How to Make Friends with the Universe: Advice for Earth’s Apes December 2016

galacticgentlemensmagazineArtwork: “Galactic Gentlemen’s Companion Magazine” by The Estrella Moon Workshop ©

As the universe is so unimaginably enormous, it can sometimes feel as though you are not getting the attention that you feel you deserve. So, in the meantime, Let’s investigate how earthlings can bridge that gap, and make friends with the universe.

Congratulations to December’s winners who each receive two free tickets to this year’s Intergalactic Variety Performance at the Adelphi Theatre on Proxima Centuri b. Please collect your tickets in person at the venue’s box office up to 45 solar minutes before the start of the show. The winning entries are;

  • ‘Alone? Want to meet new and interesting people? Searching for that special someone? Then simply build a spaceship and visit hundreds of other solar systems just like yours, today!’ – by the Astronomical Dating Agency as provided by Lynda Di Dopro
  • ‘Reuse hyperboloid cooling towers to make attractive plant pots. Not only will it make your countryside more appealing, but it will also help save your planet’s atmosphere too!’ – from the Galactic Housekeeper’s Magazine as provided by Miss Jolly Holistics
  • ‘To prevent hangovers, avoid drinking drinks that have alcohol in them.’ – by Doctor Philtrum of the Federal Republic of Macronesia as provided by Donald Pidory
  • ‘Recycle unused warheads to make attractive bird feeders.’ – from the Galactic Housekeeper’s Magazine as provided by Miss Jolly Holistics
  • ‘To ensure the survival of your species, avoid electing idiots as your leaders.’ – Adam Atom of The Quantum States as provided by John-Paul Matin
  • ‘Bring new life into old battleships by using them as attractive planters.’ – from the Galactic Housekeeper’s Magazine as provided by Miss Jolly Holistics

 

Do you have any top tips for humanity?

If you have a tip for the Earth Apes, simply email it to me along with your cosmic name & part of the universe from which you reside, and I’ll naturally select the best ones to post at the next round of How to Make Friends with the Universe: Advice for Earth Apes.

Send your cosmic top tips for humanity to polydandroid@hotmail.com in the body of the email.

Submission Guidelines;

  • Try to limit your top tips to one line.
  • Include your cosmic nom-de-plume and part of the Universe in which you reside – along with the name of who should be attributed to providing it.
  • Keep it simple, so that the Earth apes can read it.

 

Next deadline: 4th February 2017

Art submissions

Do you have an illustration, painting, photograph or electronic masterpiece that you would like to showcase?

Then why not send it along to polydandroid@hotmail.com for consideration? Jpeg format desirable.

Include your name and any link to your personal website/blog.

A small remuneration will be deposited into your Interstellar account, which will be awaiting you when you finally learn how to leave your little planet and join the rest of the cosmic community.

 

Until next time, keep evolving!

 

*Polydandroid reserves the right to use your contribution in any future publication of this blog. Submission is taken as full acceptance. Copyright remains with the author/artist.

Who’s Next in the Evolutionary Line?

jb11Artwork: “Jelly Babies” by John-Paul Matin © 

“I’m with Earthling.”  – Popular slogan for galactic novelty T-shirts

Let me introduce you to Adam. Adam is a male Earth ape, 5ft 11’’ and has red curly hair. He has a roman nose, puffy eyes, a hunched shoulder and leans slightly to the left. His vocabulary is astonishingly limited and he has myopia.

Recently he stayed in a caravan in mid-Wales with his friends, Gaz, Baz and Naz (Although Naz spent most of the time at the local amusement arcades, and so he hardly saw much of him for the whole time they were there.) Adam would definitely recommend travelling to Wales as, in his opinion; “it is very important to experience different cultures.”

Adam likes playing video games. (Which may explain the puffy eyes and hunched shoulder, but at least the opposable thumbs are not going to waste!) He has recently achieved a personal best score on something to do with killing alien invaders. He really likes a girl named Chantelle, but as of yet, Chantelle has not reciprocated his advances (Presumably, because she does not share a mutual interest in video games about killing invading aliens.)

Adam also likes football. His favourite team has not been very successful this year due to the fact that their manager does not possess the same strategic skills as Adam does. Incidentally, Adam could well have made it as a professional footballer, was it not for his bad knee – which may explain why he leans slightly to the left.

