Slug

Apotheosis of all that is low, vile, vagrant, whose taste for midnight gardens is notorious, hermaphrodite whose weakness for warm beer can lead to a fatal love-match with his own reflection: how to dress him up, this poor relation to that clan of seafaring and treeclimbing gastropods so tantalizing to the French palate? The stubborn pride with which the slug unrolls his tatterdemalion carpet is inexplicable. He lacks the most basic accoutrements of a decent mollusk lifestyle: no mother-of-pearl dressing room, no spiral staircase, no simple-yet-elegant home to inspire the likes of Le Corbusier. Nothing, in short, to bequeath to a museum bell jar.

Clearly, all attempts at rehabilitation fail to lift the slug above his freakish role as dead ringer for a hitchhiker’s thumb, and come up against the stubborn delusion that he was once the understudy to some obscure artist, measuring for a comprehensive sketch of the face of a salt-free earth.

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