Everytime I pop open google’s news aggregator I see a headline along the lines of “Spacewoman Stuck in Orbit with Too Much Shrimp.”* Being allergic to shrimp, I find that a frightening prospect. Somehow this reminded me of the Bonnie and Clyde of the shrimp world, the pair of mantis shrimp that terrorized the Monterey Aquarium* last year, leading to the memorable statement:

“When you’re working near the exhibit you can hear the pop when he’s going after the barnacles,” said senior aquarist David Cripe.

I started searching for info on mantis shrimp (I’m a wee bit burned out today and lack the motivation to actually go get lunch, can you tell?). I found quite a page devoted to the vicious little beasties, which had a very nice introduction to the subject:

Stomatopods (mantis shrimps) are predatory crustaceans that live in the shallow waters of tropical and subtropical seas. They use specialized raptorial appendages to capture and subdue prey by either “spearing” the animals or “smashing” them with heavily calcified clubs. The force of the strike of a large Californian species approaches that of a 22 caliber bullet, and is capable of breaking double layered safety glass. They are, weight for weight, probably the most formidable animals alive.

I told you those things were dangerous. There’s a restaurant called Killer Shrimp in California. A few years ago a friend brought me a salt packet with their logo on it, but sadly it got ruined in The Office Flood.

While searching for shrimp articles, I came upon Good Bye! The Journal of Contemporary Obituaries. (I happened upon this because they have a column of animal obituaries and the shrimp were mentioned last year). Very odd.

Then I lost interest in shrimp and obituaries and started reading about the 100,000-Year-Old Camel Remains that were found in Long Beach, California. I had no idea camels originated in North America.*

*dead Reuters links removed June 2010
*dead National Geographic and National Zoo links removed June 2010