Furthermore, Adam likes to watch box-sets and spent his entire weekend doing nothing but watching TV. He doesn’t understand how anyone would want to waste their time reading a ‘boring’ book when they can just download a complete series – ‘Innit?’

So how did I come to know so much about Adam?

Well, today is my sister-in-law’s birthday and as such I thought it would be nice to send her a packet of Jelly Babies, as the like are unheard of in the Alkaidian star system. I found the aforementioned Jelly Babies, opened my purse and found the suitable coins for payment as I patiently queued. A very simple task.

First in line was a female ape who possessed a set of extraordinary eyebrows that were obvious replacements for her natural ones. The connection between the eyebrows and the time to be served appeared to have no correlation at first, but after a few minutes, it became clear that this form of human was unable to grasp the simple premise that one takes items to the counter before joining the queue. Obviously, this was not as she had surmised – which apparently was to wait until one gets to the front before becoming startled by the cashier’s rude and impatient request for any indication of what she may actually want. Hence, the eyebrows.

After several more minutes and now quizzing the cashier on the range of merchandise available, she becomes visibly agitated at having to settle for something she doesn’t know if she really wants at all. Distraught by the experience, she finally leaves the store and the queue takes one step forward.

Well, almost all the queue. All accept the next in line. This ape has forgotten where he is and after a few failed attempts by the cashier to alert him to the fact that he is waiting in a queue, another queue member and the cashier exchange a friendly telepathic agreement to commence without him. Somehow, this telepathic incivility awakens the ignorant ape who is in a state of disbelief that someone should be as so rude to attempt to push in, when he was clearly first!

The third to be served makes none of the previous mistakes. On approaching the counter she has already selected her items and kept alert as when to be served. However, she has made one slight error. During the queueing she has forgotten to get her money ready. Now an attempt to find the correct change has baffled her into a nightmarish 320 second challenge.

Next in line is an elderly ape. This ape has totally misinterpreted the cashier’s friendly customer service manner as keen interest into her daughter’s affairs, grandchildren (all seven of them), faulty boiler and friend, Mavis, who has been waiting over three weeks now for an operation. She has also mistaken the cashier’s congeniality for an invitation to demonstrate her vast general knowledge of the town’s former geography.

I was quite startled to witness one balding ape, who on entering the store, seemed aggrieved that I was in a queue. Whilst he huffed and puffed into his mobile phone and then attempted to demonstrate to the queue that he had a wristwatch and therefore time was very important to him, I decided to assure him that my intentions were purely as a consumer and I showed him my Jelly Babies.

Next, tanned ape with wrong currency.

Next, seventeen unchecked lottery tickets. Loser.

Next, an ape in the wrong queue.

Next, Daz.

Daz is friends with the cashier – Oh, who incidentally, is named Adam. Yes, the very same Adam as previously mentioned at the beginning of this post. It had been a while since they had last seen each other.

By the time I had been served, the Jelly Babies had become squished and congealed together. Next year my sister-in-law will get vouchers.

 

Until next time, keep evolving!

The Ape Never Falls Far from the Tree

titianArtwork: “The Fall of Man” by Titian, circa 1550, Public Domain

“He was what he ate.”  – Ms Petronella Dish

Across the great vast vacuum of the Universe, within innumerable swirly whirly galaxies, inside countless spinning solar systems and on trillions upon trillions of rocky planets, there has been but one lifeform whose flesh has been so overwhelmingly tasty and insatiable to others that its whole evolution has been geared towards concealing it.

For hundreds of thousands of years, this lifeform has carefully evolved to hide its delicious flesh.

Its repulsive fat head, protruding snout and mischievous eyes are only matched for sheer ugliness by the grotesque features found sporting a member of the House of Lords.

Its portly body is covered in short, stiff, coarse hairs, which plods flat-footed upon its stumpy legs as it waddles about in a pool of filthy mud and excrement.

And to further deter other beings in discovering its bodily scrumptiousness, it developed a rather rude, aggressive and obscene snort and trump.

Altogether, it had evolved its appearance to portray a most unpleasant dish.

Imagine then, if you will, that only a few thousand years ago, this lifeform encountered a most unfortunate event. Perhaps either by some natural forest fire or volcanic spew, one of its species became entrapped and ultimately fried to death.

The sizzling remains of its body finally awakened the excited and feverish nostrils of its nearest neighbours – and so its species fate was sealed.

Bacon is a popular choice with many of the Earth’s apes and, as a result, has actually safeguarded the survival of the pig.

