12.23.22 [on the 5 train]

i'm reading an excellent book about eels (mostly anguilla anguilla, european eels), and last night's chapters burrowed into the mysterious longevity they experience (vs. enjoy) when they are taken from the wild and thus aren't prompted to transition from their third life stage of yellow eelhood, or adolescence, to the fourth and final life stage of silver eelhood, or sexual maturity, which is when they grow reproductive organs, their stomachs dissolve into their bodies, and they return to the sargasso sea to breed and die. there was in particular the story of a small swedish eel that a little boy caught and threw in a well in the 19th century that ended up living in twilight down there for what some claim was like 150 years. stories about this brantevik eel, called åle by humans and commemorated when he died in 2014, are often paired with anguilla anguilla stock photos captioned something like "this is not the eel we're talking about; this eel is alive." the very old eel never got very large, and his eyes got much bigger than yellow eels' eyes usually do. the eel book author presents the deathless nonsleep of åle the well-eel as something like a busted vampire's existence in an anne rice novel or only lovers left alive (a 2013 jim jarmusch movie about vampires starring tilda swinton ostensibly so far up my alley that it might straight-up be my alley that i somehow hated so much it's actually a little disturbing to think about it now). how bummed can an eel be, and how should our appreciation of how bummed an eel can be matter, if it matters at all? in my first 13 years, as a person who was at least in theory willing to eat fish, i am almost positive i never had eel - i've never had most seafood, actually - and i'm glad. in other news, did you know that the sargasso sea is just a seaweed-covered extra-mysterious patch of the atlantic ocean that's been squared off with currents? ("sargasso" comes from the seaweed, a brown algae called sargassum.)

on things that aren't pleasurable for me, we ended up at a matisyahu concert at brooklyn bowl last night. the initial plan as of early this week was to go bowling on the lower east side with friends, said friends discovered the concert at brooklyn bowl and suggested we bowl and see the show, and said friends then got sick and bowed out, leading us to realize beneath a giant dreidel-shaped disco ball that we didn't know as much about spiritual reggae-beatboxing as we probably should have before committing to the evening. it was the worst show i've attended since high school friends peer pressured me into seeing jars of clay at the orange county fair! but i survived, which is more than poor åle can say.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

_M_D_F_ said...

<3

Anonymous said...

I read this!