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What's long and hard and ultimately futile?
July 1, 2007 6:54 PM   Subscribe

"Grigioni, now back in Switzerland, said she could normally get tortoises to ejaculate within minutes, but spent months manually stimulating George and never extracted semen from him."
posted by mr_crash_davis (46 comments total)

 
Ok, so out of a 17 paragraph article about the impending extinction of an entire species of animal, you pick the only one that sounds like porn.
posted by miss lynnster at 7:09 PM on July 1, 2007


Yes, but tortoise semen is not as efficacious as owl semen.
posted by Henry C. Mabuse at 7:10 PM on July 1, 2007


Stay classy, Mr_Crash_Davis.
posted by miss lynnster at 7:11 PM on July 1, 2007


Aw. Poor George. Poor species. :(

I like turtles.
Anyone who posts a link to that damn YTMND gets their arms chopped off.
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 7:12 PM on July 1, 2007


reverend to you
posted by exlotuseater at 7:13 PM on July 1, 2007


it could be worse.

she could be sailing the high seas in search of whale dookie.
posted by jason's_planet at 7:20 PM on July 1, 2007


Sorry, miss lynnster, I read about someone jacking off a tortoise for months at a time with no result and I just immediately think of Metafilter.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 7:26 PM on July 1, 2007 [14 favorites]


    wait. comeback. i love you!
__ /
_____ (@@)
-/ \ / \//O
,,| ,,|
posted by wfrgms at 7:27 PM on July 1, 2007 [15 favorites]


previously (masturbating elephants for science)
posted by pruner at 7:30 PM on July 1, 2007


"I work for the animal to have explosion, for liquid, to make them have more animals. My specialty is camel to have liquid explosion."
posted by Mayor Curley at 7:31 PM on July 1, 2007 [1 favorite]


Just don't say "hi five." Keep your camel-covered hands to yourself.
posted by miss lynnster at 7:39 PM on July 1, 2007


Here's a more detailed account. Sadly, there are no pictures of her.

As Nicholls tells the story — and he is a brilliant storyteller and narrative stylist in the finest tradition — a beautiful Swiss graduate student named Sveva Grigioni undertook the tried and true method of semen extraction as practiced by animal breeders. In tortoises the penis is tucked away inside the tail for safe keeping while it traverses across sharp lava rubble. When aroused, the penis emerges and becomes erect, allowing an ejaculation to occur. Scientists have had some success in capturing an ejaculate for artificial insemination by, well, a form of human-tortoise foreplay. As Nicholls describes the process employed by one scientist on another tortoise:

She began to touch his rear end and stroke his legs, causing the beast to raise himself off the ground. She then began to caress his tail. Eventually the penis flopped out and with more gentle rubbing produced an ejaculate.

Grigioni first practiced this process on other male tortoises, and she was able to produce an ejaculation inside 10 minutes. But George has been lonesome for a very long time and when she entered his pen, “He was very shy at the beginning. He was such a big animal and he was so afraid.” Grigioni spent days habituating herself to him so that she could finally touch and stroke him. Nothing. Grigioni then smeared her hands with genital secretions from females of a closely related tortoise species, and that at least got a look at George’s penis, which appeared to be in good working order. But the subsequent attempts to get an ejaculation, or to get him to mount a female, failed. As Grigioni explained: “Day by day, he started to be more interested in the females. He started to try copulation but it was like he really didn’t know how.”
posted by stavrogin at 7:40 PM on July 1, 2007


"so, how was work today, honey?"

"eh ... all i did was jack off"
posted by pyramid termite at 7:55 PM on July 1, 2007


Probably just being shy. Maybe she should wait for him to cum out of his shell?
posted by hal9k at 8:08 PM on July 1, 2007


Seriously, I'm not sure any amount of you're-saving-a-species-and-its-totally-necessary goody goody feelings could get me past the fact that I spent most of my day giving a tortoise a handjob.
posted by Parannoyed at 8:10 PM on July 1, 2007 [1 favorite]


I don' know which would be worse, the feeling you get when you realize that you have to give a handjob to a tortoise, or the crushing defeat in being unable to bring him to release. Like, wouldn't that really make you doubt your tortoise handjob technique?
posted by thatswherebatslive at 8:18 PM on July 1, 2007 [1 favorite]


Grigioni first practiced this process on other male tortoises, and she was able to produce an ejaculation inside 10 minutes.

