Science from the Sea!

For months, scientists have been scrambling to develop a vaccine for the novel coronavirus that has raged across the country and the planet.

“We’ve been scrambling to develop a vaccine for the novel coronavirus,” said Dr. Joy Martin, a senior fellow at the National Institute for Virological Research, “that has raged across the country and the planet.”

They have been using all methods, from the most established traditional to the most cutting-edge: dead-strain techniques, synthetic antigen protocols, even the experimental approach known as “slam-one-door-and-another-door-creaks.”

“We’ve been using all methods,” Dr. Martin said, “from the most…” She trailed off. “Are you just going to take my quotes, use them to fashion paragraphs that say the exact same thing, word for word, and run them above my quote so I sound like I’m just mimicking what you’re saying? That kind of thing has happened to me before with your newspaper, and I didn’t appreciate it. In fact, I’d like you to run an identical paragraph under a quote, just for good faith.”

That kind of thing had happened to her before, and she didn’t appreciate it.


“Thank you,” said Dr. Martin. “But that’s not the point. The point is that while we hav been looking in labs, we should have been looking elsewhere, among the waves.”

Dr. Martin took out a pair of binoculars and pointed eastward from the windows of her lab. “The Atlantic Ocean,” she said. “A liquid world that teems with life, including Jimson’s Dolphin, one of the rarest species known to us. And brilliant: when a Jimson’s Dolphin was caught in 1906, it already understood Einstein’s theory of relativity.”

The reason for her digression was that a Jimson’s Dolphin had not been caught this year. Instead, it had started leaving coded notes taped with seaweed to the outer shell of a research facility near Aynsley Island. When decoded, they seemed to suggest that the dolphin — who signed his notes “Jonathan Oldstyle” — had developed a vaccine for the coronavirus.

“This Jonathan Oldstyle, whoever he is,” said Dr. Martin, “told us that by using ingredients found in the sea, he could bring a vaccine to market. He didn’t specify the exact ingredients, but it had something to do with the nasal cartilage of a shark, the central stinging cells of a certain kind of jellyfish, and photoluminescence plants.”


The Weekly World News immediately set out to verify Dr. Martin’s claims. After six weeks of investigative work, our reporters managed to locate a Jimson’s Dolphin. “I’m not Jonathan Oldstyle,” said the dolphin., “I’ve heard of one who uses that name, but I like to keep it simple. You can call me Bill.” 

Bill became a kind of undercover agent for WWN, swimming among the schools of Jimson’s and asking questions.

“I have a scoop,” he said one afternoon. He did, but the news was disappointing. “I think I’ve found your Jonathan Oldstyle. It’s this one older dolphin who is known to use similar names, though he won’t admit to that one. The bad news is that he’s a bit of a crank. He believes in that 5G nonsense. On the other hand, he has several advanced degrees in microbiology.”

The next week brought even more distressing news.

“He says that he did leave a note, but that it was about reinfection rates, and didn’t say anything about a vaccine,” said Bill. “It’s possible that your Dr. Martin is trying to gin up interest in her own work by attributing it to a Jimson’s. It’s happened before. Have you ever heard of a JetSKi?”


Dr. Martin, led away in cuffs, insisted that her vaccine had shown promise in test subjects. “My vaccine has shown promise in test subjects,” she said.

She had injected them unwittingly, as they slept. “I injected them unwittingly, as they slept,” she said.

If convicted, she will be sentenced to a minimum of eleven years in prison.


“Eleven years?” Bill laughed. “That’s a blink of an eye, even though we don’t really blink. We have a Harderian gland that constantly bathes the eye in an oily mucous. We also live to be about four thousand years old. That’s why we’re so smart. And I have a team working on your vaccine. It looks like Martin may have been onto something. The central stinging cells we’ve harvested from a Dunbar Jellyfish are proving to be interestingly effective at blocking cellular receptivity, even at high viral load levels.”

Jonathan Oldstyle was not invited to join the research team.

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