Greetings, glorious readers! I have caught up on grading, and it has made me feel a bit giddy and smug, and when I feel giddy and smug, I am more likely to speak to strangers at the grocery store, and when I am more likely to speak to strangers at the grocery store, I find myself caught up in awkward conversations about frog sex.
Fellow Grocery Store Patron #1: "Well, I think it's wrong. If I want my child to know about sex, I can teach him at home. The schools should stick to studying frogs and stuff."
Fellow Grocery Store Patron #2: "And fetal pigs. We did fetal pigs. We should make that a slogan, 'Pigs! No sex! Pigs!'"
Me: "Well, you know, that slogan might be confusing since 'Pigs!' sometimes means 'cops.'"
F.G.S.P. #1 and #2: [blank look]
Me: "And cops are allowed to have sex, right? I mean, I don't think you would get anywhere if people thought you were trying to ban cops from having sex."
F.G.S.P. #1: "I don't think anyone would think that."
Me: "You're probably right. But the other problem with your slogan is that pigs--actual pigs, not cops--also have sex. That's how you get more pigs. So a biology class that covers pigs might cover pig sex."
F.G.S.P. #2: "We just cut them up. We did not study pig sex. That would be totally unnecessary."
Me: "I suppose so. And you said fetal pigs, right? Because fetuses do not have sex, that I'm pretty sure of. Well, maybe fetal tribbles do. Dr. McCoy suggested they were born pregnant after all."
F.G.S.P. #1 and #2: [another even blanker look]
Me: "But tribbles are fiction. Probably."
F.G.S.P. #1: "What I'm trying to say is that you can have a good biology class without a unit on human reproduction. Sex education should happen at home."
Me: "Now frogs, they also have sex, but we didn't study that part in biology. Except for identifying the sexual organs when we cut them up."
F.G.S.P. #2: "Frogs don't have sex, do they? They come from tadpoles, right? And eggs?"
Me: "Yes, but to fertilize the eggs, they have to have sex. Frog sex."
F.G.S.P. #2: "Huh. I didn't know that. That's a weird thing to think about."
F.G.S.P. #1: "This is all beside the point. The point is that we need to talk to the schools about this unit. It's not decent."
Me: "Fruit flies have sex too. Did you guys do fruit flies? Ours escaped and went everywhere."
F.G.S.P. #2: "How does something that small have sex? I mean...isn't there, like, a size limit?"
Me: "I'm pretty sure size doesn't matter. Well, okay, it matters to me personally, but..."
F.G.S.P. #1: "This is completely off-topic."
Me: "But all you need for sex is to exchange DNA, I think. I mean, there is all that budding and splitting down the middle for single-celled organisms, but if you take two of them and they swap some genes to make a new little dude...I think that's all it takes to count as sex. Not necessarily good sex, of course."
F.G.S.P. #1: "Are you some kind of biology teacher?"
Me: "Definitely not!"
F.G.S.P. #1: "Then how do you know all of this?"
Me: "Well, I took biology. You know, in high school."
F.G.S.P. #2: "I don't remember any of this from my biology class. Are you sure that frogs have sex?"
Me: "Frogs. Fruit flies. People. Everybody has sex!"
Grocery store cashier: "Not in Publix, they don't. Paper or plastic?"