OK, you can relax now, people. The big crisis in Russia is over. Everything is going to be all right.
Well, maybe not everything. I mean, there's still the whole Ukraine thing with its downed airliner, missiles and land mines, but at least Russian scientists know what the geckos are doing to one another again.
You've been following the saga of the geckos, right? It's only the biggest, most salacious news story of the year in the scientific world.
What happened was that the Russian space agency, Roscosmos, and the Institute of Medico-Biological Problems (IMBP) launched a satellite carrying some mushrooms, plant seeds, fruit flies and geckos a couple of weeks ago, but then they lost control of it. Now, thankfully, control of the Foton-M4 has been restored, and the scientists behind the satellite can get on with their invaluable experiments.
And what would those experiments be?
According to the IMBP's website, the geckos are in space for a "study of the effect of microgravity on sexual behavior."
Oh, yeah; I told you this story was salacious.
So I think I see what's going on. You send geckos into space with some mushrooms and fruit flies, maybe a Barry White album or two, and you let them get freaky. Essentially, you're trying to create the ideal conditions for a flying gecko orgy so that Russian scientists can spy on zero-gravity lizard sex. I can dig it. Whatever buffs your fender.
Here's the kinky twist, though: The scientists put five geckos on board. That means that either one little lizard is a creepy voyeur while the other four are pairing up, or else there's some wild stuff going down on that satellite. No wonder the scientists were so worried when they lost control. Who wouldn't want to watch a weightless gecko five-way?
I'll admit that I actually didn't know anything about this story until just a couple of days ago, but then, while searching for a column topic, I came across the following headline on the BBC News website: "Russia back in control of Foton gecko sex satellite." That was pretty much all I needed to see. I knew right then what I was going to be writing about.
In case you weren't familiar with what geckos look like, despite the ubiquity of Geico's spokeslizard, the BBC story helpfully included a photo of a naked gecko model posed suggestively against a wall. I'm not exactly a reptile aficionado, but I know a sexy lizard when I see one. I can't really fault those Russian scientists. Geckos are pretty hot.
Let's face it: If you sent iguanas or Gila monsters into space so you could spy on their sexual exploits, that would be obscene. But if you use the lithe, supple gecko or the suggestively named anole, it's totally understandable. In fact, I would go so far as to call it art. Only someone who has lost their passion for life wouldn't be moved by the sight of two geckos making sweet, tender love.
I know a lot of people these days say it's stupid to waste money on frivolous scientific experiments. In fact, even I, in the past, have used this very pulpit to add my voice to the chorus. But Russia's gecko experiment is anything but frivolous. If you can't imagine the myriad practical applications of knowing how geckos have sex in zero gravity, then you're not at all familiar with how the world of the 21st century works. It's all gecko sex these days.
I also know that three and a half years ago, after a rash of disturbing sex-related experiments on crickets, squid and fish, I used this column to call for a national scientist registry so we can keep track of the perverts responsible for sexually abusing small animals in the name of science. That has no bearing on the Russian gecko-sex satellite. This is a horse of a totally different color.
First of all, the scientists are Russian, so a national scientist registry wouldn't keep us safe from them to begin with. Second, if you think someone is a pervert just because they like to watch geckos getting it on, then you obviously have never seen geckos getting it on.
Do me a favor: Go watch some gecko porn online (yes, you can actually do it) and see what it's all about before you start casting stones. If you're still not convinced, then I just feel sorry for you.
Todd Hartley reminds you that 15 minutes could leave you with hairy palms. To read more or leave a comment, please visit zerobudget.net.