April 22nd, 2006

krazy koati

Scarlet billows start to spread

I got election day wrong. It's actually 6 May, allowing for nine days of campaigning after Nomination Day, should the campaign prove to be anything more than a formality. Expected issues include the National Kidney Foundation scandal, recent flash flooding over on the eastern side of the island, and the argument that there really ought to be an opposition party anyway.

Meanwhile I'm sure most of you, like me, assumed that your risk of being devoured by fish while in Japan was tiny. The risk is still reasonably small, although perhaps not as tiny as I had supposed. According to the news, there's a spa called ``Dr Fish'' in Hakona, a hot spring resort. There, one of the pools has been filled with a species fish from Kangal, Turkey, which eats meat, and more to the point, has no problem with eating human flesh.

Unfortunately for those hoping to be skeletonized by sea creatures, the Kangal fish are small -- about the length of the average guest's big toe, it appears -- so you would have to wait an extremely long time to be wholly devoured, possibly overnight. As it is they reportedly concentrate on dead skin, psoriasis-infected regions, and other such unhygienic parts of the -- let's be honest -- seepage-prone human body. One of the customers said it tickles, but the fish do eat away the bad stuff.

And if there is an afterlife, we know now that tens, possibly hundreds, of thousands of Victorian-era souls are kicking their valets' souls because none of them ever thought of ``climb into a pool and be nibbled by fish'' when they were alive to make it a health/hygiene fad. Meanwhile in some alternate history a sample of the fish were brought back to England or the United States -- it wouldn't even be that much of a stretch -- and turned into a going concern by some John Harvey Kellogg type. All you need to add is poorly regulated jolts of electricity now and then, and you'd have upperclass twits of the year lining up for months.

Trivia: Scott Crossfield was in charge of flying the X-15 during the contractor development and testing phase. Source: Hypersonics Before the Shuttle: A Concise History of the X-15 Research Airplane, Dennis R Jenkins.

Currently Reading: Dark Universe, Danial F Galouye. If the cover is going to bill the book as ``a prophetic view of the human race'' it shouldn't include the nuclear bomb survivors of humanity condemned to lightless caves to the point that light is a vague holy word, the only stimulation optic nerves get is from rubbing your eyelids too hard, and some people have picked up a new sense called ``ziv''. I feel safe in saying that won't come to pass.