Sunday, January 26, 2014

A Study of Stone Land Sharks

April 1, 2013
Look closely at the list of endangered species. Focus on animals. You’ll notice numerous toads, frogs, birds, lizards, and all other sorts of creatures. I did notice that neither the Loch Ness Monster nor Bigfoot (not the yeti or sasquatch, but the real true Bigfoot) are not on the list. So I assume they’re doing well in nature and are not at risk of going extinct. However, there is a particular creature that I know should be on the list and isn’t, the Stone Land Shark, or Terrae caetus, as I’ve decided to classify them. As their discoverer, I have chosen the genus and species to literally define the creature. Of course, the scientific community finds great humor in my assertion that the Stone Land Shark, or SLS, be recognized as anything more than a fanciful creature created by a deluded mind. So what if I don’t have a lot of fancy degrees or a research grant from some upscale society? I know what I saw.

April 15, 2013
I am attempting to raise money to investigate the pod—is that what you call a group of sharks? I’ll have to look it up—of SLSs I first saw three years ago. For now, I will not be disclosing the location of this pod—seriously, is that the right word or not?—that I encountered in 2010. Getting the money for this is not easy, but I already have managed to gather over $12.00.
Most of that was from a $20.00 bill I found in the street, but I was hungry and stopped for a burger. I consider it an investment in my mental health. Most likely, on this endeavor to locate the pod—Okay, I’m looking that up right now. Hang on a minute.

April 17, 2013
Wow, so I completely got distracted by looking up what you call a group of sharks and forgot to close out my last entry into this journal. Sometimes I really hate having a smartphone. By the way, the term “pod” is acceptable, but I prefer the term “shiver”. A shiver of sharks. How cool is that? Anyway, the fund is up to $15.89 now.

April 25, 2013

May 19, 2013

June 4, 2013

June 30, 2013
$2,828.01! I’m not kidding! Some anonymous donor sent me a real check (not a scam, I’m dead serious!) for $2,800.00! I’m going to Nebraska the Undisclosed Location in two weeks to seek out the shiver of SLSs again. Man, that whole shiver thing sounds so cool! I’m going back, baby!

July 15, 2013
Arrived at the Undisclosed Location in search of the SLS shiver. You know, even the people here think I’m crazy, but I’ll show them all. I’m going to find the SLS shiver and bring back proof, and then the creature will be put on the endangered species list like they’re supposed to be. I just want to protect them. That’s all.

July 19, 2013
Wow, it’s really easy to go through money really fast. I need to lay off the steak and switch to burgers.

July 25, 2013
No shiver yet. Cutting back on burgers. One a meal is enough.

August 1, 2013
How the hell am I almost out of money already? Surely I didn’t spend all that much on gas and hamburgers!

August 2, 2013
Still no sign of the shiver. I’m starting to get discouraged. I need a steak.

August 4, 2013
I’m down to the last $50.00 of my research budget. My anonymous donor is not going to be pleased with my lack of results. I may have to fake some results. Crap, I shouldn’t have written that. Why do I write all this in ink?!

August 5, 2013
I wrote a letter today and sent it to the return address for my anonymous donor. I have copied it below:
To my Anonymous Donor,
Success! I have located the SLS shiver! There are only three to my eyes, but the rippling of the ground suggests there are more beneath the surface that refuse to expose themselves to the air. I approached the shiver with caution this morning, selecting the medium-sized of the three exposed fins. The creature did not retreat at my approach, nor did its companions—shiver-mates?—attack. Either they do not see me as a threat, or they are not afraid of humans. Either way, I have located them and am prepared to begin a collection of data regarding them. Send money.

August 8, 2013
To my Anonymous Donor,
In order to better distinguish between the three SLSs in this shiver, I have given them names. As I have yet to determine if they are genderless or not, and I don’t know how to distinguish between male and female SLSs anyway, I have chosen to simply call them A, C, and D, in order from smallest to largest. I didn’t want to name one “B” just because that seems stupid and predictable. Besides, my name starts with B. No matter how cool the SLSs are, I’m not sharing my first initial with one.
Send money.

August 12, 2013
To my Anonymous Donor,
Thank you for the additional $500.00 for the research fund. With this money, I have discovered four ways in which an SLS can consume meat, specifically steak. They are listed below:
1.      Sucking it underneath the ground. At this point, I assume it is eaten through the mouth.
2.      Smashing it to a pulp with their massive back fin until it is absorbed through the skin.
3.      Eating it when I’m not looking. I assume the head surfaced and the steak was eaten through the mouth.
4.      Through a communication system we have developed, offering the steak to me as a peace offering. Unwilling to risk offending them, I promptly accepted the offer, grilled it with salt and pepper, and ate it next to C.
They like steak. Steak is expensive. Send money.

August 13, 2013
To my Anonymous Donor,
C and I seem to have developed a good relationship. I suspect that like many creatures, SLSs are split between male and female. I suspect C is a the female of the shiver and that A and D are males. Without any means to tell for certain, I am hesitant to give them proper names.
Out of steak. Send money.

August 17, 2013
My anonymous donor hasn’t responded to my last few letters, and I assume he or she has lost interest in the research. This is not good. I don’t have any money left to get back home, and I think the shiver is turning on me now that I no longer have the means to bring them several steaks a day. I have begun to fear for my life.

August 19, 2013
Still no response and no funds from my anonymous donor. Sending one final letter in an attempt to continue the research.
To my Anonymous Donor,
Out of steak. Growing depressed and afraid. Scared to sleep at night for fear the SLS shiver will attack and eat me in lieu of steak. Need gas to escape.
Send money.

August 25, 2013
To my Anonymous Donor,
There has been a remarkable transformation in the shiver of SLSs here. Through some miracle, or perhaps a natural part of their life cycle, the Stone Land Sharks have ceased to resemble stone and appear to have actually become stone! I have included a picture so you can better understand the vast size of the creatures. Of course, all you can see are the great back fins of the creatures, as they appear to have made the change while still submerged. I have never actually managed to catch a glimpse of their faces, as they always surface when I’m not looking.
I consider this venture completed at this time and do intend to return at intervals to inspect the progress of the now-stone SLSs. Gas needed to return home to compile report. Please provide.

September 2, 2013
To my Anonymous Donor,
I’m still stuck here. Please send gas money.

September 8, 2013
To my AD,
Still stranded here. Need money!

September 13, 2013
Money, please!

September 15, 2013
Well, my AD hasn’t responded to anything for some time now. I’m out of money, out of food, out of gas, and in the middle of nowhere. I’m done for. Might as well level with myself and write my final confession in this journal. Anyone who has read these notes is probably very curious about what I have to say. Well, here’s my final confession:

I’m a closet vegetarian.
 A note on this story. I'm not really sure what state of mind I was in while writing this. I know for a fact I was NOT drunk. I think I was just slightly insane. If you want proof that I'm messed up in the head... well, just go read the story again.

Special thanks to Katahrina Bordet of the Every Photo Tells podcast for letting me use this picture on the story. The photo is her property and is used with permission. Something tell me she's going to give me a big wtf when she reads what her photo inspired.

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