Archive for the ‘aquatic’ category

Sea Creature Washes Up On Russian Beach!

August 17, 2018

We always get terribly excited here at Foxsylvania when any kind of globster washes up on any beach, anywhere. Set up some food stands and a good band, and you’ve really got something to break up the summer doldrums!



…the “sea monster” in question is described as being smelly and hairy, and at least three times the size of an average human. It washed up on the shore of the Bering Sea on the Pacific side of the Kamchatka Peninsula; from Russia with Love, Darlink! Although the unidentified thing appears to be from an animal with gray and white coloring, it lacks a defined head or other body parts other than a possible tail or tentacle. The creature is covered with tubular hair, which is hollow and similar to that found on a polar bear.

Some have speculated that the carcass could be the remains of a wooly mammoth that had washed up as glaciers thawed, while others suggest that it could be from an octopus or giant squid. The most likely theory, however, is that the carcass is indeed a globster, a term coined in 1962 to describe something that is not a complete animal, but rather the decaying parts of sea animals such as whales or sharks. Under the influence of time, the sea, and post-mortem predation, the remains of large sea animals often take on bizarre and unrecognizable forms.

So if you visit a beach and come upon a globster, resist the temptation to make a sandwich. It wouldn’t be good for you…

Kayak TV Commercial “Shark…”

July 22, 2018

 

Imagine performing dentistry on a Great White Shark…now that’s a toothy business!  This shark is reclining on a dental chair, too, although there’s no need to tell him to open wide…his maw gapes enormously, and is full of razor-sharp teeth.  In the Kayak commercial, you can even see the shark’s tail moving slightly.  The attending dentist doesn’t appear too worried about his unusual client, however, just going about business as usual.  An observing guy in the background comments that the dentist appears confident.  A woman also in the background agrees, but adds that he doesn’t appear Kayak confident as she is, with Kayak having searched hundreds of sites for her to find the best flight.  It’s “search one and done,” you see…

Now being offbeat, I fantasize about crossover commercials.  Picture one featuring the Kayak shark, and the Aspen Dental dentist.  “You really should take better care of your teeth,” the Aspen Dentist might lecture the Kayak shark, who perhaps deliberately in spite ate a whole box of Oreos before visiting the dentist.  “Cancel the rest of my appointments for this afternoon!,” our Aspen guy might add before settling undaunted into the task of cleaning the hundreds of teeth before him. Dentistry soldiers on…our unsung heroes.

Or imagine Progressive Insurance’s agent Flo trying to sell insurance to the shark, who would only listen so long before snapping at Flo in frustration.  Cobra-like, Flo would whip safely away before chiding the shark that he didn’t have to snap her head off.  Flo has impressive survival skills, you see, enduring being marooned on a desert island with only a “name your own price” tool in a commercial that recalls a Tom Hanks film…

Geico’s “Manatees in Novelty Tees”

February 26, 2018

This Geico commercial must rank pretty high on the silliness scale.  As a family visits a aquarium and pauses before the manatee (“sea cow”) exhibit, they are rewarded by a view of a quartet of the creatures, each wearing a different colored tee shirt, complete with slogan.  There are many surprising things in this world, you see…what’s not surprising is how much money the father, Matt, saved when he switched his insurance to Geico.  

“What does ‘come at me bro,’ mean?,” questions the son.  Dad replies that it’s something you say to a friend.  It’s good to know that manatees, sluggish though they may be, have a sense of fashion.  I do hope that their tee-shirts have color-safe dyes…

 


“The Shape of Water” is Extraordinary!

December 7, 2017

It’s being called everything from a sympathetic re-telling of “The Creature from the Black Lagoon” to an origins story for the Abe Sapien character from Hellboy, but by most accounts The Shape of Water is one of the best films that Guillermo del Toro has produced.  

Set circa 1962 during the depths of the Cold War, the fantasy drama concerns the unlikely relationship between a mute female custodian, Elisa,  and an intelligent amphibious humanoid creature torn from South America and kept in a secret government laboratory in Baltimore.  It’s readily believable for any dabbler in government conspiracy theories.  Called “the Asset” by his captors, the being faces exploitation and eventual “harvesting” in order that his biology might be further studied and applied to the space program.  As their relationship deepens, the humble cleaning lady resolves to take action to save a unique individual from captivity and worse…and “the Asset” has additional capabilities of his own…

The film works on many levels, and is rightfully up for numerous awards.  Seeing it might be the best Xmas present that you could give yourself!

