Two of my favourite things — giant squid and the writing of Mark Dery — came together recently (or as Steve put it, “you like Mark Dery and everybody likes giant squid”). In this long but worthy read on Boing Boing, Dery contemplates the history, anatomy and environmental portent of the increasingly intimate relationship between humanity and crazy giant squid:

Bleached white by its preservative bath, the tentacle feels hard yet rubbery to the touch, like an overinflated bicycle tire—a bicycle tire studded with suckers the size of quarters, on stalks. Running my thumb around the inside of one, I feel the sawtoothed ring of chitin that gives the creature its fearsome grip. In life, its suckers leave proof of the fabled beast’s existence: ring-shaped scars on the hide of its archnemesis, the Sperm whale. A photo in a 1917 Smithsonian publication bears the poetic caption, “a piece of Sperm whale skin relating a battle with a giant squid, in sucker scar script.”

The Kraken Wakes: What Architeuthis Is Trying to Tell Us