The Washington Post

Long story short

ZZZZZ. It’s June, and I can’t be bothered much today. I lie here uncharacteristically relaxed, and getting up seems as hard as breathing must be for a giraffe. Did you ever wonder how giraffes breathe? Lie down and think about it with me here for a bit. Like watching summer clouds. Maybe we’ll see one that looks like a giraffe. It’s that long long neck, you see? How can breathing through that work? A giraffe’s lungs exhale and the used air goes up the neck and up and up and when it finally gets to the mouth, time to inhale again! And back comes all the used air into the lungs. See the problem here? Makes me tired just to think about it. Oxygen deprived.

Therefore giraffes may not be possible. A blow-hole out of the back would solve the problem. But there is no blow-hole. Obviously, there COULD be a blowhole, because whales figured that out. And it’s not an issue of rain getting in the blowhole, because whales deal with a lot more water than giraffes do, or would, if such a thing as giraffes could exist. Okay, daydreaming break is over.

Because, like much else, science can explain! I just looked it up! The answer turns out to be that the windpipe is relatively quite narrow, and the air moves at a very high velocity! So lots gets in and lots goes out, without lots piling up and going stale inside the neck. See how science is our friend? It explains things the way they are, not the way you would necessarily imagine them to be. Let’s continue to drum it out of our educational system.

***PAYWALL NEWS Yes, yes, it’s coming tomorrow, and no, I don’t know much about how it works, but I think you can still come see my stuff for free if you come in through my Facebook Fanpage I’m going to start putting up the links there for both my cartoons and my blog posts. You will have to decide for yourself what is worth your time and trouble, but this is, I think, the best I can do for you, and I guess I’m hoping it’s enough.

Tom Toles is the editorial cartoonist for The Post and writes the Tom Toles blog. See all of his cartoons here.


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