Sunday, March 12, 2006


We'll get to the movie review in a second. First, here is an info sheet for you to print and distribute.

Today’s topic: How To Keep Your Hermit Crabs Alive Some More


>> Crabs are scavengers who eat any gross dead thing that washes up on a beach, as long as it is still fresh. Keep this in mind when you shop. They love fish, fresh or dried coconut, driftwood and cork bark, the crab pellets sold in the stores, all kinds of fruit, mild-flavored greens and vegetables, crackers, fish-food flakes, and the pellets intended for ducks, ferrets, rats, carp, guinea pigs, monkeys and rabbits.

>> For the reason stated above, you cannot give crabs the same food day after day. They will stop eating it completely. They will also not be able to face the same food again, even their favorite, if you let it go rotten in the tank and then try to replace it with fresh.

>> NEVER FEED BREAD TO YOUR CRABS, or anything else baked with yeast. It kills them rather slowly and horribly. Unyeasted breads like crackers, matzoh, hardtack, and cornbread are fine.

>> Crabs love kelp, and you can buy it in tablet form at the health-food store. Take some yourself, Fish Girl, it’s good for you.

>> Crabs ALWAYS need a mineral chewy available. They love cuttle bones and the calcium blocks intended for turtle tanks. These are pinchably delicious to a crab. They also badly need the calcium.

>> Alternate meat, fruit, grains and vegetables when you serve dinner to your crabs. Four-course meals rarely wash up on a beach, and you want to approximate the beach lifestyle as closely as possible. Their natural tendency is to find a big chunk of something, eat it until they can’t stand the sight of it, then move on to a big chunk of something else.

>> Reptile vitamins are good for crabs. Sprinkle some on their dampened food every so often, but not every day. The stuff is powerful and not all of them like the taste. Once a month is plenty.

>> Crabs refusing to eat are miserable indeed. Check to make sure the tank is clean, warm, humid, and properly lit. Make sure the food is fresh and not the same thing they’ve had daily for a week. Make sure the tank smells fresh and that there are no dead crabs in there. Bad smells kill a crab’s appetite, the same way they kill yours.


I put off reviewing this movie for a long time because of the horrible reviews it’s gotten over the years. Imagine my surprise when I finally saw it and realized it is actually A HILARIOUS SPOOF ON THE CURRENT HUMAN-FISH POLITICAL SITUATION, full of inversions and sly jabs at the "ruling class" (supposedly humans, at least if you ask THEM) that Oscar Wilde would have been proud of.

PLOT SUMMARY: Humans trying to find a cure for their own degenerative brain diseases decide to Tamper In Dagon’s Domain by creating a group of mutant sharks. In the usual course of things, the sharks turn on their tormentors in a wonderfully diabolical way, sabotaging the underwater facility that is the setting for the story and systematically flooding it, section by section, so they can swim right in and put the munch on the researchers. Through a combination of luck and pluck, and in spite of my rooting consistently for the sharks, a handful of humans survive.

A character sums up the story nicely in the midst of the crisis: "Now, you see how that works? She’s scroon with the sharks, and now the sharks are scroon with us!" Well, yeah, what did you expect? Did you expect us to give you money? The unfolding of this plot encompasses some fine moments shamelessly stolen from Jaws, The Poseidon Adventure, and, oddly enough, Vertical Limit. The result makes for a two swell hours of entertainment, with alternating moments of super-high tension, great knock-you-out-of-the-water surprises, and of course lots of the explosions, wisecracking commentary, and terrified females in foundation garments that are so beloved of the hairy bipeds.

I’m telling you – if this were a true story the humans would be OURS by now. The Notes below should help illustrate the way the Monkey People could one day, in a perfect world, PLAY RIGHT INTO OUR FINS:

To hand the land back to the fish in just a few easy steps, Dear Humans...

START HERE: take some Mako sharks, known for their high-speed swimming and willingness to eat Naked Apes. Enhance their brain size dramatically, particularly focusing on the forebrain which governs reasoning and will. While you’re at it, feed them Miracle-Gro pellets so they get as big as school buses. Do all this in an invasive, humiliating way that leaves them COMPLETELY PISSED OFF AT THE ENTIRE HUMAN RACE.

NEXT: Ignore any evidence you see that the Sharks are starting to plan, anticipate their captors’ next moves, and hunt cooperatively.

TAKE CARE to let the enhanced sharks watch through a handy observation window as you insert immense, harpoonlike needles into the heads of test sharks, so they understand perfectly that they are going to be next if they don’t make a move, and quickly.

DON’T FORGET TO include in your researches a plan to remove the enhanced brain cells from the sharks and insert them into the noggins of human medical test subjects, THUS MAKING THEM PART SHARK. The only sad part of the movie for me was the fact that you never got to see this happen. The fun we could have had!

PROCEED THUSLY: When the sharks start doing things like swimming backwards, playing pranks with helicopters, pounding through steel doors to get at you, and feigning death so they can snap pieces off you during medical tests, tell yourself that EVERYTHING IS UNDER CONTROL.

