Saturday, August 27, 2011
Lice are all about real estate. They no sooner set up a development than new territory opens up and in they go, looking for loopholes in the zoning regulations. There are over six thousand different kinds of lice, each in its own cul-de-sac.
Lice adapt freely to new niches as they become available because they are so good at making new lice. If any of the new lice come up with any good ideas, it's a short piece of work to run it through a few generations and give it a whirl. We, on the other hand, are much more doddering about the whole venture. Our one good idea was our big chewy brain, and we lugged it around and thought it so valuable that we now give birth to premature grubs that we have to take care of for years and years, just so we can get their big heads out into the world. We scrabbled about on a mere sliver of the planet for thousands of years, skulking on the wafer of real estate not under ice and doing our utmost to outwit the predators before they dined on our soft, delicious brains, and then--for whatever reason--the glaciers melted away and things toasted up and we looked around and our own real estate gene kicked into high gear. We quickly infested much of the planet; we bloomed like spring crocuses, swarmed like army ants, spread like spilled paint.
We haven't been here very long, geologically speaking. Even less long, if your religious tradition requires you to subscribe to the best science available to goatherds three thousand years ago. Either way, we're a dot on the timeline.
We like to think we're on top. That's just how head lice are, but just between you and me, it's getting kind of pubic around here.
If you've slogged down this far, good news! You already have one of the answers in the Pacific Northwest Bloggers Scavenger Hunt, hosted by my pal Pat Lichen. At 9am (that's Pacific time, naturally), she will be posting links to several blogs. Scavenge answers from these blogs for a chance for a prize (it's good) and maybe an introduction to some great bloggers you haven't met before. Click here to get started.