Dolphins Evolve Opposable Thumbs

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Vol 36 Issue 30

Man Who Actually Needs Grey Poupon Unable To Bring Self To Ask

ABERDEEN, MD–Sophie's Sandwich Shop patron Louis Worth, a longtime user of Grey Poupon dijon mustard, could not bring himself to ask for the product Monday when he actually needed it. "There's usually a bottle on one of the tables, but this time there wasn't," Worth said. "I actually said 'Pardon me' to the guy behind the counter, but then stopped in my tracks. I realized that if I actually asked, the guy would probably act all funny and say, 'But, of course,' in a rich-guy voice. So I just ate my turkey sandwich without it."

Radio Shack Salesman 'A Little Out Of It Today'

NAPLES, FL–Radio Shack employee Denny Hasselbeck confessed Monday that he is "a little out of it today." "Sorry, man, I was up pretty late last night," the 22-year-old Hasselbeck told a customer who asked three times if the store had any 10-foot coaxial cable in stock. "My buddy Josh from Boulder was in town and, well, you know." In the past year, Hasselbeck has been out of it to varying degrees while working at Camelot Music, Earl Scheib Paint & Body, and Panda Express.

Private Eye's Office Ransacked For Fourth Time This Month

NEW ORLEANS–Private investigator Max McShane encountered a familiar sight Monday, entering his Bourbon Street office to find his file cabinets overturned, his spare necktie slung across a blade of a still-rotating ceiling fan, and his black, rotary-dial phone buzzing off the hook. "I just cleaned up this place from the last ransacking," McShane said. "Someone obviously wants me off the King murder case. Unless last Friday's ransacking was to scare me off the King case. Then this is probably about the Adams diamond theft."

Area Man's Hairstyle History Eerily Mirrors Kevin Bacon's

DAYTON, OH–For more than 15 years, Eric Rouse's hairstyles have eerily mirrored those of actor Kevin Bacon, friends of the 29-year-old reported Monday. "Remember around the time of Footloose, how Kevin Bacon's hair was all spiky? So was Eric's," friend Jeff Zell said. "Then, right about when Tremors came out, they both had it long and parted down the middle. Now they both sort of have it slicked back." Zell said he doesn't think Rouse, who is not a Bacon fan, is doing it on purpose, but noted that it's "just kinda weird."

They Might Be Giants Behind The Music Episode Lacks Sex, Drugs

NEW YORK–The new They Might Be Giants episode of VH1's Behind The Music is devoid of sex and drugs, sources reported Monday. "Man, we haven't had that much trouble finding something juicy since the 'Weird Al' episode," VH1 senior vice-president Bill Flanagan said. "We can almost always hit paydirt with a band's groupies, but in They Might Be Giants' case, they're all 31-year-old computer programmers." The They Might Be Giants episode largely focused on keyboardist/accordionist John Linnell's harrowing early-'90s addiction to Tetris.
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Dolphins Evolve Opposable Thumbs

HONOLULU–In an announcement with grave implications for the primacy of the species of man, marine biologists at the Hawaii Oceanographic Institute reported Monday that dolphins, or family Delphinidae, have evolved opposable thumbs on their pectoral fins.

One of the evolved dolphins, whose opposable thumbs have struck fear in the hearts of humankind.

"I believe I speak for the entire human race when I say, 'Holy fuck,'" said Oceanographic Institute director Dr. James Aoki, noting that the dolphin has a cranial capacity 40 percent greater than that of humans. "That's it for us monkeys."

Aoki strongly urged humans, especially those living near the sea, to learn to communicate using a system of clicks and whistles in a frequency range of 4 to 150 kHz. He also encouraged humans to "start practicing their echolocation as soon as possible."

Delphinologists have reported more than 7,000 cases of spontaneous opposable-digit manifestation in the past two weeks alone, with "thumbs" observed on the bottle-nosed dolphin, the Atlantic humpback dolphin, and even the rare Ganges River dolphin.

"It appears to be species-wide," said dolphin specialist Clifford Brees of the Kewalo Basin Marine Mammal Laboratory, speaking from the shark cage he welded shut around himself late Monday. "And it may be even worse: We haven't exactly been eager to check for thumbs on other marine mammals belonging to the order of cetaceans, such as the killer whale. Oh, Christ, we're really in the soup now."

Thus far, all the opposable digits encountered appear to be fully functional, making it possible for dolphins–believed to be capable of faster and more complex cogitation than man–to manipulate objects, fashion tools, and construct rudimentary pulley and lever systems.

A primitive axe crafted out of driftwood and shell that is believed to be the handiwork of dolphins.

"They really seem to be making up for lost time with this thumb thing," said Dr. Jim Kuczaj, a University of California–San Diego biologist who has studied the seasonal behavior of dolphins for more than 30 years. "Last Friday, a crude seaweed-and-shell abacus washed up on the beach near Hilo, Hawaii. The next day, a far more sophisticated abacus, fashioned from some unknown material and capable of calculating equations involving numbers of up to 16 digits, washed up on the same beach. The day after that, the beach was littered with thousands of what turned out to be coral-silicate and kelp-based biomicrocircuitry."

"My God," Kuczaj added. "What are they doing down there?"

It is unknown what precipitated the dolphins' sudden development of opposable thumbs. Some dolphin behaviorists believe that the gentle marine mammal, pushed to the brink by humanity's reckless pollution and exploitation of the sea, tapped into some previously unmined mental powers to spontaneously generate a thumb-like appendage. However, given that 95 percent of the world's dolphin experts have committed suicide since learning of the development, the full story may never be known.

"You must believe, sleek ocean masters, that many of us homo sapiens weep with shame and disgust over the degradation to which our species has subjected our All-Mother, the Great World-Sea," read the suicide note of Dr. Richard Morse, a Brisbane, Australia, delphinologist and regular contributor to Marine Mammal Science. "If you are reading this, I estimate that it is the day we know as August 31, 2000. Please be decent and kind masters to our poor ape-race. Oh, God, I'm so sorry about the tracking collars."

"Scientists once wondered whether dolphins, with their remarkably advanced social and language structures, are actually smarter than we are," said Aoki, ushering reporters out of the laboratory he claimed "will either be a smoking hole or a zoo exhibit in the coming Dolphin Age." "Well, we're not wondering anymore."

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