Episode 41: This One’s About COVID

Colored scanning electron micrograph image showing SARS-CoV-2 emerging from the surface of cells cultured in the lab.

Image: “This scanning electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2 (round gold objects) emerging from the surface of cells cultured in the lab. SARS-CoV-2, also known as 2019-nCoV, is the virus that causes COVID-19. The virus shown was isolated from a patient in the U.S. Image captured and colorized at NIAID’s Rocky Mountain Laboratories (RML) in Hamilton, Montana.” (Source: NIAID on Flickr, used under the conditions of CC BY 2.0)

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This transcript has not been edited for clarity or accuracy. It will be updated shortly.

Charles 0:28
Hello and welcome to a sign scientist at bachelor’s. I’m Charles and I’m an entomologist. And I’m PESA and I’m an astrobiologist. And this episode is just the two of us to talk about something you may have heard of the novel Coronavirus, because one of us has had now a very intimate encounter.

Tessa 0:47
Yes. Extraordinarily intimate, unfortunately, with the virus.

Charles 0:52
So first off, how’re you doing?

Tessa 0:57
I am fine. Now, you know, fortunately, my case of COVID was very mild. I attribute that largely to the fact that I was triple faxed. I’d had the booster about two weeks before. Yeah, so now I’m fine. I don’t seem to have any lingering.

Charles 1:10
Which brand or are you Pfizer girl?

Tessa 1:12

Charles 1:13
Pfizer party? It’s I feel like there’s kind of no way to start without sounding like accusatory like, what did you do wrong? That you got? But I don’t, you know…

Tessa 1:25
My suspicion is I went to a burlesque show, but I don’t know, the timing for that doesn’t quite line up. But that’s the closest thing I can think of.

Charles 1:34
They always said that it would be the decadent transexuals. Bring us down and you’ve only proved them right.

Tessa 1:41
[laughs] So yeah, yeah. And I was performing to I wasn’t just,

Charles 1:45
[jokingly] Oh, no, it’s even worse! No, but I do think that gets into I spend too much time on Twitter, which my mom has reportedly told me not to do and I’ve ignored her because I’m an adult. I probably shouldn’t though, because Twitter is not great for mental health. But I will say there are a lot of back and forth on Twitter, people who are very annoyed with those who are not taking what they deemed to be appropriate protective action, versus those who are continuously getting mad at what they perceive as leftist scolds, who are disengaged from the reality of life during a pandemic.

Tessa 2:29
In my defense, I, you know, I had been triple faxed and I was also wearing a mask pretty much the entire time. But it was a cloth mask, which at the time I didn’t realize apparently is not necessarily sufficient to protect you from the new omachron variants.

Charles 2:46
And I will say I don’t want to be it’s my natural propensity is to be one of those leftist scolds because, golly, I do love to scold people, you know. And so I was having this conversation with my sister and my sister is an extrovert. And I’m an introvert. And I know people on the internet love to get annoying about this rigid introvert extrovert dichotomy, where particularly self identified introverts get very weird about it, like, Oh, I like to read books and think thoughts. Whereas extroverts are all going to burlesque shows, and getting sicknesses from each other sexual and otherwise, I don’t think that. But it’s been very easy for me emotionally to be quite limited in my context, throughout the pandemic, because I, as we’ve discussed before, I heard about the Serbian monk who lives in a cave, and I was a little bit jealous of that guy. That’s where I’m at. And my sister was like, a lot of us just can’t, we just like literally cannot continue with that level of restriction. And I was like, I don’t understand it, but I have to respect it. Particularly because I’ve been reading a book called How to Survive a plague, which is about the AIDS epidemic. There have been a lot of comparisons drawn between COVID and HIV AIDS, not because they are virally very similar, but because those are both kind of the major pandemics in living memory of most of the people alive today. And sort of a crucial lesson learned through the AIDS crisis was that a very rigid all or nothing approach rarely actually works for risk mitigation, because people will find the all unbearable and thus will do nothing. This is kind of also the failure of abstinence only education with regards to you know, sexual education, right? Yeah. And why that leads to so many more unplanned teen pregnancy and STI transmission, etc, etc. Where if you expect people to just completely lock themselves down and indulge in absolutely none of the pleasures of life, that is not going to fly for everybody except extremely introverted. dorks who have generalized anxiety disorder. My roundabout point is I am emphatically not blaming you for getting COVID. Particularly because we both live in what is currently known as central Arizona. And people are not, it’s, it’s not great out there.

Tessa 5:35
Yeah, what’s particularly annoying is that at least for the company that I performed with, like, they’re very strict about it, you know, you have to have proof of vaccination, or, you know, a negative COVID test masking is required. So I’m pretty sure it wasn’t any of us. I’m pretty sure it was one of the audience members. And yeah, they are much greater selection, or much wider selection of the general public here in lovely Arizona, and are as a result of much less likely to be observant of precautions for the pandemic.