However, apart from this extraordinary exception, Earthlings don’t really like meat. They think they do… but they don’t.

Possibly due to the pig, they are self-imposed omnivores.

What the Earth apes really like… are nuts and berries. And this is no coincidence.

The evolution of the Earth ape has been manipulated and modified over millions of years by the tree.

The trees have encouraged the taste-buds of the ape to consume its fruits to spread their seeds far and wide.  An additional bonus is that the human apes will suck in all the nasty oxygen from the atmosphere and produce tasty carbon dioxide – the trees love this.

As it swung and scampered along the branches, the early nude primate’s hands were shaped perfectly to pick the fruit.

Over the years its body also adapted to the trees’ will. Its flat molars evolved to grind down the vegetation and nuts, and the jaw was able to move side to side to aid this. (Incidentally, the tiny canines that the humans possess are strictly for the pigs.)

A human’s intestinal tracts are long to allow the body more time to break down fibre and absorb the nutrients from plant-based foods. The seeds survive this process when excreted. On a recent visit to the toilets at a motorway service station, I observed several specimens which still contained fully-intact peanuts and sweetcorn – which supported my hypothesis.

Since the fabled pig of this blog alerted the apes to its succulent body, humans have been trying out all the other animals too.

As a result, their bellies now bloat and gurgle as they attempt to digest the rotting meat being shoved down into them. This can lead to food poisoning. The added fat and cholesterol also increases the Earth ape’s risk of heart disease, diabetes, strokes, cancer and obesity.

Today, the apes will drizzle their meat in sauces, sweet berries, salts, spices or herbs to trick their guts into gobbling it up.

Whilst on my weekly shop at one of Earth’s many supermarkets, I perused the aisles with intrigue. The fat apes loaded their trolleys with all sorts of sweet and salty treats. The plants potential offspring was still evident, only now it was joined with a vast array of chemically advanced breads, sauces, jellies and juices. It was interesting to note that meats were presented without their ugly faces.

 

Until next time, keep evolving!

 

How to Make Friends with the Universe: Advice for Earth’s Apes October 2016

captaincosmocornflakesArtwork: “Captain Cosmo’s Corn Flakes” by The Estrella Moon Workshop ©

As the universe is so unimaginably enormous, it can sometimes feel as though you are not getting the attention that you feel you deserve. So, in the meantime, Lets investigate how earthlings can bridge that gap, and make friends with the universe.

Congratulations to October’s winners who each receive an Alcorian invisibility cloak. The winning entries are;

  • ‘If you want to boldly go where no one has gone before… try the toilets on Starbase Delta 7, they stink! – Number 2 of the Battlestar Colonica as provided by Lynda Di Dopro
  • ‘Inconvenienced by changing your underwear on a daily basis? Save both time, energy and thought by dressing in seven pairs of socks and pants on a Sunday night, and then simply peeling one layer off at the end of each night until Saturday. Not only do you save valuable time, but your wash basket and underwear draw hinges get used less.’ – Captain Smirk of the Starship Improvise as provided by R G Walsh
  • ‘Try not to blow yourself up.’ – Adam Atom of The Quantum States as provided by John-Paul Matin
  • ‘It is common courtesy to pay for the hire of a time machine in advance.’ – The Time Travellers’ Society as provided by The Phantom Poet
  • ‘If unsure of which appendage to shake when greeting a new race, always avoid the middle one.’ – Captain Ray Starbeam of the Starship Astra as provided by J R Hampton

Do you have any top tips for humanity?

If you have a tip for the Earth Apes, simply email it to me along with your cosmic name & part of the universe from which you reside, and I’ll naturally select the best ones to post at the next round of How to Make Friends with the Universe: Advice for Earth Apes.

Send your cosmic top tips for humanity to polydandroid@hotmail.com in the body of the email.

Submission Guidelines;

  • Try to limit your top tips to one line.
  • Include your cosmic nom-de-plume and part of the Universe in which you reside – along with the name of who should be attributed to providing it.
  • Keep it simple, so that the Earth apes can read it.

 

Next deadline: 2nd December 2016

Art submissions

Do you have an illustration, painting, photograph or electronic masterpiece that you would like to showcase?

Then why not send it along to polydandroid@hotmail.com for consideration? Jpeg format desirable.

Include your name and any link to your personal website/blog.

