There Can Be Only One

One of the reasons this page is interesting to you guys is that you’ll find information and subject matter that you rarely find anywhere else. Part of that is that I have an enquiring mind and have come to view a good day as any day I learn something new. The other part is that news feeds seem to deliver stranger news to me than to others (people are always asking where I find my stories). It’s difficult knowing things that aren’t that commonly known though, and has lead to more than one awkward silence as I say something that confuses those around me. Consider the following conversation that you can find here:
Darko – “Dennis, I will never die.”
Me – “You’re a jellyfish?”
Then everyone gets confused, the awkward silences start, and I want to die a little. Yeah, you get how it goes.

Meet the Turritopsis Nutricula. Like most jellyfish the Turritopsis Nutricula has two distinct states to it’s lifespan – the polypoid stage and the medusa stage. The polypoid stage is the childhood of the creature where it is just a small stalk with feeding tentacles. The medusa stage is shown in the image and is the fully grown jellyfish, where it is able to reproduce. Now here’s where things get interesting. Where most jellyfish have a lifespan that can range between a couple of hours and several months, Turritopsis Nutricula has found a way to expand that short lifespan so that it will never die of old age. This particular jellyfish has learned to switch back to its polypoid stage at will, allowing it to grow to be an adult again and again. This creature has learned to cheat death through old age.

Of course, while Turritopsis Nutricula is biologically immortal, that doesn’t mean they never die. The polypoid stage in particular is unusually weak against predators and disease (studies are underway to see if this is due to cellular degeneration after repeatedly reverting to a younger stage). That hasn’t stopped scientists from noticing the similarities between the process Turritopsis Nutricula uses to get younger and our own cellular regeneration capabilities and attempting to find a way for humans to do the same thing.

My thoughts on this have been well documented in an absolutely haunting song by Queen – Who Wants To Live Forever?

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28 thoughts on “There Can Be Only One

  1. Actually jellyfish are not creepy at all. Have you ever tried to pad one on the 'head' while diving? In their own element they are soft and sort of cute, like small furry animals would be on land. Except for the boxfish, of course. Stay away from that. However, when they are out of the water, they are just lumps of snotty slime.

  2. Whenever I consider the concept of immortality, I always have a mental picture of where an immortal would ultimately (billions of years hence) end up – floating through space after either a big crunch or a big freeze (thus, alone, because there'll be nobody left in the universe).Which wouldn't be fun.Regarding the jellyfish, if this aging/de-aging/aging thing was somehow transferred to humans, can you imagine how many forms we'd have to fill out? The census alone would be confusing as hell. Census 2010When Were You Born?1971How Old Are You At The Time of Filling In This Census?2,121,294 Years, 3 months, 2 Weeks and 4 Days

  3. It's true what Lord Furie says. If he didn't like you, he would send you a nice box of chocolates with a card saying 'You're The Best' or make an arrangement with your employer allowing you a straight forteen days fully payed vacation. That is the magnitude of his evil.

  4. Originally posted by Lion:

    he would send you a nice box of chocolates with a card saying 'You're The Best'

    That would be a really scary gesture, and you'd know for sure that there was something seriously wrong! :insane:

  5. Tell me about it. Have you seen that creepy ninja who stalks those girls and puts chocolates and a photo of himself on their nightstand while the poor girls sleep? Can you imagine how terrified she feels when she wakes up? πŸ˜₯

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