Thursday, March 5, 2009
All across the world, the outlandishly rare Pentagon Fish is considered bad luck. It's almost never seen, but when it is, bad things happen. Off the coast of Jamaica in 2007, Serge MacGillicuddy, a local fisherman, caught a Pentagon Fish in the local waters and brought it ashore to show to his friends. A small asteroid fell from the sky and crushed them. In 1997 in the waters east of Salvador, Brazil, a tourist spotted a dead Pentagon Fish washed ashore on the beach; he had a heart attack and died seconds later. In 1993 Ivory Coast, a local beachcomber spotted a Pentagon Fish thrashing in the water; he was run over by a Piano Truck just minutes later. In 1986, an aquarium in Boston attempted to import a Pentagon Fish caught off the coast of Australia; the plane carrying the fish crashed at Logan Airport, killing three hundred people and destroying a homeless shelter. This consistent record of horrible Pentagon Fish related disasters goes back through recorded history: a Pentagon Fish was exhibited at the Alexandria Library before it burned down, a child found one of the strange fishes and ran through the town showing it to the villagers of Pompeii shortly before Mount Vesuvius erupted. There are even ancient reports of an entire school of Pentagon fishes living in the area around the ancient city of Atlantis before it disappeared into the ocean. The cases are so consistent and so frightening that most scientists, despite on the record denials and scoffing, are unwilling to study it. In 2008, the Alfred P. Long Foundation offered a grant of $20 million to any scientist who would publicly commit to studying the sea creature; no one stepped forward, and the money is unclaimed to this day.