A small remuneration will be deposited into your Interstellar account, which will be awaiting you when you finally learn how to leave your little planet and join the rest of the cosmic community.

 

 

Until next time, keep evolving!

 

 

*Polydandroid reserves the right to use your contribution in any future publication of this blog. Submission is taken as full acceptance. Copyright remains with the author/artist.

 

The Mating Dance of the Earth Ape

dandroiddanceArtwork: “The Mating Dance of the Earth Ape” by The PPC Spectrophonic Studio ©

“There is nothing so unappealing as sex appeal.”  – Dr Frigmund Zoid

When visiting Earth, the best place one can witness the elaborate mating rituals of the species is at the Jacaranda Nightclub.

Two female apes, who answer to the names of Tiffany and Stacey, insisted that I accompany them on what is commonly referred to as a “girl’s night out.” I decidedly accepted the invitation as it presented a unique opportunity to further study the female of the species’ social habits.

Firstly, it may be of some interest to consider the adopted plumage of the female, which is quite intricate and by all accounts very similar to that of the Tarazedan snub-nosed monkey.

To attract a mate, the female Tarazedan snub-nosed monkey will undertake a series of elaborate visual processes.

One such process is to display a swollen rump to the males. Her hindquarters are elevated and the fat of her lower torso is tightly compressed against the body to expose the round gluteal muscles. This is further accentuated by the monkey escalating the heels and walking on her toes, sometimes awkwardly.

Stacey demonstrated this task with ease as she clip-clopped and stumbled across Tiffany’s tiled kitchen floor whilst managing to skilfully maintain her balance by using half a bottle of Prosecco and a pink handbag – I opted for flats.

Several physiologic changes are also observable; the lips become pursed and are reddened, the eyes enlarge and eyelashes appear elongated. It is not uncommon to witness rows of snub-nosed primates admiring their reflections in ice-sheets whilst pouting and liberally applying black pigment to their lashes.

Fortunately for me, Tiffany had an extensive set of spare eye-lashes with the required length and volume, which she applied to my own face.

The Tarazedan snub-nosed monkey will often use olfactory signals. These odorants can be quite pungent. The Earth apes also apply synthetic scents to their bodies. This is actually quite a relief, as the apes’ natural pheromones are quite unpleasant to say the least. It is no wonder that Earthlings apply as much perfume to their bodies as is possible to attract a mate.

It appears that to prepare for the evening’s daunting encounter with the male of the species, Earth’s female apes will first consume an abnormally large amount of alcohol. By the time we spilled out of the taxi and tottered into the Jacaranda, my mental and social capacity was already reduced to that of a Tarazedan snub-nosed monkey – which made my professional observations and judgement all the more difficult. However, in the interests of science, I persevered.

The environment of the nightclub is appropriately designed. The music is extremely loud, the room is dark and bright lights dazzle you at every turn.

At the bar, male Earth apes can been seen displaying a wide range of vocal and gestural communications, including whooping, chest pounding, back slapping and downing copious amounts of alcohol.

Then… the mating dance of the Earth apes begin.

It appears that before any actually dancing should commence, the custom is for the males and females to scrutinise each other, whilst making it perfectly clear that this is the exact thing that they are not doing.

In the early stages, the males approach cautiously. It would be detrimental for their possibility of mating if they were to engage with the female prematurely.

It is not uncommon to see them, with chest puffed out, stroll towards a female before taking a last second diversion – the game is set.

The contest to establish an alpha male is apparent. Often congregating in groups, the males become excitable when observing the females, especially the ones with very long eyelashes, reddened lips and high heels. The male who can whoop the loudest and appear largest to the others will often be nominated as the leader – it now befalls on them to establish first contact with a female troop.

Cautiously, I follow Tiffany and Stacey out onto the dance floor, beginning with a slight shuffle, adding a bounce and upon finding a space; a wiggle – however, it is not necessary to do these things in time with the music.

The dance floor is an intimidating arena. Sambuca-fuelled apes, beer-belching monkeys and tequila-induced baboons swing wildly to the rhythms. One ape feverishly began to gesticulate in a peculiar manner to my right. I was unsure of the signals – which was not helped by my fake eye-lash becoming slightly unstuck and obstructing my view.

Noticing that I had become disorientated, (along with the fact that Stacey had now chosen to exuberantly exchange her saliva with another ape) Tiffany took me to the safety of the toilets.

The last thing I can remember is violently heaving into the toilet bowl.