NEXT: When the mutant sharks start sabotaging your test facility, DON’T KILL THEM. Instead, stand around arguing about the ethics of gene therapy.

PROCEED AS FOLLOWS: Wait until the damage is done without intervening. Do not make any attempt to check around the damaged facility to search for survivors. Let other members of your species fend for themselves.

TIP: If you are accosted by a mutant shark on the open sea in a small boat, your best move is to jump into the water and flail around like mad. At this point, you can trust that the preternaturally hunky hero guy, a shark wrangler with a chequered past, will arrive out of nowhere and dispatch the menace. With a crossbow. Isn’t that how it’s usually done?

TIP: If you are accosted by a mutant shark in a sunken research lab, make sure you are standing in chest-deep water when you reach for the submerged, but still functioning, electrical gadget that you will then use to dispatch the menace. If you are female, remove your wetsuit before proceeding.

TIP: If you have an axe with you, use it to chop through the bulkhead, escape the room, and allow the shark to chase you longer, rather than ending the suspense by burying the business end in the shark’s skull.

HELPFUL HINT: When you are trapped in a teeth-chatteringly-cold, shark-infested, watery hell and all you have left are wisecracks, wield them ruthlessly and without scruple. The sharks will be SOOOOOOO impressed.

SUGGESTION: At the height of the danger, stomp around the edge of the pool in the lab where the sharks have been going through hell for months. Deliver, AT THE TOP OF YOUR LUNGS, an impromptu speech on the importance good morale in the face of desperate situations. Be sure to give the sharks their rebuttal time.

I laughed so hard at this movie! I can’t recommend it too highly.

And get a load of the closing theme song for this remarkable movie! This is delivered from the apparent POV of a happy "half man, half shark" operative, recruiting new contacts in the briny. Rapped by LL Cool J. I cannot reveal on the Internet whether or not he is One Of Us, but see the movie, read the text of this rap and draw your own conclusions.

"Deepest, Bluest" (Shark's Fin)

Deepest, bluest – my hat is like a shark’s fin
Manmade terror
Hungry jaws of death
Y'all don't cross my depths
I'll pause your breaths
I cause you to sink down forty thousand leagues
Bleeding to death with no arms and short sleeves
My world's deep blue
Killers gotta eat too
Looking for human flesh to rip my teeth through
Other fish in the sea but
Barracudas ain't equal
To a half human predator created by a needle
Jet black eyes baby they stare while you sleep
When your Titanic sinks I'm the one you gon' meet
Hearing terrified screams they surround my team
All you see is trails of blood
Even God won't intervene
Nightmares of darkness
My appetite is heartless
Even if we related, you eliminated regardless
In the deep blue, underwater walls
Half man, half shark
My jaws don't fall
Our Father who art in Heaven
Hallowed be Thy name
Killers sworn to beast
Swallowed them in flames
They switched my DNA
Trip me into Cool J
I can't fight the feeling
I'm born to kill prey
To survive an attack
There's only one way
Battle to the death
That's how sharks play
Weapons left behind
We dueling with the mind
You blind, crippled, or crazy
You're real easy to find
Struggling to flow with hemorrhages in your throat
Getting the lap dance while I smash through your boat
Eat your whole fam
Nothing left but a right hand
Clinging to a rail
Escape, attempts fail
You'll never make it home
Tear the flesh off your bone
Walking in undercurrents is a dangerous zone
I'm talking death out a moment's notice
You wasn't focused
Me and my crew strike
Like some underwater locusts

Uh, uh take it deeper
Uh, uh take it deeper
Uh, uh take it deeper
Uh, uh take it deeper

These waters are waist level
The hallway's flooded
Lost your scuba gear
The killer's cold - blooded
His name's LL
You don't really want it
I ate your ancestors
The ocean is haunted
I'm closing in cause I'm supposed to win
How the cold steel feel when it froze your chin
Should of stayed on dry land
Stroke while you can
Cause now you under pressure in the land of the damned
Abandoned pirate ships
Eels and sod scum
Fish that glow in the dark
The Titanic's hub
Underwater storms
Your blood is so warm
You're life vest is off
And that turns me onKiller for centuries
The Gotti of the deep
In the next millennium
I'm still gonna creep
Sand under my belly, ocean over my head
Through the light in the shadows
You become the living dead

Copyright 1999, LL Cool J

Can I just add a thought here? Human imagery ALWAYS connects Sharks with being dead. Load of crap if you ask me. Once your transformation to Piscatorial Consciousness reaches a certain level, you’ll know that Sharks are all about CLEARING THINGS UP. Which is the reason Naked Apes have made every effort to exterminate every species. The sad thing is that they truly can’t tell the difference between CLEARING THINGS UP and BEING ANNIHILATED. LL Cool J appears to see the shade of difference here, in these last couple of lines – "you become the LIVING dead." Nobody dies under the ocean – they only get EATEN and enter a different level of consciousness.

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