Monday, October 19, 2009

Jeremiah was a bullfrog

When I was a sophomore in high-school I had a biology class where we dissected a frog as an anatomy lesson. Whereas a lot of biology classes have freshly killed frogs, ours had ones that were kept in formaldehyde. Because of this— the frogs had rigor mortise and were stuck in one particular position. Ours had the fortunate/unfortunate position of having one of its front legs folded in front of its body instead of off to the side.

This was unfortunate, because we had to work around that folded arm any time we had to access the body. It made it particularly difficult to open up the belly and see what it recently ate. I don't think that my lab partner and I put two and two together and saw how fortunate we were until we snipped the frog's jaw and rolled out the tongue.

One of the exercises in class was to roll out the tongue to see how long it is. In order to do this, you had to snip the two sides of the jaw so that the jaw can be flipped down and the tongue rolled out. I don't know at what point we noticed that the hanging tongue reminded us of a Rolling Stones album cover— or that the folded arm may have been in that position for a reason. It was after this point that we never looked at our frog the same way again.

We fashioned an electric guitar out of paper and slipped it under the folded arm. We affectionately named it Jeremiah and sang Joy To the World to ourselves every time we got the frog out. I do not think that we had the forethought to take pictures— who could when you are keeping one eye on the teacher so that you don't get caught goofing off. Our frog was a rock-star and we liked it that way.


Liz Mays said...

That is so funny that you did that!

I remember those dissecting days and the smell was atrocious! I never did any of the actual cutting or dissecting. I took the notes.

Unknown said...

To bad about the pictures. I bet that would have been so funny to see. I am trying to picture the whole frog image.

Denise @ Sunflowers, Chocolate and Little Boys said...

I wish I had had that much fun dissecting frogs in Biology. Mine was just a boring old frog. And I wish you did have a picture of that frog!

Anonymous said...

That's awesome. That frog had a new lease on life. Imagine starting your rock'n'roll music career post-mortem. It's pretty impressive.

Last year #2 dissected rats in 7th grade science. I came and helped for 3 days. It was so cool. I appreciated it much more as an adult than I ever did as a kid.

Cajoh said...

@blueviolet: I guess I got used to the smell… especially since my mother brought an Alley Cat home from her class and placed it on my top bunk in my bedroom— thanks mom.

@KIKI & Denise: Unfortunately I did not even own a camera at the time. I do not think it would be wise to steal my parent's 35mm camera just to take a picture of a frog in biology class.

@Mina: Wow— rats… how cool is that. I guess they should look out for the Alley Cat.

KarieK said...

I wish I had your lab partner. Mine was too busy puking from the smell of formaldehyde. We too had the stationary frogs which made the experiment all the more awful with that smell.

Although I have to say chemistry was a LOT more fun than least until we got to the pig.

Captain Dumbass said...

If only we'd had cell phones with cameras back in the day. On second thought, maybe the lack of evidence is better.

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