Graham, L. et al.
I demand an explanation. I cannot understand why a famous scientist who has numerous publications, tenure at a prestigious university, and a very snazzy lab coat, would purposefully try to sabotage the life of a lowly research animal by genetically engineering an embarrassing growth on my anal gland. I am begging you, please cut out the tumor and tell me why you did this.
At first when I got to your lab, the older rats explained to us pups that we were a special type of science rodent, and I was so excited! They told us about all the cool drugs and mazes they did, and I couldn’t wait to run around, blasted on ketamine, and get rewarded with cheese. Little did I know what horrors you had genetically spliced into me.
I first felt the tumor as I was giving myself a thorough wash after dinner, but figured it was just a hemorrhoid from the taco bell crumbs I found in a student’s sleeve (while she should be more careful, you should give your students more time to eat), so I waited it out. You first noticed it a few days later, after it had grown ten-fold, and to my surprise celebrated its appearance by high-fiving a student. You even named it “Gary.” You fawned over Gary for hours, but I was still just Specimen 433-Z. Despite your strange behaviour towards something so clearly negative, I reassured myself that as a doctor, you had my best intentions at heart and would remove the tumor at the earliest opportunity.
But it kept growing.
Gradually, the obstruction made my once rotund droppings come out like thin chocolate churros, and I was teased mercilessly by the other lab rats. The awkward placement of the tumor also increased my maze time by several hours. And there was no ketamine! I labored through each step, which your tiniest student jotted down in her notebook. Despite my agony, I thought to myself, great! They have finally noticed what a hindrance this is on my quality of life and will surely begin plans to snip it off.
But it kept growing.
Eventually the tumor blocked so much of my sphincter that when I passed gas, the sound released was so high pitched that it ruptured my eardrums. While I mourned the loss of communicating with my peers, I must admit it was nice not being able to hear them call me “Anal Bead”. I prayed each night for an animal surgeon.
Then one day, you brought in a special anesthesiologist, laid me on my back in a metal tray and pointed some white hot lights at my nether regions. My prayers had been answered! As I was drifting off, I heard you say “life’s gonna change for you, lil buddy” and I was comforted that you would finally rid me of this monstrosity. But when I awoke inside my cage later, “Gary” was still there.
I will never live down the humiliation I felt one month later when you showed me that my anus made the cover of The Journal of Modified Genetics, my face entirely out of frame and the tumor front and center with the title “Geneticist Creates Largest Known Anal Mass Using Gene Modification, Could This Disrupt The Butt Implant Industry?”
That’s when I finally put it together that this monstrosity had been your plan all along. And oh, were you ever proud of how big it had gotten! Your students quoted the paper ad nauseum.
“Scientist to the stars discovers promising alternative to surgical enhancements,” gushed your tiniest student.
“Genes that help you fill out your jeans,” exclaimed the one that only eats loose tuna on sliced tomatoes.
“Specimen 433-Z may just be the thickest rat in the world,” said your only cool student.
Dr. Gibson, you succeeded in your quest, but did you ever once think of the “specimen”?
You have ignored my desperate squeaks for the last time. If you do not remove the mass and explain yourself in the next 24 hours, I am filling a formal complaint and requesting an immediate transfer to Dr. Lee’s lab to begin my career in “microdosing.”