“Monsters of the Deep” on Monsters and Mysteries Unsolved

August 30, 2016

 

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The S1/Ep06 episode of Monsters and Mysteries Unsolved focused on unidentified and unconfirmed aquatic cryptids reported in Loch Ness, Scotland; Lake Champlain, Vermont; and Vancouver Island, Canada.  Reports of creatures in all three locations were largely based on eyewitness observations, occasionally accompanied by a blurry photograph taken at some distance.  

Sightings of the celebrated Loch Ness Monster date back to the 6th century, and the series touched upon two recent observations reported in 2003 and 2010.  Both were of course inconclusive, with one recent image discounted by experts as likely light reflections on the water.  The notion that the Loch Ness creature was a plesiosaur was also briefly considered, but dismissed by experts as being very unlikely.

Acoustics were used by a vessel profiled in the Lake Champlain segments that hoped to capture echolocation sounds.  While a couple of rapping sounds were heard, they were not thought to be bioacoustic in origin.  Likewise no confirming evidence was found of the creature reported to frequent the waters off Vancouver Island, Canada. 

As it was pointed out, any reported site of a water monster would not be comprised of a single individual, but rather have to have a breeding population of perhaps fifty or more specimens for a population to be viable and capable of continuing its existence.  Investigations will continue at all three sites profiled, likely for the foreseeable future…

Not Bad for a Beach Ape!

July 21, 2015

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Dang, these Aussie guys are tough!  When a cheeky bull shark tried to blindside Australian surfing champ Mick Fanning during a live televised competition, the blighter got a bit more than he bargained for.  Spectators thought that they were about to see someone eaten alive before their eyes, but despite being caught off guard and lacking the formidable choppers of his impromptu opponent, Mick slugged the shark in the back and retreated with all of his body parts intact!

I think we’ve found a worthy successor to  Paul Hogan as Crocodile Dundee!  (Film producers, take note!)  Pretty soon sharks will be watching Human Week on the tube to see if we’re as tough as they’ve heard…

Chupacabra and the Kraken on “True Supernatural”

April 24, 2015

 

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Both the Chupacabra and the Kraken have been considered at other times on several similar shows, but like old friends (I have strange associates) it was good to visit them again on S1/Ep2 of True Supernatural (2014).

Information on the Chupacabra focused on appearances in and around Cuero, Texas. Specimens acquired in this region have leathery, hairless skin, strange paws on which the middle digits are somewhat attached, blue eyes, and apparently strange nodules on the rear end. The creature moves unusually, and may have only two nipples on a side. Unlike Mountain Monsters, the True Supernatural show tends to interview actual scientists, university researchers, and also more credible eyewitnesses.

Three reputed Chupacabra corpses were at hand, one of which was from Dr. Phyllis Canion, who lost 28 chickens on her ranch to the mysterious predator. From the three specimens, samples were sent to an animal genetics lab at the Texas A & M University, where analyses were run on bone, skin, and teeth that yielded conflicted results. One specimen was identifiably canine, the other a coyote-dog hybrid, and Dr. Canion’s was a coyote/Mexican wolf hybrid. Normally these two species don’t breed, and the Mexican wolf hasn’t been seen in the area for 80 years. Speculation ranges from the conspiracy crazy…that Chupacabra was a living weapon created by the government…to the more reasonable, that Chupacabra represented a form of spontaneous evolution…

Now in Berlin, Nevada a site has the fossilized remains of nine Ichthyosaurs, apex predators that were rather like the killer whales of their Triassic day. What is curious is that these remains all show broken necks and ribs, with their skeletons twisted and seemingly arranged. The inference was given that these bad boys were themselves bested by something even badder, namely the legendary Kraken! Cephalopods are known to construct fort-like structures and to be far more intelligent than we usually give them credit for being. The scenario was presented that when oceans covered the area, a Kraken lured these mighty Ichthyosaurs into its lair, killed them, played with their remains, and then arranged the vertebral columns in a fashion which may have mimicked the array of suckers on its tentacles. Wild stuff…and as invertebrates tend not to leave much of a fossil record, we do not of course have proof of a Kraken other than sailor accounts from an earlier century.

As the great Fox Mulder would agree, the truth is out there. Cue the X-Files theme music, please…and release the Kraken!