Dear Giant Squid,
Ok, what are the Giant Squid's senses? Because when I search it, you're the only thing that comes up.
A Student in Sausalito
Thank you for bringing this matter to my attention. First, I am flattered that the vast aviary in the Google Engine Rooms has finally chosen to highlight my distinctive attributes for advising in this matter, and look forward to the day when my advice is more broadly sought (as, at this time, I am mostly asked to address romantic conundra and answer elementary questions regarding my own physique).
Like most sentient beings, I possess five primary senses, two lesser senses, and lack three senses — for a total of either ten or four senses, depending upon whether one's method of accounting is modulus or signed.
THE MAJOR SENSES OF WHICH I POSSES
- First, and foremost, I am possessed of two optically perfect eyes, lending me an incisive and staggering sense of sight, oft noted in the shipping news and capstan sea chanties of the late 19th Century. Philosopher and Delta blues guitarman Dr. Robert Johnson once opined in ribald verse that I could "See a nun's knickers while reposin' on the far side of da' moon!" — clearly hyperbole, as a nun's unmentionables are nigh impossible to discern at any distance, since the blessed brides — much like Sir Dr. Johnson himself — favor of the G- and C-strings.
- Secondly, I have a fine and subtle sense of taste, and can easily discern among sweet, salty, bitter, sour, umami, and whether a specific davenport will make the sitting room appear too gaudy.
- I am similarly possessed of a corresponding sense of decorum, which has consistently prevented me from, for example, screaming too loudly at a lax waiter or drowning a man in fermenting pig offal without first securing the appropriate license and warrant.
- I am much noted for my highly refined sense of humour. Although I dislike to brag, in my youth I was a four-time semi-finalist in the R'lyeh Competition of Humourists. On two of those occasions I won special commendations for my capacity to detect black bile while in the presence of phlegm, which is quite more difficult than one might first imagine, owing to the dominant phlegmatic ambiance.
- Finally, I have a a tolerable-well sense of hearing, and the associated skill of hearding, although current regulations prevent me from practicing my craft.
THE MINOR SENSES OF WHICH I POSSES
- Although easily overlooked, I have been blessed with a markedly subdued sense of pride. In my quiet moments, I fear that this sense may perhaps even be somewhat underdeveloped, and have considered acquiring an appropriate prosthesis to counterbalance this deficiency. sigh.
- Also, I embody a certain subtle sense of je ne sais qua the less of which is spoken, the better.
THE SENSES OF WHICH I LACK
- It has been noted — mostly by my human employees — that I appear to lack all sense of human decency. I counter that human decency is so rare in the environment — perhaps as little as a single part-per-billion — that my sense of it may be as acute as my senses of taste and humor, but there is simply too little human decency present to be worthy of note. My personnel have, generally if grudgingly, conceded this point.
- Conversely, it is the case that I am blessedly spared a sense of pity. Like a blind Brahman priest in a slaughterhouse, I feel fortunate to be unable to sense what might otherwise drive me mad in its nauseatingly offensive omnipresence.
- On a related note, I smell not, and also am possessed of no smell — a logical equality I believe is known as chiasmus. I remind our younger democratic republicans to recall, as we enter this Season of the Electioneers, to ask now what they might smell of their country, but what their country might smell of them.
- Tragically, I have discovered over the countless years that I have much degraded my sense of touch. Like a limp and viagravated male member, there is a general dullness to all to which I lay tentacle that robs the world of its tactile color. As a one-time touch typist and safe-cracker, this does sadden me, especially in this febrile Season of Love.
Frequent readers may note that I have not written upon the origins or prosecution of Saint Valentino's Day, despite its contemporaneous occurrence. I feel that I have substantially addressed this Holy Day in past columns; should there be some future development in the mandated "spontaneous" exchange of severed plant genitals, sexual acts, and goat-entrail-whippings led by wolf-masked never-do-well males, I shall comment upon them at that time.
In the Meanwhile I Remain, In Most Senses of the Word,
Your Giant Squid