DID THE INVENTORS STEAL THEM FROM NATURE?
Scientists discovered a new species of life in the lower levels of the earth’s soil—and they may look familiar!
The team of scientists from Pointmere University in Australia found the creatures, no larger than a pinpoint, in the deepest reaches of soil, more than 40 meters (140 feet) below sea level.
“At first, I thought I was looking at grains of sand,” said soil ecologist Amber Jensen. “But when we got them under a magnifying lens, I was stunned. The beings looked exactly like emojis.”
Jensen called over colleagues, and they confirmed her suspicions. The animals were indistinguishable from the small digital icons used to express emotions in social media or other computer-based environments.
“The more of them we looked at, the more we saw,” said Jensen. “I saw smiley faces, frowny faces, tongues-stuck-out faces, woozy face, sneezy face, vomiting face, cowboy hat face, sleeping face, even face with tears of joy.”
SHADY DEALINGS BY KANAWA?
After months of soil excavation and inspection, the team managed to find all five hundred and fifty face emojis under the Australian soil. Notably, no other emojis were found: no cars, no animals, no houses, not even the highly popular small pile of feces.
The discovery has stunned and puzzled the computer industry. “Look,” said Kei Kanawa, part of the Japanese mobile phone team that launched the first digital emoji in 1997. “We thought of them ourselves. I swear.”
And yet, suspicions have arisen. Frank Gershon, an investigative journalist working out of Hong Kong, has unearthed phone records that place Kanawa in Australia in the summer of 1996, and a deep dive into forensic accounting has suggested that he purchased at least two shovels while on vacation.
“Ridiculous,” said Kanawa. “I ate at a restaurant called Shovel. It’s a seafood place, mostly oysters. Why would I buy a shovel?”
Kanawa’s ex-girlfriend, Yasmin, confirmed that the pair ate at Shovel. But she also cast doubt on Kanawa’s character. “Not everything Kei says is true,” she said.
SCIENCE PRESSES ON
The Pointer team has continued to dig, unsure of what they may find next. Jensen, out in the field, was not available for a follow-up interview, but she did respond via email. “There can be no disputing the ubiquitous presence of emojis in our world,” wrote Jensen. “We think we have opened a window into their origins, but we are not sure what the nature of the breeze is that’s blowing through. But that’s the thing about science. It always surprises you.”
She ended her message with a winky face emoji.