I awoke the following afternoon on Tiffany’s sofa to the smell of fried eggs. Stacey’s male ape had left an hour earlier – the evening had been a success.

In all my studies of the diverse mating rituals across the galaxy, none have been as exasperating as the one performed by Earth’s apes. It’s a wonder they have made it this far.

 

Until next time, keep evolving!

 

The Rise and Fall of the Machines

dandroidrisemachinesArtwork: “The Rise and Fall of the Machines” by The PPC Spectrophonic Studio ©

“Only a customer-centric universe (Where the customer is at the centre of all the celestial commodities) needs a robot.”  – Professor Su Matic

So, I’m at the supermarket, and in an attempt to avoid the inexorable pre-programmed customer-friendly chatter of a cashier ape, I plump for the self-service option. Only now, I have a bureaucratic, stuck-up machine with a superiority complex telling me I have an unexpected item in the bagging area. Sound familiar?

I have no idea of what the machine was expecting, and even less of a notion of what it believes the unexpected item is. I cannot see anything other than the two tins of pineapple chunks and pot of low fat raspberry yogurt that it was happy to acknowledge earlier -there is no reasoning with the machine.

I look around, but the human ape is not there to help me. A red light alerts other shoppers to my offence and so I begin to protest my innocence… I am not a thief.

I suspect that even the gormless expression I adapt, whilst pretending to look for an unexpected item in the bagging area, does not fool anyone. I am to remain still until the proper authorities arrive to examine me, at which point I am very eager to demonstrate that I have not stashed anything out of sorts into the bagging area.

Ruefully, I look over to the shoppers that chose the queue with a biological cashier – her superficial smile and friendly demeanour seems a lot more welcoming to me now. She wouldn’t make me feel like a criminal over a reduced packet of butterly spread.

Would a world of machines doing humanoid’s jobs really be such a good thing?

It is very typical for a planet taking its first tantalising steps towards being a class 1 civilization, to begin employing robots.

Driverless cars, artificially-intelligent vacuum cleaners, automated call-centre operatives, electronic soldiers, mechanised bank tellers, high-definition babysitters and digitalised bartenders are usually employed relatively quickly.

For example; on Seginus 6, the bartenders are designed so that they can analyse a customer’s breath, posture and pupil dilation – to determine whether they can have that one last pint of Arcturan ale or not. Incidentally, this is why no one ever visits Seginus 6 anymore.

The inhabitants of Gorgonea Tertia have become so accustomed to their mechanised slaves, that they now let them run the entire planet for them. The Gorgoneans have evolved to let their robots take care of everything, and as such, they no longer need to think for themselves. Their robots look after them. Their robots take care of everything. Their robots know what to do. Their robots are their child-carers, nurses, servants, police, judges, juries and executioners. Their robots are also their undertakers.

Finally, the human ape comes to my aid. He is not interested in checking my bags or examining my character – my protestations fall on deaf ears. He knows the machine is stupid, he works with it every day. With a swipe of his card I am allowed to proceed with my shopping. Now, if only I can get through the next sixteen items without the machine accusing me of another misdemeanour, I am free.

Until next time, keep evolving!

It’s the End of the World as We Know It

hazardous-for-the-environmentArtwork: “Hazardous for the Environment” CLP Pictogram (Public Domain)

“You cannot teach an old ape new tricks.”  – ‘The Earthling Bop’ by The Big Bang Band

Whilst on a relaxing galactic cruise, Mr and Mrs Queegansplatz of Kornephoros 12 were rudely and inexplicably ejected from their hammocks as the Captain had to make a sudden and dramatic hard turn to avoid a 900 kilogram manhole cover, which was careering past the ship’s starboard bow.

Enraged by this event, the Queegansplatz, along with many of the passengers of the Starship Queen Zillibeta II, immediately sought compensation from the Asterion Cruise Line Company.

Subsequently, representatives of the company sought out the destination of the object, and after several years of feverishly spinning around the sector in their little flying saucers, they finally located it as originating from a tiny and insignificant little planet named Earth.

Shocked and disgusted by the amount of debris that was beginning to accumulate around the orbit of this planet, Galactic authorities immediately imposed Health and Safety regulation 2.4 upon the damn dirty apes, along with instructions to promptly clean up their mess and keep the galaxy tidy. However, the dumb ape that received this notice, unfortunately misunderstood, promptly circled it, and wrote the word WOW! in big letters beside it. As a result the planet is now under quarantine until further notice.