Charles 6:07
But yeah, if you don’t mind, can we talk a little bit about the experience of certain COVID what it felt like how it compared to other viruses you’ve had in your life?

Tessa 6:18
So it was, you know, again, I was lucky in that it was very, very mild. I mean, as these things go, basically, you know, it started on the Tuesday, I guess, week and a half for Christmas. So yeah, on Tuesday, the 15th You know, no, just a little like, scratchiness in my throat, occasional coughs and little congestion, nothing much, I actually thought it was like just a cold at first, you know, nothing major. And I didn’t really think too much of it for like, the next few days. I mean, I isolate myself just to be on the safe side. But um, you know, it didn’t register as COVID for me until I went and you know, went to ASU for context. ASU provides a free testing service based off of a saliva based PCR test, just highly accurate, but takes about 24 hours to get back to you. And, you know, I dropped off my saliva sample, which is all now completely automated. It’s very, very sleek. Again, I was expecting a negative because I figured out this probably isn’t COVID Well, I take that back part of me was wondering, well, I mean, I did get vaccinated, maybe this is COVID. And that’s why it’s so mild, but I you know, I was not really expecting it to be COVID. And so I was kind of a little shocked when it turned out to be positive. ASU to their credit responded immediately, you know, I got texts and phone calls and emails, you know, making sure that I knew how to properly isolate and that who to call if my symptoms worsened, etc. And that, basically, I was not to go anywhere, have contact with anyone to the extent possible for the next 10 days. And then you know, about 48 hours before that 10 day window wound up, they would send me a survey about my symptoms, and depending on that set up a cons a telehealth console, my symptoms had not improved. If they hadn’t improved, then they would potentially send me a letter on the 10th day officially clearing me to leave isolation. And I was impressed, you know, with how fast and like how thorough it was, I hadn’t realized that Asus response had actually become that sophisticated. I guess I have low expectations for the state. I wonder why? Yeah, can’t imagine why in terms of symptoms, like about four or five days, and they did get a little bit worse. I had more coughing still not like as bad as some head colds I’ve had before. But there was definitely more coughing you know, one day I ended up sleeping for like 13 hours straight, which is a lot for me. So you know, I would

Charles 8:56
I would wait, I you know, I would say 13 hours is generally a lot for most people.

Tessa 9:01
Yeah, yeah. And you know, so it was definitely a loss of energy. I was running later discovered a mild fever. It, you know, was not particularly alarming. It never broke 100 But it was technically elevated. Fortunately, because it was mild enough. A lot of times I didn’t bother taking like fever reducing medication for it, because when it’s that low, it actually helps boost your immune system but doesn’t really interfere with your day to day life. And that’s basically how it went. The one thing that did make it distinguishable from you know, just a common cold is that it did take a few more days longer to wrap up usually with common colds I’m done with them within a week with this it went a bit longer before the symptoms really started to fade.

Charles 9:38
Why did you initially get tested just out of an abundance of Oh, yeah,

Tessa 9:42
anytime I have symptoms, or frankly, anytime that I’ve just been in a place where I might have been exposed. I got tested just to be on the safe side. Interestingly enough, I’ve been told not to test myself unless I like read, you know, reasonably I’ve somehow gotten sick again for the next three months because otherwise there’s a risk false positive, I guess because you know, the PCR antigen test will still pick up on the fact that, you know, you still have antibodies or whatnot, at least that’s what I’m assuming. Well,

Charles 10:08
can I ask you are married? Yes. And you live with your wife, as many wives do? Did Alex get your wife develop any kind of symptomatic she

Tessa 10:18
did not. Um, she, you know, she’d been tested, she was and she came back negative, there was one day where she was a little tired. It, ya know, she never had full blown symptoms, she never tested positive the entire time, even though you know, we were staying in the same bed together, which, technically speaking, you’re not supposed to do if you can avoid it, we have a small one bedroom apartment where frequently the ventilation doesn’t work anyways. So you know, there was really no way for to avoid it. Yeah, so she never tested positive. And like I said, for my own my symptoms were again, very mild, you know, I never had the loss of taste or smell at least it beyond what you would normally get from being congested. You know, I never had any of the wheezing or the difficulty shortness of breath, none of the weirder stuff that can happen with COVID. So I was fortunate in that regard. But yeah, so and then, you know, 10th Day rolled around, I hadn’t had a fever, and in at least 48 hours, which was one of the major criteria they had for whether or not you would be cleared from isolation, you know, my symptoms had been improving. So, you know, I got the official letter, then saying that you’ve been cleared and you know, can leave your apartment if you want to, although I still didn’t do that for like another three or four days, just to be safe, it was not a terrible experience, I would have obviously preferred not to have gotten COVID. But if I have to get COVID, this is probably the best possible way you can get it and still be symptomatic. In a weird way. It did mean that my wife and I got to have a quiet little Christmas, just the two of us because I was still in isolation. And there’s no way we’re gonna go visit her parents like we normally do.

