The worst monsters come out this time of year.
The weather is in turmoil. Freezing to melting in the course of a day. The rain has left swamps and mud everywhere.
A trip outside requires layering. In case it snows. In case of tsunami. A bottle of water for the dog (water, water everywhere, but not a drop to drink).
What madness is this? A person spends as much time in preparation and post-adventure mud cleaning as he does actually enjoying the outdoors? How can one dog be covered in so much fur and muck? Why is there mud in my ear? Who decided 5 am was a proper time to get out of bed anyhow?
Creepy weirdness crawled into your perpetually damp running shoes overnight to wait for you. You have become collateral damage in the squirrels’ endless sky and turf wars. Feral cats stalk you around every corner; coolly assessing your weaknesses. Clouds of bugs spring forth from the mire as you run. Mosquitoes the size of owls are so laden with your blood, they can barely fly.
Those greedy slobs don’t seem interested in moving on from the buffet either way.
Skeeters are the real monsters. Hounding you. Sucking out your life force. Befouling the standing water. Buzzing in your ear the minute you drift off to sleep. STOP HITTING YOURSELF!
You’ll forgive me then if I chuckle at the great early summer monsters that have sprung up.
Was it an unknown marine monster that raised its head above the surface of the River Mersey in England on May 25? And what was the mysterious 7-foot-long creature that washed ashore near New York’s famous Brooklyn Bridge on May 21?
The New York “monster” is an Atlantic sturgeon, no doubt. Scary because it was probably older than your mom and looked like a gatorshark dressed up for the Faire. Concerning because, well, the Atlantic sturgeon is a Species of Concern.
The Mersey beast looks like a porpoise or whale to me, just as was suggested by some folks who might know.
One expert, Paul Renolds of the Blue Planet Aquarium, studied the photos and suggested the “monster” was merely a basking shark or a small species of whale or dolphin, because there are numerous species of these creatures around the United Kingdom.
“Harbor porpoises are notoriously difficult to spot,” she said. “They surface fleetingly, and have such a small dorsal fin that it is often confused with ripples or waves in the water.”
Doesn’t look exactly the same as a dolphin in the Indian River, but it isn’t so far off that seeing this would initiate any “strange being” alert in my cranium. Those creatures are amazing and will sneak right up on you and disappear before you even know what happened. Then again, they might arrive in a shower of water and cavort alongside you for twenty minutes. You just never know.
- First ever hybrid porpoise recovered in San Juan County (pnwlocalnews.com)
- Californian dolphin gang caught killing porpoises (newscientist.com)
- ‘East River Monster’ Is No Mutant (livescience.com)