Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Not My Morula: Part Whatever of an Educational Series

So, when last we left our zygote - excuse me, not "our" zygote - yours maybe! I have no idea. Don't ask me whose zygote, I have no dog in that fight. Point is, it was a zygote. But it very quickly undergoes a startling metaphorphosis! The fused nucleus begins dividing, via a process called "cleavage":

Not My Morula

(not my cleavage)

So we see here, at first this looks pretty good for our pal the mitochondria. He's got a buddy! A big, googly-eyed buddy. But not so fast, this process is as alarming as it is inexorable:

Not My Morula 2

Told you. That mitochondria's not so sanguine about matters now is he! He's like, "oh shit it's the blob!" And he's not far off. Because look:

Not My Morula 3

This here is what is called a "morula." (but cf. the post title! ...and n.b. it while you're at it!)

There's a couple few things to point out at this stage:

1. All of the cell division thus far has been mitotic. That means I know the technical terms.

2. The cleavage at this point has all been just subdividing and subdividing - the actual dudeuole is still the same size! He hasn't gotten any bigger!

2.5 A female dudeuole would be called a dudetteicule.

3. That mitochondria's fine. Don't worry about him. He's in there someplace! It's a little cramped, maybe, but that's the worst of it.

...until the next stage unfolds...

Monday, April 26, 2010

More Children Who Are Not Mine

I just recently stopped suffering from a pestilence that had me red-eyed and wheezy and most of all, bad tempered.  So naturally, during this pestilence - which obviously had seeped into my brain cavity, rendering me completely insane - I thought it would be a good idea to go to WalMart to get some supplies of a nasal nature.   This is a bad idea most of the time, but certainly it's doubly so when you're a touch under the weather.  Because WalMart is a breeding ground of ex-fetus related hilarity. Cherubic wunderkind of all descriptions, crapping into their onesies, bashing toys off my shins and shrieking like their hearts might burst in every aisle as they seem to follow me around the store like tiny, snotty, uncoordinated zombies.

Now I'm sure if these angel babes belong to you, you can find an adorability (it is a word, now) factor in all of this, but the thing is, none of them are my babies.  In fact, as a person who would rather birth a tractor tire than a fleshy entity that I'm going to have to feed and hide my beer from for 18 years, I'm somewhat distressed by the presence of cute, red, swollen-faced teary tykes and instead of comforting them, I am imagining shoving an Ambien-laced popsicle in their noise orifice.

I told you.  Bad-tempered.

Now my pestilence has eased and normal service has resumed.  Now I just want to lock all toddlers in the closet under the stairs until they are old enough to leave home, or do some serious cleaning.

Phew!  Lucky I don't have any.

Monday, April 19, 2010

So: Headphones. Need Some Big Ol' Headphones. Suitable for Abdominal Placement!

I got to get me some big ol' headphones, to nestle onto either side of my belly. I will pump pure Mozart right in there.

Now, I know, I'm not having a baby, but I figure if Mozart can turn babies into virtuosos, maybe the same effect will hold true for other things.

I could have more musical poos?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Not My Zygote Pt.2

It's a boy!
Not My Zygote2

It's not my boy. I don't know whose boy it is.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Non Babies are Money Savers

It's amazing how much easier it is to be not having a baby, than the alternative.  I mean for a start, your favorite Levi's are always going to fit.  You're never going to have to bid your feet goodbye till you can see them again, unless of course, you suddenly find yourself stranded in a cupcake shop and have to eat your way out, in which case, I want your life!

Anyway, planning for your non baby is just so much less restricting than for an actual infant, that's all I'm saying.

