside, during romantic interludes one hand would never be far from our lover's face. And maybe our lovers would secretly wish that particular arm would never grow back. And then maybe they'd change their mind because of the heavy lifting. Who knows.
The co-worker continued to talk about aquariums and rocks and coral and all things oceanic and I have always enjoyed a good aquarium as long as it was in someone else's house and as long as I was not expected to have anything whatsoever to do with the well-being of it's inhabitants, so I listened politely, moderately interested in sea life suddenly. He talked about buying special fish whose whole purpose in life is to eat these worms who are killing his coral, but instead he found the fish hanging out with the worms, staying up late at night, playing poker and smoking seaweed.
That story inspired a comical painting on the canvas of my brain - it was similar to Elvis on velvet or those dogs smoking cigars paintings only no dogs, but lots of worms and no cards because worms don't have hands and in my painting all their little worm martini glasses had tiny straws in them. The fish, on the other hand, was drinking beer from a can because he has fins and a dislike for vodka.
And even though talk of worms and worm eating fish is more than enough inspiration to entertain me for hours, my thoughts kept returning to the anemones and how tightly they hold on. How they refuse to separate - how they allow themselves to be ripped apart and how much that must hurt, yet all the while they know these parts will return, every finger, every toe, every missing everything.
And they know that eventually, someday the numbness will fade and the feelings will return and so will the desire to grab hold of something tightly and simply refuse to let it go.
Lovemonkey lives in a pineapple under the sea ...