Imagine the Horror!
Ever step outside on a damp evening and have to hurdle large oozing fleshy slugs as if they were landmines? Do you get the willies imagining stepping on one of these living boogers bare-footed? Do you get demented pleasure from pouring salt on these critters and watching them shrivel into a puddle of mucous? Well, yes, and don’t we all? Imagine the vast differences this planet would experience if evolution played a nasty trick, enabling
Slugs That Fly! It’s a horrifying thought, isn’t it? You would no longer look down for the mucous covered meat worms, but look toward the sky! These flittering membranal mollusks would descend blindly through the night, enveloping their slimy bodies in your hair, splatting against your skin, or even slipping down the backs of your shirts! And if you think flying slugs can mess up an evening stroll in the park, read on and see what other major impacts would have occurred on this world but for a simple twist of genetics that kept slugs land-borne.
Vital Statistics of the Adult Flying Slug:
- Four to six inches in length
- Covered in acidic digestive mucous membrane
- Hermaphroditic, all slugs are both male and female, and always pregnant.
- Omnivorous, they eat both animal and vegetative matter. Likes to eat garbage and waste.
- Wings made of flattened membrane, like a bat, wingspan up to eight inches.
- Still horribly slow on ground, slugs achieve airspeeds of upwards of 12 knots.
How flying slugs would alter our planet: Religion
- India would worship the slug as a deity. In New Delhi, on every corner, is a hamburger stand that must close at dusk to keep the slugs out of the meat.
- Bats would not be feared, even though the typical specimen of its kind is up to three times the size of our own (due to a natural diet of flying slugs). Bats are favored pets in homes across America.
- Voodoo rituals would consist of the worship of slugs.
- Demons from the bible would not be bat-like, but slug like. Satan would be depicted as having giant eyestalks.
- Beer was never invented for its purposes in our world. Beer notoriously attracts slugs, and as such, is used in black magic rituals and Satan worship.
- Aboriginal cultures from around the world would greatly revere the slug. Early cave paintings would depict large swarms of slugs as a source of food.
- Ancient Druids would have attempted to become one with the slug.
- Ireland would be slug-free, and as such, a greatly populated World Power, because St. Patrick would have driven the slugs out of the country.
- A runny nose would have warranted the death sentence during the Salem Witch Trials on the supposition that a slug or a spawn of Satan had possessed its victim. Whenever someone sniffles today, people say “God bless you.” Sneezes are largely ignored, much like yawns.
- Salt would be commonly traded around the world as money.
- Brave window washers on high rises, scraping layers upon layers of slime off of glass due to slug impacts, would be highly paid professionals. Window washer schools would be more commonplace than community colleges.
- Pest control would be a specialized field. Slug killers would be revered. Beekeepers are considered eccentric yet necessary.
- Flight was never achieved. The last known attempt at powered flight was the deaths of Orville and Wilbur Wright who crashed after coating their plane’s wings with synthetic slug mucous.
- Space flight was achieved. The Moon is actively colonized because slugs don’t like 1/6th gravity.
- Space Stations circle the globe. This is where the sciences are pursued and studied, and plus, no slugs in space.
- No one ever had to invent the fly swatter. The slug slinger is the #1 product in everyone’s home. Spray salt is #2.
- The automobile never really caught on. It was too dangerous to drive above ground with the huge spatters across the windshield. NASCAR never became a sporting event.
- High Speed subterranean trains would be the primary form of international land transportation, Ocean Liners would still be popular over sea.
- Because there were no world wars, (The Germans would be a peace loving fishing society), microchip technology arrived much earlier. Computers kick ass, but a slug’s mucous can easily damage a system.
- Because most inland areas are too inhospitable for human life (armored bees, giant spiders, birds, and slugs), wheat was never really cultivated. Kelp beds and fish are the main staple of human diets.
- California was deliberately sunken into the ocean to make a large salt water bay to grow kelp.
- With no cotton or wool (sheep are armor plated), clothing consists of leather.
- Beef ranches in the desert southwest of the US provide food and clothing for many people. However, cows are hard to slaughter due to the toughness of their armored hides. Dynamite is a popular slaughtering technique. Slug mucous is used to naturally soften the hides for curing and manufacture in the clothing mills.
- Because slugs are so destructive to plant life, many types of plants evolved to defend against them. All large trees have spiny bark. Many flora are salty or thorny. Tobacco is grown and is used as poison against slugs.
- Except for glass, there would be no smooth surfaces on any architectural building. Sharp edges and granulated finishes would deter slugs from nesting on the sides of buildings.
- As much as possible, people would eat in underground restaurants. “Dining ‘al fresco’” is a term used to imply insanity in someone.
- Deep beer wells are installed in every aboveground courtyard to attract and trap slugs.
- Football stadiums are all indoors.
- Cities would be built the world over, floating on salty Ocean water. Salt Lake City would be the capital of the United States.
- Deserts are also prime real estate in which to build cities. The Saharan Belt States of Africa are a World leader.
- Due to an abundance of slugs, and because they fly, bats are plentiful and more than triple their average size.
- Pigeons are meat eaters. They are more than four times the current size and they stab slugs right out of the sky. Because of their preternatural desire to roost on statues, coupled with their enormous size, many cultures do not erect statues. They carve simple plaques instead. But the pigeons still walk funny.
- Small birds only exist in very high altitudes where there are no slugs. The slugs have eaten all of the smaller species.
