Thursday, July 1, 2010

tokyo parasites

The small but well-appointed Museum of Parasitology in Tokyo's Meguro neighborhood is a good excuse to get out of the rain and to contemplate just how lucky you are compared to the poor dolphin whose brains exploded into a mass of wriggling worms and are now on display to the public, or the poor bird who seems to be infested with no fewer than 10 different types of feasting beasties, or the guy whose testicles seem to have been the size of a small child.

It's a great place for people-watching, particularly for seeing culturally-specific expressions of people being totally skeeved-out by things in jars. It also got me thinking in all sorts of ways about the ways that people parasitize cities, how similar some organisms become to bento boxes for others, and how to visually describe something so sinister as having one's body devoured from the inside out in a way that makes it seem perfectly natural and fairly innocuous. It really puts things in perspective, I tell you.

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