Oh, and the origin of the 900 kilogram steel plate cap. It was sent hurtling at approximately six times the escape velocity from Earth as a result of Operation Plumbbob. A series of nuclear explosions at the Nevada test site in the USA from 1957.

Fortunately, after spending some time on this little planet, I have noticed that some of the younger apes have recently began to take note.

On flying back from a recent holiday in the Azores, Alisha, my friend Tracey’s eldest daughter, proudly told me how her university group has successfully began a leafleting campaign to highlight the dreadful effects of deforestation on the planet.

Alisha is passionate about the environment and is only a further 200 signatures away from her target on her internet campaign to ban fossil fuels by the Earth year 2030.

I have to agree with her. It is odd for a race that has discovered renewable energy such as wind turbines and photovoltaic solar panels, to continue to dig up and burn million-year-old trees and plankton which result in increased atmospheric carbon dioxide and methane levels – Phewy! Is it me or is it getting hot around here?

After helping Alisha plant a few new saplings in her garden, we wash up. I can’t help but notice the plastic microbeads and anti-bacterial soap that she uses, gurgling down the plug hole.

High level nuclear waste may take as much as 10,000 years of isolation until it is safe for the environment. Unfortunately, Earthlings don’t have that much time.

The ongoing wheezing of car exhausts, mass deforestation, burning fossils, spewing chimneys, spurting aerosols, bloated landfills, regurgitating sewage-pipes, over farming and flatulent paddy fields may see the end of the Anthropocene epoch on Earth well before then – despite Alisha’s efforts.

On arriving home, I sign Alisha’s online petition. Only another 199 signatures to go.

 

Until next time, keep evolving!

How to Make Friends with the Universe: Advice for Earth’s Apes August 2016

HOVER BOOTS EMWArtwork: “Hover Boots” by The Estrella Moon Workshop ©

As the universe is so unimaginably enormous, it can sometimes feel as though you are not getting the attention that you feel you deserve. So, in the meantime, Lets investigate how earthlings can bridge that gap, and make friends with the universe.

August’s winning cosmic proverbs are;

  • ‘yIn Hegh bI’reS’ Translated to:‘Life is the beginning of death.’ – Chancellor Gortok of Omega Leonis as provided by Lynda Di Dopro
  • ‘Ring before you ping!’ – Dumpy Rustynut as provided by Rachel Irvin
  • ‘Medicine is the best medicine.’ – Doctor Philtrum of the Federal Republic of Macronesia as provided by Donald Pidory
  • ‘Three heads are better than two.’ – Attributed to Friar Zumphrey the Obstinate of Zeta Herculis as provided by Trudy Utterly

 

Do you have any top tips for humanity?

If you have a tip for the Earth Apes, simply email it to me along with your cosmic name & part of the universe from which you reside, and I’ll naturally select the best ones to post at the next round of How to Make Friends with the Universe: Advice for Earth Apes.

Send your cosmic top tips for humanity to polydandroid@hotmail.com in the body of the email.

Submission Guidelines;

  • Try to limit your top tips to one line.
  • Include your cosmic nom-de-plume and part of the Universe in which you reside – along with the name of who should be attributed to providing it.
  • Keep it simple, so that the Earth apes can read it.

 

Art submissions

Do you have an illustration, painting, photograph or electronic masterpiece that you would like to showcase?

Then why not send it along to polydandroid@hotmail.com for consideration? Jpeg format desirable.

Include your name and any link to your personal website/blog.

A small remuneration will be deposited into your Interstellar account, which will be awaiting you when you finally learn how to leave your little planet and join the rest of the cosmic community.

 

Until next time, keep evolving!

 

 

*Polydandroid reserves the right to use your contribution in any future publication of this blog. Submission is taken as full acceptance. Copyright remains with the author/artist.

Attack of the Earth Apes

Pioneer10-plaqueArtwork: “Pioneer10 PlaqueDesigned by Carl Sagan and Frank Drake. Artwork prepared by Linda Salzman Sagan / NASA – (Public Domain)

“The trouble with humans is that they all look the same.” – Dame Marginal Slightly

After spending 30 minutes ranting about how inadequate the postal service is, describing in detail the pains I have been getting in my lower back, and protesting about the annoying way that the receptionist from work keeps calling me ‘Dolly’… I realised that the human ape before me was not in fact Verity after all, but someone named Alan.

