This morning I was a lab tech working in a coral reconstruction complex. The tank-grown coral chunks kept on being eaten and dying and failing to increase/reproduce. Then we discovered a random coral plate growing down the back of one of the tanks, and I chucked it into one of the regrowth zones, and it actually took! And before long we were finding these corals everywhere in the lab and the scientists were all umming and ahing but all the lab techs and junior researchers were chucking these little plate corals out everywhere and they were doing really well, growing fast, resistant to predators, and it was all just like that bit at the beginning of a disaster movie where you're geting to know all the characters so you'll care when they get horribly killed.
Nothing like as exciting as the one I had at the weekend, though, where I got experimentally turned into a small, golden-haired monkey by the mad scientist working for the local Disaster Preparedness Committee and her chortling dinosaur assistant, while a huge cupboard full of the preserved heads of Local Councillors assured me that this was all above board and what the people wanted. Being a monkey wasn't as much fun as you'd think, and I couldn't stop worrying about why the dinosaur had said, "you can consider this to be your colonic" before bathing my head in confusing golden light. Had I misheard? Did the dinosaur not know what "colonic" meant? Did it mean something different if you were a dinosaur?
I had a sinking feeling (not helped by timscience
, who was mostly concerned that I shouldn't blame the dinosaur, who was just following orders and doubtless had a sweetheart and a clutch of eggs to support) that it was all somehow my fault, and that as a Government worker I should have known that something like this was sure to happen. That I might even have worked on the project during the consultation rounds.
Probably with a poll that loooked something like this:
Ethnicity: I consider myself to be
Proximity to Flood Plain: I live in
A naturally flood-safe zone
A maintained flood-safe zone
A regular seasonal flood alert zone
A frequent inundation area
I am a swamp-zone resident
Increasing floods: I am worried about
Compulsory purchase of waterside property
Having to move to another area
Costs of/getting insurance
Having to give up my car
Having to live closer to dinosaurs
Intimidation by geese and swans
Other (please specify)
Options: In the event of further floods I would be prepared to consider:
Moving to another area
Smaller, more tightly packed dwellings
Larger, communal dwellings
Floating or stilted dwellings (separate to the existing swamp zone)
Flood adaptation (partial genetic alteration, e.g. skin waterproofing, gills)
Flood adaptation (complete genetic alteration, e.g. monkey, dolphin)
Other (please specify)
Any more suggestions, ideas or concerns?
In case you're wondering, the swamp zone is the ghetto where the dinosaurs live.
I've been ill. I may still be a little feverish.