My friends have their own version of nerd-baiting. Sometimes they’ll throw out a ridiculous request just to see if someone will do it. Generally someone will take the bait.
Chikara67 made just such a request a week or two ago:
@seelix * cuddles up to * tell me a story about Horizontal gene transfer and radioactive pigs
So of course I had to try, and here’s the result in < 140 character segments:
Once upon a time there was a lonely bacteria. He was all alone in the world, no colony-mates or aggregates to spend time with.
Then one day he met someone new. This new individual was a bigger cell, but that was okay, because he had a thing for that.
So he begged the cell to take him home that night and devour him, literally. (Hey, you can find all kinds on Craigslist.)
He laid back to enjoy the consumption and subsequent darkness, but something strange happened.
In the midst of his rapture (for it was rapture. Again, you can find all kinds on Craigslist), he found that he was still whole.
More than that, he was whole and no longer lonely! So he decided he would dedicate the rest of his life to the cell.
If the cell survived, he would survive. He had a unique ability to produce ATP, which the cell loved more than anything.
So he spent the rest of his life making ATP for the cell, and it worked so well that the rest of the cell got their own bacteria.
And all of the bacteria and cells lived happily ever after in a codependent, but not parasitic relationship. The End.
So, it didn’t end up involving radioactive pigs, but that will be a Sexy Science Bedtime Story for another day. And possibly a podcast.