I left the ape standing befuddled, made my excuses, then quickly hurried down the road and headed home.

Whilst I stretched out on the sofa, I read through the accumulation of mail that had greeted me on my doorstep.

Within the bundle of take-away menus, bank statements and charity bags, I was intrigued to find a hand written letter.

The letter was simple and read;

“You are not welcome! Foreigners out! Go back to where you came from, scumbag!”

I was intrigued. How did the Earth ape know? I had been very meticulous in disguising myself here, since landing upon this little planet.

Maybe it was the accent, I thought. I could never fully master the funny intonations with which humans speak.

Later that evening, I decided to show the letter to my ape-friend, Verity.

“Well, where are you from exactly?” she asked.

“I’m an Alkaidian.” I confessed.

“I knew it!” she said, “I always thought I could detect a bit of the east in you.”

“It depends from where you’re looking.” I replied.

I quizzed her more as the evening progressed. Essentially, the planet is divided by continent, and these sectors are further divided into countries.

“So how do I know where one starts and the other ends?” I asked.

Verity showed me a map on her phone and explained to me that there are borders between them.

“Ah, I see!” I said, “So you look down and see these lines on the floor then?”

Verity further explained that these lines are in fact ‘imaginary’ and you couldn’t actually see them.

The division didn’t stop there. The countries are further sub-divided into regions, some of which contained cities and the cities are further sub-divided into even more areas. ‘Imaginary lines’

I asked Verity why someone would not want me to be within their imaginary borders.

“Well,” she began. “It could be that you speak differently, or that you eat different types of food, or that you have a different skin colour.” She then pointed to a place called Africa, and explained to me that the humans which come from that place have slightly darker skin tones.

“Ah, like Dr Bennett, from next door?” I said.

“Exactly.” she said.

Funny, I could have sworn that he’d told me he was from Ashby-de-la-Zouch.

After Verity left, I was more puzzled than ever. Apparently, all of the Earth’s apes originated from Africa – including the one that wrote the letter.

Also, I discovered that sometimes people on one side of the planet moved to another side because they were hungry, or poor, or because they were escaping from the brutality inflicted by other savage apes.

Apparently, there are quite a few Earth apes which are very upset about all of this – hence, my letter.

Furthermore, a proportion of feral apes on this planet feel compelled to demonstrate their primitive territorial impulses by attacking their fellow apes.

It seems bizarre to me that these apes are under the impression that there is more than one human race residing on their tiny planet.

It reminded me very much of the inhabitants of Mintaka 9.

The Mintakans were a progressive race who lived on a planet slightly smaller than Earth. The Mintakans on one side of the planet were red with blue spots whereas the Mintakans on the other side were blue with red spots.

Just as the race was about to launch their new galactic class starship and join the rest of the cosmic community, a red-spotted Mintakan said something insulting about a blue-spotted one. The blue-spotted Mintakans were aghast and subsequently blew up half the planet in retaliation – and so thus ended their cosmic voyage.

I often wonder whether Earthling’s would notice their similarities, rather than their differences, if they could look up towards their little planet from a bedroom window on a cool Alkaidian night.

As I stuck the letter onto the fridge door, I pondered whether I should pen a response to request further dialogue (but somehow, I don’t think that was the ape’s intention.)

Until next time, keep evolving!

How Artificially Intelligent Are You?

PastPresentFfutureSpudragon16Artwork: “Past Present Future” by Spudragon ©

Small minds think alike.” – Tagline for the Algolian B-movie ‘Invaders from Earth.’

On this little planet, one can observe an intelligent animal named a bottlenose dolphin. It has developed a rather intelligent feeding method. In shallow waters, it swims in a circle whilst beating its tail on the sea bed – stirring up a cloud of mud and silt which corrals a shoal of unsuspecting fish. Encircled by the muddy net, the fish are trapped. As the shoal become tighter and tighter in the ever closing murky cloud, they panic. There is only one way out… by jumping – straight into the open mouths of a waiting pod of hungry dolphins.

Of course, Sunil knew this. He also knew that the dolphin is a mammal and not a fish, as Tiffany had thought.

Sunil can recall pi to 16 digits, can name most of the capital cities of the world and can list all of the elements in the periodic table. However, this afternoon he seemed to have trouble opening the packaging of his tuna mayonnaise sandwiches.

