Monday, August 28, 2006

Crustacea stupidosa

Crabs are fascinating creatures. And get rid of them funny thoughts in your know I'm not talking about those crabs that make your sensitive places itch.

According to Wikipedia, crabs are decapod crustaceans, and that only those belonging to the taxa Brachyura are the true crabs. Instead of skin or scales, crabs have an exoskeleton, which I find to be totally cool. I'm still hoping for the day when animators/cartoonists come up with a sexy-looking crab-inspired superhero.

But crabs can behave strangely sometimes. You can see this for yourself. Go to your local market, buy a dozen live crabs or so, and place them in a bucket or tall basket. Inevitably, one of them will try to make a getaway by climbing up the container. It's like he's thinking, "I don't want to stay down here in this dark, crowded place, with all these other crabs. If I try a little harder, push myself just a little bit more, I can do this. I see the light up there! Just a few more inches and I'm FREE!"

But the crabs below him have other things in mind. Instead of being happy for their fellow crab, instead of trying to help him reach a better place, their crab mentality kicks in. "Look! He's trying to get away!" they whisper amongst themselves. "Who the fuck does he think he is to deserve any better? Is he more crab than any of us? Doesn't he have ten legs just like the rest of us? If we can't leave this hellhole, then by golly, nobody else should get to, either! Grab those legs of his! Pull him back doooown!"

God, I just hate it when animals act like humans.


ian said...

Wow. Great insight. But are the crabs acting like people, or are we just acting all crabby?

I recall reading a short story once where "crabs" got their just desserts though. It was called "Crabs Take Over The Island" and was about an experiment of evolution involving small robotic crabs. Great story; impossible to find.


Lizza said...

Thanks, Ian. I'll let you decide whether crabs are like us sometimes or whether we're like crabs. ;-)

I haven't read the short story you mentioned. But it sounds like it was inspired by the crabs that take over Christmas Island once in a while.

Good luck on your novel!

terra shield said...

Perhaps they didn't want to lose their buddy... "whatever we're gonna face, we will face it together buddy!" says the group to the runaway. [just realised that is also a human trait]

It's good in a way, as we can enjoy delicious crab curry (or whatever else way it's cooked) without missing a crab :D

Lizza said...

Ohhh, I do appreciate optimists like you, terra!

And yes, crabs are yummy. I like it when it's cooked in coconut milk.

BeckoningChasm said...

Well, if you want to read about crabs getting what they want, check out Guy N, Smith's novels on crab takeovers. Fairly gruesome stuff.

Real crabs, on he other hand, are very cool creatures. Despite the fact that they nipped me reguarly, as I was trying to study them, they retain their status just below cephalopods as Need More Respect from Mammalian Bipeds.

Blog It's like putting the recycling by the curb...

Prometheus said...

Crab-inspired superhero? Well, Lobsterman was cool till he got Thermidored by the arch-fiend Dr. Sushi.

Prometheus loved crab curry till he discovered their striking resemblence to Phyllum Arachnidae.

Erm.. please don't google or wiki that, you never will look at crabs with drooling eyes ever.

Prometheus said...

Oopsie! Prometheus did a boo boo. Ergo, he publishes the Errata.

Phyllum Arthropoda, Class Arachnidae.

Lizza said...

beckoningchasm, some mammalian bipeds are good blokes. Others give crabs and other non-humans a bad name. :-)

Prometheus, I will NOT even think of googling that. I enjoy my crab too much to ruin my appetite with images of something that I suspect is closely related to that bitch Shelob.

Prometheus said...

Liz Lizzie Lizziest,
You never fail to impress me. "Related to Shelob". Prometheus has met his match. Now if the match won't be rained off, we might have a good score. Triple entendre?

Thou hast this knight charmed. He pledges eternal devotion. My light saber is yours.

Haiku by Prometheus San

Mike said...

lol sometimes my sensitive place feels funny when I think about sensitive things...

I don't like the taste of crab - the first time I ever ate it was at a buffet and I thought it was shredded cheese so I covered my salad with it, didn't find out what it was until I started eating, and haven't cared for it since...

Loved your final sentence - it's the deepest thought I've grasped all day! :-) Oh, speaking of 'manimal' behavior, I saw a show on TV that said apes sometimes will mutilate the bodies of their enemies/victims after they kill them - they bite or rip off their hands, heads and feet!?! Maybe we are related lol

Lizza said...

Prometheus, thou art matchless. Accept my thanks for thine light saber offer! May it shine bright and eviscerate, disembowel, decapitate, emasculate the enemy in the hour of need.

Mike, yeah, crab isn't for everyone. I love it, however. hehe

Interesting factoid about apes you have there. Far from the gentle image we usually get about 'em. :-) And what an interesting thing to think about doing to some people too! Score one more point for Darwin.

Last Minute Lyn said...

I love crabs. My family used to crab for a living on the Chesapeake Bay.
I used to chase my little brother around the homestead with a crab held by the paddle fin. It couldn't pinch me but made a lovely weapon.
I'd like to get a crab tattoo when I have the money for it.
The correct way to eat a crab is strait from the shell. Dip it in apple cider vinegar, then old bay. Get your hands dirty, it adds to the taste. Also required is a good beer. Eat them like this until your lips tingle and you can no longer feel your toungue. Thats the way to eat crabs.

Michael C said...

I tend to forget that crabs are alive (or we're alive by the time I get to them). They and lobster are some of my favorite food.

Natalie said...

America's Next Top Model season (I think 4) had a zodiac challenge and the model posing as a crab was pretty freaking hot. I think an adaptation of that would make a great superhero.

Lizza said...

Lyn, that sounds heavenly. Crab straight from the shell, and with beer. I'm hungry already.

Michael, lobster is nice, but I prefer crab. I do hope there's crab wherever I'm going in the afterlife.

Natalie, I've never seen that show (which isn't surprising since I haven't been watching TV at all recently). Zodiac challenge eh? I hope the model posing as a fish did Pisceans like me proud.

thethinker said...

I wonder which is worse.. animals acting like humans or humans acting like animals?

Lizza said...


Depends on the situation, methinks. lol

Corky said...

Hi Lizza,

For as long as we're never truly crabby to each other (hehehe) most people would get along fine.

My martial arts instructor used to work as a Homicide Policeman in Florida, in an area they call "the Ghetto". Its difficult to forget his description of the criminals he encountered in the area, saying "They're just animals. Its amazing how no other description suits them better."