Sep 17, 2008


TOFINO, British Columbia – Some days, everything happens for a reason...

My twice-confirmed water taxi bails for a more juicy fare. Irritated, I wander into the bookstore for an espresso – and just happen to overhear kayak trips being reserved to Meares Island, precisely where I need to report.

She shoots! She scores!

So I paddle a silky, sweet boat on Browning Passage. And then, after surveying the ancient cedars, I wind up licking a slug ... because the guide Cody insists the slime anaesthetizes.

"My mother chewed one as a girl," a fellow traveler Byron cuts in. "Her tongue swelled up to five times its normal size."

Cody sighs. "I've never convinced a client to try it."

At this point, I pretty much have to ... choice has evaporated from the equation. The guide and I sift through the various slugs on the trail's duff. "Ooh, this one looks sticky," he volunteers, offering a black-and-chartreuse-spotted fatty.

I hold it on a leaf, then –on the count of three – brush my tongue across its back. "Again!" someone shouts, as flashes strobe. "One more time!"

After three licks, my tongue numbs slightly (placebo effect, no doubt), but I am no closer to the center of the Tootsie pop.

As a vegetarian, I skip the crunch.


  1. Oh, yuck!!!! Icky.

  2. Num num num: SLUGS! The new diet snack, so disgusting you won't bother eating...

  3. Slug-licking is the new toad-licking -- all the disgust with none of the enlightenment. Perfect for our current political climate.

  4. Washed down with liberal Kool-Aid, natch!