In the office today, the topic of conversation had turned to whether there is intelligent life in the universe… an unusually cerebral subject for these apes. I was intrigued.

The conversation was initiated by Tracey who had read an article in a daily newspaper which described the latest discovery of another exoplanet.

Tracey’s Hypothesis;

“I can remember reading on the internet something about the Apollo astronauts seeing aliens from out of the window of their spaceship.” She began. “My auntie, Shelia, says that she was abducted when she was a little girl by some grey aliens with spooky big black eyes.” She added.

She continued to elaborate on her idea, stating that as so many people claim to be abducted, then statistically, they can’t all be nuts… so it has to be true – there is intelligent life in the universe.

Sunil’s Hypothesis;

Sunil found some compelling evidence on the internet. As his finger scrolled along the surface of his smartphone, he relayed some facts to the others. ‘There are approximately 100 thousand million stars in the Milky Way.’ ‘There have been more than 3,000 exoplanets discovered in our galaxy alone.’ And ‘Tardigrades can survive in outer space.’

He further went on to add that he’d calculated the chances of intelligent extra-terrestrial life in the galaxy as being over one billion by using the Drake Equation. He had an app for it. “It’s science.” He boasted.

Tiffany’s Hypothesis;

“Oh, you can’t trust the Scientists.” Tiffany declared, “They don’t actually ‘know’ anything, they just have ‘theories’.”

She explained, “Why should my opinion matter any less than theirs?” As far as Tiffany was concerned, she didn’t believe in aliens, zombies or dinosaurs and no one could convince her otherwise. That’s her opinion and it should be respected. Besides, if there were so many aliens around – where were they?

It was interesting to witness the breadth of ideas that these three Earth apes brought to the table and so I asked them each to define intelligence.

Tracey alluded to the fact that her brain was like a computer and all of the information that she read is stored inside. The more information – the more intelligent. That… and eating oily fish.

Sunil used a search engine and pointed to a definition. ‘Intelligence is the ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills.’

Tiffany said that it was to know when to stop thinking.

Before leaving the office, Sunil began to panic. The battery on his smartphone was down to 2% and he didn’t have his charger with him. What’s more, he relied on the inbuilt sat-nav to guide him back to Hinckley.

Tracey had read somewhere that putting the battery in the fridge will make it last longer whereas in Tiffany’s opinion, he could still use the sat-nav without his phone actually being on.

After several minutes of examining the battery life after intermittent spells in the fridge, it was agreed by all that Sunil would spend the night in Tracey’s box room (she has an inflatable bed he could use) whilst Tiffany would bring her spare phone charger in tomorrow morning – “It was always good to have two,” she explained whilst tapping her finger to the side of her skull. “Just in case of an emergency.”

In an act of social solidarity, we all agreed to join Sunil at Tracey’s for dinner. We ordered Chinese take-away food, played a game of Trivial Pursuit and then watched a documentary about the bottlenose dolphin – a remarkably intelligent animal.

In the galaxy there is a simple test to evaluate the intelligence of sentient beings – The Quasanberg Test.

Developed by Dr Zigfreed Quasanberg of Delta Trianguli, the test has become an absolute standard for anyone wanting a job in the galactic service industry.

I have added the test as an addendum to this blog. Why not give it a try?

Until next time, keep evolving!

 

 

 

The Quasanberg Test

(Answers and scores below)

  1. Sargasian snub-nosed sauropods are pink. What colour are Sargasian snub-nosed sauropods?
  1. Only 4% of this statement is true. True or false?
  1. Computer A states that Computer B is humanoid. Computer B states that Computer A is humanoid. Which computer is humanoid?
  1. If there are five different planets, each a different colour, and the blue planet is before the red, but two spaces in either direction from the green, who owns the fish?
  1. Place the following numbers into the correct order; 5,3,13,2,8 and 1.
  1. How many Earthlings does it take to change a lightbulb?

 

 

Answers

  1. Green
  2. True
  3. Computer A
  4. The one to the left of the yellow planet
  5. 5,3,13,2,8 and 1.
  6. One

 

Score

0  Congratulations. You scored an above average intelligence quotient for a biological lifeform.

1 – 2 Oh dear. You have the same level of intelligence as an Omicronian television recorder.

3 – 4 Interesting. Have you ever considered applying for employment as a photocopier?

5 – 6 A typical score for a single-celled organism. Please refrain from reproduction.