For example, feeding a non baby is easy and cheap.  No special formulas (formulae?) with the correct vitamins and nutritional input are necessary, no strained veggies and zombie flesh colored purees, to boost the immune system in your little toothless wonder.  Having a non baby means freedom at the supermarket.  Because your non baby can eat anything.  Anything.  This facilitates things substantially.  Instead of expensive baby formulated tins of food, you can buy those 19 cent packets of noodles, like generic Ramen.  Or real Ramen if you're fancy and have 30 cents to spare.  Mmmmm MSG.  What non baby doesn't adore it?  You can feed a non baby anything you want frankly;  old cabbage, odor eaters, vodka - they'll never complain or even suffer for it.  In fact, you don't have to feed it at all!  I know, right?  Who wouldn't want that!

Also, added bonus, you can call it something like "Aloysius" without fear of bullying or ridicule.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Not My Zygote: Part 1 of An Educational Series

Here we see the zygote (not mine! I don't know whose this is):
Not My Zygote
The egg nucleus and the sperm nucleus (whose-ever it is) are only just beginning to fuse! What an exciting moment. With the exchange of DNA we see happening at this very instant, this little round dude now contains all the makings of a whole new human being, but it's not mine. Not my new human being! I had nothing to do with it. I don't even know who this woman is, I never saw her. Or not woman, I guess, but egg.

I don't mean to depersonalize the whole being of a human female down into a single one of her reproductive cells!

Still, take a look at what's going on here. Even though this is Not My Zygote, I'm pretty proud of the job I did drawing it. Over there to the right, that's a mitochondria. Technically I'm not sure that's accurate, but it's the only cell structure I can really draw properly and damn if I was going to leave it out! Does a woman's egg actually have mitochondrions in it? I'd say "probably." After all, they have to come from someplace, and there's no room in the sperm!

The little squiggly things and dots represent...little squiggly things and dots. The zygote - the very first stage of human development - is rife with these.

I guess I have to cop to the sperm vs. egg nucleus colors, though. Pink for egg, blue for sperm, on the nuclear membrane? When in fact, of course they're about the same color! It's pretty obvious all I'm doing here is needlessly perpetuating gender stereotypes. Right at the very moment of conception! Which will probably lead to needless confusion and anxiety on gender issues later (as the artificial imposition of societal constructs always does, upon a young mind). So yeah. I have to cop to that, I guess, but there's kind of an artistic issue too! One that I think is valid. Because if the whole THING was pink, picture how that would look?!


Artistically, even in the most scientific drawings, sometimes you need to break it up a little. Add a little variety into the color palette, to create visual interest. If you think half your blood vessels are really red and the other half are really blue, you're in for a surprise if you ever get cut open wide enough for a good look-see!

This has been Not My Zygote: Part 1 of An Educational Series.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Not My Early Pregnancy Symptoms

So lately my nipples have been really sensitive.

At least we know what it's not!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

I'm Pretty Sure I Can Prove That's Not My Baby.

But can we do it without the bloodwork? I hate bloodwork.

There should be a pee test for that.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Not My Etiquette

This past weekend, I was traipsing around the supermarket, lost in my own terribly important thoughts like, "Who cured the bacon and what was wrong with it to begin with?" and "I must find Cadbury Creme Egg goo, immediately, or hostages will have to be taken!" when my train of thought was rudely interrupted by some squalling little red-faced toothless thing, strapped ceremoniously to its male-human's chest like a fleshy, pink hell-parachute.

"She might need changing." its female human helpfully suggested and the man nodded in agreement, passed his cart to the female and took the screeching serpent child outside to the car to get a diaper status update.

No, that's what happened in my dreams.  What he actually did was unstrap that wailing banshee from his pectorals, gently laid it down on a rack in the bakery counter - a counter where they put bread and tasty, flaky baked goods - and then proceeded to undo the demon child's panty region and poke around for foreign matter as though he were indeed, checking the density of dough.

What the shit, guy?

When I don't have my baby I will never de-poop it in the supermarket; I will never take photos of its olive green liquid poop jamboree to share on Facebook;  I will never sniff its non diaper in a public place and make people who are browsing the impressive cake section, consider projectile vomiting into a cheesecake.

No, the baby I'm not having will be perfect.  A quiet, clean, non-pooping, non-vomiting, non-squalling, in fact non-existent, little ball of perfection.

