Wednesday, October 06, 2010

The Tale of a Sperm

Does a sperm ever get tired? I mean. just flat-out, deep-breathing, muscle-aching, beat-up, wasted, exhausted tired? I do when I think about them.

First of all, if you're a sperm, you're not very big. You're just a single cell. That's it...a single cell, seen only by a microscope. On top of which, inside, amongst many other things you're carrying 23 chromosomes, designed to seek 23 other chromosomes somewhere out in a universe; which a goal that is somewhat elusive. They say the whole human race is depending on you. Talk about a soldier's backpack. The whole human race, all six billion of them, are depending on you. (And you know when the original model of you was created: 1 and a half million years ago? That's right. The first one of you was created one and a half million years age. So you really don't have the benefit of a modern design!)

You've got a head, surrounded by some chemical stuff around it, designed to help you penetrate something called an egg (whatever the hell that is). You also have a neck and a long tail. The tail is designed to move you forward; and get this: it is designed in such a way that you can't go backward. Right. I mean it: that's the way your tail works. You can only go forward. Forward march! Like a Marine "grunt" on a WWII landing craft, doors opening, depositing you on the sands of Iwo Jima with your Sargent holding a bayonet an inch from your asshole saying: "Forward, march!

Suddenly, out of nowhere, due to some huge thing sometimes called a prick getting hard, and, as they say, "getting off" you and a million other cohorts are suddenly swept up by some moist stuff called semen. It surrounds all of you like a wave set loose by a hurricane. You are summarily shot out of a cannon with millions of other moisture-surrounded competitors into this narrow (sometimes wide; it doesn't depend on you. The choice was made by the "prick" and the egg holder) receiving vessel. They call it a vagina. Caught up in the tide of moisture, you start your journey forward, swimming like hell, upstream. By the way, you better stay withing the moisture. Without the moisture, you die.

Now...if all this isn't bad enough, and here is the penultimate exhausting part of the whole "being-a-sperm-reality": only one of you, amongst the million other spear swimming along with you (everybody is going forward, remember, probably bumping like hell into one another) is going to MAYBE win. MAYBE.

Winning is getting to one egg. Right, at the end of this journey there is one egg...ONE...fucking...egg...hopefully waiting to embrace one of you amongst a million or so other competing sperm. Talk about a lottery.

So let's say you're a winner; the athlete amongst athletes. You get there first with the most-est. Does anyone cheer your victory? No, just the opposite. The egg pushed you away, holds you off, plays hard to get. That's where the design part comes in. You now have to batter your head, aided by a helmet of chemicals, with tail churning, against this one egg who is not exactly welcoming you with open arms. So you batter and batter, get through...and for what? What is the pay-off for this long, tiring, winning effort? Your 23 chromosomes unite with the egg's 23 chromosomes and you are gone. You are no longer a sperm. You have disappeared, merged, co-joined, united. You are bye-bye. The egg goes on...oh, boy, does the egg go on! It hangs around dividing and dividing until it grows into a full fucking human form; sometimes a vagina holder, sometimes a "prick." It's all designed to be about 50-50. It doesn't matter for the sperm. Existential exhaustion--the long swim--has become existential extinction.

The Egg and the Sperm. Aesop should have told that one.


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