I am missing, because it’s too hot. But I’ll be back tomorrow.
Archive for July 30, 2008
Remember Sea Monkeys? They used to advertise them in the American Marvel comics I got as a kid (expensive, imported items, but with a psychedelic gloss and glamour lacking in our own homegrown funny books). You could send away and you’d receive a Sea Monkey Kit. You grew them from seeds, like Dr. Praetorius in THE BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN, and judging by those illustrations, they were sure to be LOTS OF FUN.
Despite my parents pointing out the small print that admitted the illustrations were merely an “artist’s impression” (read: colossal fib), I had to have me some sea monkeys, so I sent away for them.
What a disappointment! The sea monkeys, once planted in a water tank so they could grow to full size, scarcely resembled the lovable, anthropomorphized figures in the cartoon. For a start, they were ENORMOUS. Each sea monkey child was the height of a full-grown man, while the towering, antlered heads of the adults scraped our ceilings, leaving pink slime trails on the plaster. The wily artist had concealed this important information by never picturing the sea monkeys beside a familiar object that would give them a sense of scale.
Furthermore, while the artists was able to stay within the bounds of strict accuracy by showing the sea monkeys smiling, he created a false impression of friendliness and domesticity by doing so. In fact, the smile of the sea monkey is a sign of its aggression, the teeth bared only when it is about to commit a savage attack upon some perceived rival. The fiercely territorial creatures had soon driven myself and my family out of doors. The only way we could retain some slender possession of “our” home was to camp on the roof.
We called the exterminators from a neighbour’s house, but the sea monkeys, adept at legal matters like all their kind, asserted squatter’s rights, and it took weeks before the case could be heard. Thanks to a smart lawyer of our own, Mr. MacAnno, of MacAnno, MacRammy & MacIsmo, we were finally able to have them gassed.
A more realistic portrait of a sea monkey.