by Julian Mortimer Smith
Was the monster created or discovered? There's no easy answer to that. We dragged it screaming from The Stew, that unknowable portal that the eggheads at Oak Ridge cobbled together from quantum physics and sheer hubris.
For the first few years it spent every waking hour wailing from its thousand throats, but nowadays it just weeps quietly in the containment field, tears oozing from those hypnotic, light-sensitive fins. Some say it's lonely; others say it's homesick. The scientists say we shouldn't project human emotions onto it, that it's probably just purging its body of unfamiliar earthly toxins.
The media are obsessed with the monster. It's been on the front page of every newspaper, an unwilling guest on every talk show, a fashion icon, an ambiguous political talking point.