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Why fish don’t have feet

Expiscated on May 7, 2023.

Yesterweek’s misfortunate oppilation, through a bizarre train of events only understandable to those well-versed in esoteric obscurantism and applied coulrology, led to complete and utter depilation. My newly hairless (but regular!) state left me looking a bit like a big baby—if a big, eyebrowless potato could be said to look like a big baby. Indeed, my normally sciurine and occasionally caprine appearance had become thoroughly solanaceous this week. I took to drawing a set of eyebrows onto my embaldened face with the sharpest of Sharpies, but—not being known for my manual dexterity—I ended up with one eyebrow closer to my ear than the other. My attempt to redo the poor thing was only met with further disappointment and tragedy. Now I had three crooked brows.

Worse, my potato-like appearance piqued Becasue no end, who threatened to dump me if I didn’t grow all my hair back at once. It isn’t just potato juice she hates and loathes; she is an all-around potato hater. Of no use were my insistent explanations of the lethargic speed of follicular metabolism, the chemistry and physics of keratin production, and how many beard-seconds it takes to make a single inch. My cornfed redhead of a huzzey-muffet ended argument when she reminded me what she would do to Mr. Potato-Head dolls when she was a little girl. Fortunately, my head is not nearly as detachable—although it wasn’t for her lack of trying to make it so! I, convinced she had won the argument and now highly motivated, forced myself to grow my hair back within mere seconds. What one does for love.

Some people take solace in looking rather solanaceous. I for one do not: Having my usual countenance—a mixture of the square, the goat-like, and the squirrel-like—replaced with the visage of a lumpy potato, is most disconcerting. And after Becasue’s disconcertment reached a state of high piquedness, I nearly found myself left in solanaceous solitude. But as Luck would have it, I was able to disempotato myself rapidly. A bottle of butthairwash had played no small part.

Born in 1970, on its first day, its very first day. Belched forth upon the advent of the Unix epoch before Unix even existed. Pinched out by two eunuchs whom everyone said couldn’t have children. The bastard child of James Joyce and Stanley Unwin came into being.

It was a Thursday.

Four days prior, the man who would birth Linux twenty-one years later was born—some say the Unix epoch was set to honor this, although I remain skeptical. Some credit the 1969 Moon Landing with launching the Unix epoch, but that’s a bit off (sort of like my eyebrows still are). And two weeks later, Biafra would capitulate, ending the Nigerian Civil War—something for which my 14-day-old self has been blamed for fifty years.

No longer would I be merely someone’s bad idea. Now I was a Pnårp, fully formed, made flesh (admittedly, with the countenance of a lumpy potato until my hair finally grew in). And surely, a lot of bad ideas had preceded me. But I would bring bad ideas to a whole new level. Another twenty-nine years would have to pass (and three months and seven noses), but then I would begin blogging.

My town’s brief flirtation with “sustainable” air travel came to an end Wednesday when the airship Lolo Ferrari caught fire, deflated, and crashed into the harbor. Indeed she was a submersible dirigible now—fully immersed, in fact, at the bottom of the bay. A clutch of squirrels living nearby were blamed, even though squirrels don’t know how to start fires (despite my best efforts to teach the Promethean art to them). Our dunderpelt of a mayor’s climate change initiative to replace all the airplanes with hydrogen-filled airships had shown promise—much more so than his earlier initiatives to ban disposable trash bags and toilet paper—but even the most ambitious plans can be undone by a pair of incendiary squirrels.

I sat on a park bench on Horatio Hornblower Street, where it runs along the waterfront, watching a team of workmen fish the Lolo Ferrari out of the drink. I was eating my blunch—a delicious tuna brain sandwich—letting my mind wander as I munched, munched, munched—munched on my blunch. Quite delicious indeed! These hydragyrous fish brains squeezed between two slices of self-slicing bread turned my own brains to thoughts of other fish. To this day, I still do not understand why fish don’t have feet. I have feet. Becasue has feet. Chloë Moretz has feet. So why don’t fish have feet? It is a mystery.

Maybe some fish have feet. But I’ve never seen them. Maybe they tuck them up inside themselves so they can swim as good as they do. Or maybe they’re detachable, and the fish leave them behind on the sea floor when they go out for a swim.

How do fish learn to swim so well? I’m part fish—yet when I jump in a lake, I sink to the bottom until someone rescues my flailing corpse. Furthermore, would fish wear sandals? (On the feet they don’t seem to have?) Would a goose wear a cravat? Fish don’t have feet. But geese have necks. Long necks. Necks long enough to wear a dozen cravats. One atop the other. Just like how my long head is long enough to wear three asshats. One atop the other. And my big blonde huzzey-muffet has enough feet to wear three pairs of sandals atop her head. One atop the other atop the other!

My goonflayvinous reverie was interrupted when a clown sailed by in a makeshift boat made from a washtub. A team of four geese towed the contraption while the clown loomed over them with a horsewhip. No one else seemed to notice. I nonchalantly took note of the ophantulous scene—what else might I do, panic?—likely nothing more than a phantasm brought on by my mercurial blunch. My woolgathering scalegathering continued, as did the expiscation of the Lolo Ferrari. I took another bite of fish brains. I pondered: Can fish type? Could a fish be taught to code? Could a fish even be coaxed onto the Internet… to blog and tweet and…?

Broadening the scope of my seaside ruminations beyond fish feet… do tomatoes have toes? An image recently seen online featured two anthropomorphic tomatoes—solanaceous as ever!—smiling warmly at each other while one declared to the other, “Love you from my head to-mah-toes!” But I cannot believe tomatoes have feet (unlike fish), let alone toes, so I was left perplexedly wall-eyed trying to understand this.

But then somegnome just told me I should stop trying to understand these things. I should take solace in the fact that I haven’t been accused of screwing a pheasant in a long time. (But not too long a time.) I objected, however: Just last Tuesday one of my neighbors had insinuated that I pegged a peacock, which is not far off.

It was also demanded, simultaneously, that I go yerk a turkey. Yet I recently juiced the last of my turkeys, so there were none left to yerk.

I resolved to cease jamming my rubbish into cream cartons and then those cartons into surprising places around town, after I had a terrifying dream wherein I was jammed full of cream cartons until I burst, then I myself was jammed into a cream carton that was not quite six feet tall.

“Nurgle the Beagle” would be a good pet name to complement Lucy Goosey and Moosey. But I didn’t have a beagle and my 5½-foot-tall girl–chipmunk didn’t appreciate being called a beagle just to make this work.

And there was the banana incident. I know how the man felt: I too want to eat all the bananas duct-taped to the walls around me. And not just the ones in the art gallery on Mapplethorpe Street—but all the ones someone taped up in all the other buildings around town, too. I didn’t know what to make of that—why were there so many bananas taped to the walls in my town now? They decked the halls of City Hall, festooned the fire station, and filled all the stacks at the library. All a vivid yellow, adhered with duct tape a contrastingly dull gray. Why so many bananas? Why so much duct tape? Did the mysterious banana-adherer run out of nails? That’s how I fasten my bananas to the wall so they won’t run off when I turn my back on them—but what do I know about bananas?

I guess I’ll just leave banana-adhering to the experts. Next time I’m hungry I’ll go eat the melons someone jammed in the mailboxes on Terwilliger Street instead.

Whetting the appetite, slaking the thirst, and easing the poop. I sighed deflatedly. A most feculent ordeal had come to an end, only to promise so many more in the days, years, and decades to come.