I’ve been fascinated by slugs the last few weeks, ever since I noticed some crawling around outside Ashley’s apartment. Judging by their slime trails, which are visible glistening in the daylight, criss-crossing the sidewalks all over Sharpsburg, there’s a large and very active population. I’ve seen two kinds – shorter, thinner slugs that look gray or dark green, and longer, fatter ones that are more of a yellow color.
At first I assumed that the slugs were local to Ashley’s building. Her upstairs neighbor’s had a constantly dripping air conditioner hanging out of his window all summer, and the first slugs we noticed were crawling up Ashley’s steps toward the resulting puddle of water. Then we started to notice them further up the sidewalk, seemingly oblivious to the water dripped by the air conditioner. Then I began to notice the slime trails twisting across the sidewalks on the other side of town. Since there are no car dealerships or law practices in Sharpsburg, I concluded the slime trails must have come from slugs.
Ashley did some research and found that slugs are born hermaphrodites, and mate by coiling around one another and exchanging sperm. After mating, some slugs engage in the gory practice of chewing off the other’s penis. Slug pricks are corkscrew-shaped and sometimes get tangled after the exchange of sperm. Once a slug gets its cock bitten off by its mate, that slug becomes female and remains so for the rest of its life. When it dies it becomes potential food for – that’s right, motherfucker – other slugs. They bite off each other’s dicks, and they eat their own dead. You might think they’re pussies because they’re small and slimy and easily liquefied by a dash of salt, but make no mistake – slugs are fucking hardcore.