Senior Editor
Staff

The Inertia

When I was young, I took a SCUBA diving course. I was 11 or 12 years old, I think, and very excited. After a happy few afternoons flopping around in a pool blowing ropes of snot into my mask and watching my older brother panic at the bottom of the deep end, it was time to actually go in the ocean. Oh, what wonders awaited us! I have a vague recollection that I was reading Journey to the Center of the Earth at the time and had visions of sea monsters that inhabited that subterranean ocean. I never saw them, of course, because they don’t exist, but on that very first day diving off Ogden Point, something happened that scarred me forever. It shouldn’t have, but I was 11 or 12 years old, and you know how that is.

After about 15 minutes of rapidly floating up and sinking down while trying frantically to control my BCD, there, just a few feet in front of my foggy, snot-filled mask, was a jellyfish. It was a jellyfish of stupidly big proportions. Now, all these years later, I may have built this up in my head, but I swear to you on all things holy, this jellyfish had to have been 12 feet across. Its translucent tentacles stretched down into the deep waving on the current like palm fronds in a warm breeze. Its body, a disgusting mass of clearish-purple yellows, looked like the snot in my mask had come to life. It was, to this day, the most disgusting thing I’ve ever seen. But at the same time, I was fascinated by it. Humans are weird.

These days, of course, I spend quite a bit of time swimming around in the ocean, either attempting to slide on a silly piece of foam or trying to stick a sharp bit of metal into a fish, but still in the back of my head is that damn jellyfish. It bobs just out of view every time I put my face underwater, lurking there like an enormous under-poached egg. And I hate it. All that is to say that there are some supremely weird and disgusting things in the ocean, like the weird, clear bubble that a team of divers found off the Norwegian coast.

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The divers, Ronald Raasch, Nils Baadness, and Brynjar Aarnseth, were on their way back to shore after exploring a sunken World War II vessel. While swimming a little more than 50-feet down, they spotted the hovering bubble. On closer inspection, they found that it was filled with hundreds of thousands of squirming creatures. They do not, like I would have been, appear disgusted in the slightest.

“At first I thought it was a giant jellyfish, but when we came a bit closer, we saw that this was [like] nothing else we had seen before,” Baadness told The Dodo. “It was amazing.”

As it turns out, the bubble was a giant squid egg, which, as you can imagine, are a real rarity to find in nature. “To see it in person was a once-in-a-lifetime moment,” Baadness said.

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