Am I reading this correctly - where the beautiful grad student Sveva consoles herself by telling the interviewer that all of the other turtles had a really good time? George: "It's not your fault honey, it's okay, I'm just distracted at work."
posted by litfit at 8:25 PM on July 1, 2007


Maybe George is gay...
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 8:31 PM on July 1, 2007


sometimes every seed truly is scared
posted by caddis at 8:32 PM on July 1, 2007


Slow and steady wins the race.
posted by L. Fitzgerald Sjoberg at 8:36 PM on July 1, 2007 [2 favorites]


Well, the excerpted quote extracted semen from me in minutes!
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:40 PM on July 1, 2007


This is the 21st century. Can't they clone 'em?
posted by delmoi at 8:51 PM on July 1, 2007


"dude, he's just not into you."
posted by shavenwarthog at 9:08 PM on July 1, 2007 [2 favorites]


Dear Sveva,

DTMFA.

-Dan Savage
posted by BrotherCaine at 9:15 PM on July 1, 2007 [3 favorites]


Herein lies a tale for our times: human degradation...

So, uh, why do you want her picture?
posted by geos at 9:16 PM on July 1, 2007


This is the 21st century. Can't they clone 'em?

This is something that has bothered me for a long time. Where is the charity that admits that because of human selfishness, the overwhelming majority of animal species are doomed, and spends 95% of all donated money towards gene sequencing various animal types in order from least to most likely to go extinct in the near future?

It would be the one conservation charity that even a selfish bastard like myself would give to. I *KNOW* we're not going to stop raping the natural world, and I *KNOW* we're going to end up killing 90% of the species currently in existence, so let's start getting their genetics on file for the distant future . . .
posted by Ryvar at 9:17 PM on July 1, 2007


Sveva Grigioni
posted by geos at 9:18 PM on July 1, 2007


"Lonesome George:" never did care much about nothing 'cept what he cared for in his reptilian mind...lived long.
posted by taosbat at 9:26 PM on July 1, 2007


"It's important to have a job that makes a difference, boys. That's why I manually masturbate caged animals for artificial insemination."
posted by Pope Guilty at 9:35 PM on July 1, 2007


Lonesome George
posted by taosbat at 9:41 PM on July 1, 2007


National Lampoon, way back when it was a funny magazine instead of a brand you stamp on horribly unfunny movies in the hope of getting someone to go see it before the reviews come out, actually did a thing about getting tortoises to ejaculate. Although in their story it they did it by getting rabbits to, um, I'll just stop there.

P.S. Let's take the 'eponysterical' comment re my moniker as regards this post as given, okay?
posted by George_Spiggott at 9:49 PM on July 1, 2007


"It's important to have a job that makes a difference, boys. That's why I manually masturbate caged animals for artificial insemination."
posted by Pope Guilty


...bull seamen for your tender steak...

posted by taosbat at 9:59 PM on July 1, 2007


I felt like putting a bullet between the eyes of every Panda Galapagos tortoise that wouldn't screw to save its species.·
posted by ao4047 at 10:01 PM on July 1, 2007


What's a Spiggott?
posted by UbuRoivas at 10:02 PM on July 1, 2007


The Wired article describes her as 'comely'.
posted by tellurian at 10:03 PM on July 1, 2007


UbiRoivas,

Twenty bucks, same as in town.
posted by George_Spiggott at 10:09 PM on July 1, 2007


Steven C. Den Beste - Maybe George is gay...

Are you saying that she should have tried heatbutting George a few times?
posted by porpoise at 10:17 PM on July 1, 2007


The Wired article describes her as 'comely'

How does Wired know what a tortoise would find attractive? Never mind; I don't think I want to know.
posted by Slothrup at 10:24 PM on July 1, 2007


Twenty bucks?!?!?

That had better be full service!
posted by UbuRoivas at 10:31 PM on July 1, 2007


UbiRoivas - Twenty bucks?!?!?

Full service is usually 2 or 3 c-notes. A handjob is anywhere from a 20 to a benjamin. Unless you're talking crack hoes.

A hand job from a science chick? I'm thinking either protein and nucleic acids or far far more money than you're able to pay.

posted by porpoise at 10:36 PM on July 1, 2007


Aesop for the New Millennium: The Tortoise and the Hairy Palm
posted by rob511 at 11:00 PM on July 1, 2007


We've owned California Desert Tortoises since I was a kid and I still laugh whenever I come across a pair of them making little tortoises.
posted by buggzzee23 at 11:06 PM on July 1, 2007


A hand job from a science chick? I'm thinking either protein and nucleic acids or far far more money than you're able to pay.

I think I'll go with the former method, rather than the cash, but would prefer to pay over many instalments, if that's possible.

posted by UbuRoivas at 12:38 AM on July 2, 2007


maybe the article got it wrong. could be george isn't disinterested, he just has incredible stamina.
posted by bruce at 1:15 AM on July 2, 2007


I'm reminded of the species extinction clock...
posted by chuckdarwin at 3:34 AM on July 2, 2007


Now, THAT is what I call a grabber. . . and a pretty good intro statement, too!
posted by absalom at 6:39 AM on July 2, 2007


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