January 3, 2009

never eat a 'cuda

once upon a time there was a girl, and this girl went on a trip to cozumel for winter break. while on this trip she decided to go fishing in the tropical waters. however this type of fishing meant more of watching the boat hands cast all the lines and just sitting and watching. except for once. it seemed the girl and her friends caught something. so they reeled in the the fish. it was the only fish they caught.

the fish was ugly and long. it was also slimy. however, at the time the girl and her friends did not know how slimy this fish was. the fish was a barracuda. a fish, the girl and her friends thought was not edible. but after being convinced by the spanish speaking captain the fish was indeed edible they took the fish home for a feast.

the eating of this devil barracuda is not of much importance except that it was in fact eaten.

a few hours passed and toilets went from vacant to occupied. they were lucky the house they were staying in had as many bathrooms as people who had dined on the devil 'cuda. hours passed and the toilets remained occupied. it was at approximately 4:00 am when it was realized by the girl and the house that they were going to need further assistance for what they thought was dehydration from food poisoning.

so it was off to el hospital for them. there were no street names on any of the alto signs so the travel was confusing. it was made harder when they arrived at a hospital and were told it was a private hospital and needed to find a public one. they stumbled back to the car in search of a public hospital.

15 minutes later they found a public hospital. everyone but the girl got 3 bags of saline solution. the girl was kicked out of the hospital room and told she was "healthy" enough to sit in the waiting room.

it was then that they f0und out it was not in fact food poisoning but rather ciguatera:
"...a foodborne poisoning in humans caused by eating marine species whose flesh is contaminated with a toxin known as cinguatoxin, which is present in many microorganisms living in tropical waters. Like many naturally and artificially occurring toxins, ciguatoxin bioaccumulates in lower-level organisms, resulting in higher concentration of the toxin at higher levels of the food chain. Species near the top of the food chain in tropical waters, such as barracudas..." (source: wiki)

side effects for the girl and the others may include: "...gastrointestinal symptoms include nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea usually followed by neurological symptoms such as headaches, muscle aches, paresthesia, numbness, ataxia, and hallcuinations. Severe cases of ciguatera can also result in cold allodynia, which is a burning sensation on contact with cold..." (source: wiki)

let's just say the girl and the others have a severe case.

now lets enjoy a pre-poisoned devil 'cuda shot:




the end.


9 comments:

Jonathan said...

Ooh, ciguatoxin! It it a depolarizing neurotoxin which lowers the threshold of activation of sodium channels. Once open, the Na+ channels can't inactivate or close. Because sodium channels are so widespread in the body, it causes the wide-ranging effects you all had. At least it only affects the PNS, or it could have been worse (death and such). (Sorry you had to be a case study in my memory, but at least you know all the geeky details you never would have otherwise cared about!) By the way,I feel very nerdy for writing all that down. Hope the rest of the trip went well, and I hope you are having fun in San Fransisco!

tor said...

help my sodium channels! help my sodium channels! they are too exposed!

Farrah said...

if this girl was at my hospital, I wouldn't send her to the waiting room. I would take her to the resident lounge to drink a Fanta and rehydrate.

w.weston said...

can't believe you touched that thing. it doesn't look half as dead as it should for you to be holding it.

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