Sea Monkeys and Life

Hi, I’m Shari. I’ve been writing for several years now. I have completed three novels and a book of short stories and published none. Therefore, I can’t think of anything better to do than blog. I could be sending out query letters and story synopsis’s and what have you, but today I’d like to talk about Sea Monkey’s. Since I don’t have a picture of an actual Sea Monkey, I’ve used a rather unflattering shot of my dog Bodie who got stuck under the sofa the other day and I, being sensitive and kind, took a picture of him. I think he does look a bit like one from this angle.

When I was a kid I really wanted Sea Monkeys.  I used to see the ads in the back of comic books and I asked Dad to give me the dollar and fifty cents, so that I could order them.  He wouldn’t let me.  He said that Sea Monkeys were a scam and that I’d be disappointed.  Still, I persisted.  I looked longingly at the ad, the little creature with his crown and scepter, next to him, his demure bride.  Below in tiny, tiny print was a sentence that read: Warning, Illustration does not depict Artemia.  What the heck does that mean?  My little eleven year old brain pondered this and when I asked Dad, he said, “That means they aren’t worth buying.”

To this day, I still want my Sea Monkeys.  I think that life is like that, sometimes you have to learn the hard way.  It would have done me good to watch a bowl of smelly, brackish water teem with little maggot like creatures.

A more recent example of this was something that happened a couple of years ago.  It was late at night and I was flipping around and came across Jewelry Television or JTV as the old ladies call it.  Now, in the somber light of day, I would never watch such a program, but it was past midnight and my husband had gone to bed.  I watched as the southern lady with very yellow hair paraded one bejeweled spectacle after another.  Names like ‘Diamonique’ were being thrown about.  I knew that what they were selling was crap, yes I knew it but something primal in me said, “Sea Monkeys, for women.”  There was this ring.  Rare green garnet and there were only 50,000 of them left.  I wanted it and now that I’m a grown up, there is no one to stop me.  No one to say, “You can’t buy that, it’s crap, you’ll regret it.”

So I did.  I ordered one rare green garnet ring.  It arrived a week later.  I quickly unwrapped the package to find that the illustration did not depict Artemia at all. (Metaphorically speaking)  The stones were not dark green but instead, a weak insipid pale color.  The gold was so thin that the stones were barely hanging on for dear life.  I put it on and a stone fell out.  After sending it back at my expense, they did give me a credit, minus the original shipping and handling.  It was a thirty dollar mistake and I’m not ashamed.  Yes, I knew better but sometimes that’s just how it has to be.

Once I was in a supermarket and a little boy was crying.  An exasperated mother was trying to get her boy to stop calm down.  I listened in on the conversation.  “Ethan, why did you take that?”

“I saw it, and I wanted it.”

Some things never change.