- Ducks are saw-tooth billed and have scoop talons.
- Eagles are twice their normal size and can eat pigeons for breakfast. They are still close to extinction because people like the pigeons to be around to eat the slugs.
- Most land based mammals, including dogs, cats and cows have evolved with thick shell-like hides, much like the armadillo, to deter the acidity of the slug’s digestive mucous.
- Honey bees evolved with a thick top barbed shell. The common housefly is very rare. Slugs eat their young maggots and many larvae of other insects. Ants still rule the underworld.
- Other insects became large and specialized. The praying mantis is nearly two feet tall and dines exclusively on slugs, but has been known to injure young children.
- Spiders are equally huge and much more venomous. Their webs are thick and large to snare and dine on slugs.
- The Taming of the Slug is required reading in High School.
- Ditto for Catcher in the Kelp.
- The Old Man and the Slug is about a man that gets dragged into a forest by a giant slug.
- The Slugs of Wrath is about being evicted from dustbowl Oklahoma and forced to live in a California forest.
- Monster movies would pertain to “living off the land” either forcefully or as part of an adventure.
- The popular teenage music would be called “Slug and Snot”
- Fringe groups would keep and attempt to train slugs as pets.
- Hippies are “back to nature” folks that wander off into the deep country and are never heard from again.
- The distillation of slug mucous would be illegal due to its toxicology and drug effect. TV ads would warn against sniffing slug snot.
Biological Evolutionary Timeline of the Flying Slug
- 400 million years ago: The first sea mollusk crawled onto land and began using its newly formed lungs. The slug is born.
- 385 million years ago: While dining on vegetation, the slug ingests the now extinct insect, the pilantis, a very small wingless plant eating bug.
- Slugs soon begin to devour these insects by the billions. Slugs multiply greatly, the pilantis population begins to shrink. Slugs are now omnivorous.
- 300 million years ago: A genetic mutation allows the pilantis to use its wing nubs for flight. The pilantis begins to flee the scourge of the slug.
- 295 million years ago: The slug learns to coil its soft body to leap at the fleeing pilantis insects. Developing ground birds develop a taste for slugs.
- 240 million years ago: The slug develops toxic mucous to deter predator birds. Slugs begin to flatten their bodies to assist in their leaping at the pilantis insects.
- 200 million years ago: The slug achieves short bursts of flight. Other species of slug begin to develop specialized abilities pertaining to flight. The pilantis is hunted to extenction.
- 195 million years ago: The slug is forced to turn to other insectia for food. Many species are hunted by the slug.
- 100 million years ago: Man appears, forced to keep to caves due to infestations of flying slugs. Slugs have full flight and have hunted all smaller flying birds to extinction. Flying mammals and large predatory birds rule the skies.
- 20 million years ago: There are over three hundred specialized flying slug species. Man uses salt water as a weapon. Seaside civilization develops. Salt is actively mined as a commodity.
- 150 thousand years ago: The first city appears. The hose is invented and land irrigated and destroyed by salt water.
- 60 thousand years ago: The first ships are built. Man becomes a seafaring race.
- 10 thousand years ago: Slugs are actively marked for extinction by mankind. Technology began to develop swiftly in man’s crusade against the slug.
Specialized Species Some slugs would have developed strange specializations, the strangest of which, of course developed on the continent of Australia.
|Puffer Slug||India, Southeast Asia||The puffer slug is capable of swallowing huge amounts of air, and using its body as a bladder, is able to float like a balloon on wind currents, using its small wing nubs as rudders.|
|Cartwheel Slug||Australia||The cartwheel slug can stretch its body into a foil to catch the wind and tumbles or cartwheels along four pseudo pods for fast ground movement in arid climes.|
|Fireslug||United States Hawaiian Territory||Native to the volcanic islands of the Hawaiian chain, this slug is the world’s most toxic mollusk. If it lands on the bare skin, a human will absorb the mucous and die of paralysis within three minutes.|
|Gestalt Slugs||Andes Mountains, Chile||These small black slugs are known to congregate into clusters and meld or “gestalt” into a single-minded organism. As a cluster these slugs can form a wingspan of 7 meters in order to hunt giant condors or mountain goats.|
|Spitting Slug||Australia||These insidious slugs use their acidic, poisonous mucous as a weapon. They can spit their mucous up to three meters with pinpoint accuracy. Their primary prey are lizards and beetles.|
|Bullet Slugs||Mississippi Basin, United States||The bullet slugs have evolved with a spined, hard shell helmet that surround their eyestalks and oral orifices. They are known to dive upon their victims, able to use their hard shell to pierce the hides of cattle, deer and the occasional bison. Once the hides are pierced, these slugs vacate their helmets and begin to devour their victim from within. Once they eat their fill, they ooze out of the festering wound and in two days, a new helmet forms to replace their discarded ones.|
|Buzzing Slugs||Amazon Slime Forest, South America||These slugs get their name from the sound their gastropods produce when they devour their food. Usually flying in swarms, these slugs have been known to skeletonize a cow within 5 minutes. When an entire swarm eats a cow, the buzzing may be heard up to a mile away.|
|Dung Slugs||Arabian Peninsula||These slugs rarely pose a threat to humans. Their primary diet are the dung left by the large animals in the area. They descend upon a dung heap, roll the dung into little balls, and fly the dung balls back to a common nest to feed their young. On rare occasions, they will drop their payload by accident upon unsuspecting victims.|