That's the big advantage about not having a baby, it can be anything you damn well want.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Misgivings? Ambivalence? It's Kind of Hard to Say!

It's weird for me, because this was never a particular dream of mine, you know? It's not like it's a shock, it's not like I'm necessarily surprised or elated or even anything really. I never had a pre-set, pre-primed emotional response ready to deal with suddenly being in this situation. I mean, of course I'm happy! I guess I'm happy, it's certainly a blessing in so many ways! It's a beautiful thing, a natural thing.

So I would never say I'm taken aback, or upset by it. It's just that I had no preparation for it - not mentally. I was never dead-set for, against, or indifferent. But if you told me last year that a year from now I'd be right smack in the middle of not being about to have a kid, I'd have said well hey bud, how can you be so sure? Can you see into the future, are you psychic? Are you a prophet of God, and do speak with His authority? Or are you some sort of hypothetical creation of my future year-from-now self, telling me this now so that future me can make some point about his mental state upon receiving that kind of news?

I bet that'd shut you up - me saying that! Because I hate to break it to you, but it's not too polite to go around telling people what they're going to be doing a year from now, in these really delicate, personal areas. Maybe what if I told you that a year from now, you'd learn to mind your business, how would that news be received? Perhaps too subtle a point for a big prognosticator like you!

Anyway, I'll just say that I don't particularly appreciate having some dude lay out my future for me. There's a little thing called Free Will, that kind of sticks in my craw about that.

So anyway, like I'm saying, as you can see I was hit pretty much completely unprepared. But I hope I'm dealing about as well as most people, who find themselves in this same situation.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Gotta Re-Examine The Ol' Lifestyle Now, I Guess!

So it's only been a few days since this whole Baby Blog idea got rolling, but already I'm beginning to realize the huge impact a commitment like this is going to have on my life. How many things are there that I may have to look at now, that may have to be re-examined? Not being in the process of being about to have a baby, wow. It really throws your whole life into perspective. Somebody once used the word "epiphany"...that person was not far wrong.

I mean, even just take your everyday lifestyle things. And you might say, me being the man and all, I don't actually need to cut down on drinking alcohol, or eliminate cigarettes for instance. But maybe I should anyway, you know? I should at least think about it! Right?



Nah, I'm probably fine there. I think I'm good on the alcohol/tobacco front. Firearms, I'm kind of up in the air on. But since the government groups all three together, I'd say I'm probably good on all three.  

But those are just random examples. You could name off just about anything else, too, with equal validity. There's just so much that needs to be re-examined, that I've sort of taken for granted about my life, and almost all of those things are probably going to have to be either looked at or changed.

Most of them, probably I'm leaning toward the "looked at" side of that equation.

My Tuppence Worth

As Joe mentioned down below there, it's so exciting to be entering the blog world of not having a baby.  I can hardly contain myself.  And as he also pointed out, it's not his baby I'm not having, we wouldn't want people getting the wrong idea here.  We're both not having babies, respectively.  Isn't that a coincidence?

Anyway, while he is diplomatically giving intelligent accounts of non-pregnancy and its related matters, I will be mainly concentrating on pointing out the trials and dismays of babies in general, being semi offensive and griping about how I don't care about your baby's first words or steps or the first time he farted in the tub and how I certainly don't want to see your photos of your kid's junk.

See Joe is a nice person.  I am not.

Anyhoo, I look forward to pouring over websites and books on design deciding exactly how I want to not paint my nursery and figuring out if Baby Gap or something more upscale would be a better choice for not buying baby clothes for the baby I am not having.

It's all so exhilarating, this expedition into the murky waters of not having a lifeform spring forth from my Netherlands.

Here're some things I like hearing about:

Juicy gossip
What's happening on "Lost"

Here's some stuff I I don't give a bimble about:

Your baby
Your friend's baby
Stuff about eating or burying afterbirths

So, welcome!