Monday, May 5, 2014

The Hagfish, Part 2

Ah, the hagfish.

Mysterious phallic horror of the deep.
Hagfish have remained basically unchanged for 300 million years, which proves they simply don't know how to let go of a look that isn't working.

A similar phenomenon can be observed
in some parts of North Dallas.
These fascinating creatures, while outwardly disgusting, are actually disgusting all the way through. There is very little about the hagfish that doesn't make you go hmmmm, or more to the point, WTF. In fact, there is much we don't know about the hagfish, and nearly everything we do know sounds made up.

Most of them are Sagittarians, for example.
Seriously, I could list 10 facts about hagfish, some real and some bullshit, and I'll bet you couldn't tell which is which.

Hey, I think I just stumbled upon a premise.

Answers are below - no peeking. Ready? Go.

Ten Facts (Some of Which Are Utter Lies) About the Humble Hagfish

1. Hagfish have one eye that can't see and one nostril that can't breathe.

2. Hagfish secrete a fibrous slime that scientists believe can be made into a fabric resembling nylon.

3. Speaking of slime, the hagfish is able to avoid being suffocated by its own secretions by tying itself in a knot and scraping them off its body.

4. Hagfish will attempt to mate with any creature that resembles it, including lampreys (to which the hagfish is related), eels (to which it is not), and human penises.

5. Hagfish sex organs lack transportation, which is a fancy way of saying they don't have a penis or a vagina. Instead, they release their gametes through their digestive system, i.e., they come through their ass.

6. Hagfish skin makes a durable leather and is used to make wallets and purses. Spoiler alert: If you've ever owned anything made of eelskin, it's actually hagfish hide.

7. The hagfish is the only known animal that has a skull but no spine.

Also, he's got a dance that ain't got no steps.
(Drawing by Melinae_Ratel)

8. Hagfish can go months without eating, but when the opportunity presents itself, they will binge like sorority girls after rush week.

9. In some parts of Korea, hagfish slime is used like egg whites in cooking. The slime is "harvested" by irritating the hagfish until it starts sliming.

10. Hagfish have four hearts. For this reason, they nearly always take trump when playing bridge.

Number 4 is the only one I made up. For real. Well, the part of number 10 about playing bridge, too. I really don't know anything about their card-playing prowess.

Once again, thanks to Bill the Butcher for encouraging me to explore the revolting world of the hagfish. I think I'll stick to fluffy squirrels other creatures that don't come through their ass. Jeez.


  1. Damn. I was certain #3 was the only one that was made up. Hagfish are so freaky that I figured #4 had to be true. And it may turn out to be true. I'm sure there's much scientists don't know about hagfish, because even scientists are disgusted by them.

    Unless they're Korean scientists.

  2. 11. They can breathe and eat through their skin.

    Not made up.

    Your next assignment: the naked mole rat.


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