Charles 11:55
Yeah, this is only barely related. But just I am so mad at everybody who lies and says that they’ve been vaccinated, and then they go hang out with people. And then it turns out, they were positive, and they weren’t vaccinated, and they put everybody at risk. I’ve seen a lot of these stories, which is why I’m probably never going to trust a human person ever.

Tessa 12:21
Yeah, it’s really discouraging, particularly since you know, it was a bad idea before we had Omicron. But a little bit of epidemiology for all of our listeners, there’s a concept called the basic reproductive rate, or the R naught, because it’s an R with a little zero attached to it. And that is pretty much on average, how many if you are infected, on average, how many other people will you infect before you recover from the disease, and you know, are no longer contagious for most of COVID-19 history was 60 or below, which is a lot, it’s definitely on the higher end, I have seen estimates. And there isn’t necessarily consensus on this, but there’s at least some serious estimates put it as 15 or higher. If you go out and you have COVID Even if you’re asymptomatic, you could infect as many as 15 other people or more. And that literally makes it the second most contagious virus known, which is only the most one can do just one is measles, which has an R naught of like 18 and 19. So, you know, it’s still pretty close to measles, too. And I think people just haven’t really wrap their heads around, like how catchy This variant is.

Charles 13:31
I love that these this is sarcasm, that these two most infectious viruses are both ones that have been heavily involved with the anti vaccine movement.

Tessa 13:45
Yeah, yeah. You know, well, I mean, there’s a reason, vaccines against them are pretty much mandatory, especially for measles if you want to do anything in public, and that’s because they are so contagious.

Charles 13:57
I propose you can join my movement, if you want of a counterbalance to the anti Vax movement of a max Vax movement. Where just shoot me up with anything.

Tessa 14:10
Oh, yeah, yeah, no, I’m totally down for this

Charles 14:12
is talking to my mom the other day, and I was like, I would love to get vaccinated against shingles. And she was like, I think you’re too young. And I was like, Yeah, but I don’t have to be

Tessa 14:21
Yeah, exactly. You know, sign me up for all of it, you know, HPV, every single flu shot, you name it.

Charles 14:28
Whatever, you know, I probably won’t get yellow fever. But I could, you know, I sure don’t want to

Tessa 14:35
help throw in rabies there too. While you’re at it just in case.

Charles 14:39
I go outside, there’s rabies out there.

Tessa 14:42
It’s actually surprisingly frustratingly difficult to get a rabies vaccine. Like I’m not even sure if my wife was ever vaccinated. And she was about an area talked about

Charles 14:52
this with Ray. Yeah, yeah. They keep increasing like the range of ages. iz and genders that the HPV vaccine whichever one is preeminent, HPV vaccine on the market is they just keep increasing that. And it’s always baffles me that originally it was only recommended for girls and by girls. Of course that means people who were born with vulva, right? Because most of these people are having sex with people with primarily external genitalia, just statistically, and they’re getting it from somebody. So I just I’ve never understood the reasoning behind not just

Tessa 15:38
Yeah, I don’t either. I mean, if you want to actually like take out a virus, or at least minimize it, you should be including the people who can spread it, even if it doesn’t really manifest in symptoms. And also, you know, it can you know, there is a risk associated with penile cancer. I believe what HPV is

Charles 15:55
the HPV is that are sexually transmitted are, I believe the leading cause of oral pharyngeal cancer? Oh,

Tessa 16:04
I didn’t know that.

Charles 16:05
Let me Google this real quick so that I’m not telling tale that a school from the CDC which I’m kind of, I feel broken up with a little bit right now, but whatever, okay. HPV can infect the mouth and throat and cause cancers of the oropharynx back of the throat, including the base of the tongue and tonsils. This is called oral pharyngeal cancer. HPV is thought to cause 70% of oropharyngeal cancers in the United States. Listen, I know not to get blue women love going down on each other. God bless. But inevitably, there are going to be people who don’t have a cervix, who are also performing those actions. Yep, no, you know what I’m putting down. Plus, I feel like I’ve read, even if only sis people existed, sometimes men are gay. You know, it has been known to happen, it hasn’t been known to happen. Occasionally, listen, genitals, tongues, fingers, they all go all over the place, and HPVs are not transmitted via fluid. They are topical infection, like so even like, wearing a condom, for instance, is not going to completely protect against HPV transmission, because it is surface to surface not liquid based. So that’s just a PSA for everybody. If you thought using protection for oral sex with people was weird. Maybe just reconsider because you don’t know where somebody has been. And the people you’re hooking up with don’t know where you’ve been. And probably neither do you in terms of viral if you also get vaccinated, just get all of them. If somebody is like, Hey, do you want this vaccine? Your best answer is usually probably yes,

Tessa 17:50
usually. But to wind this all back, I am 100% on board with Max backs.

Charles 17:55
Nice. Well, we got two of us feel like I saw somebody talking about this on Twitter one time. So that’s three

Tessa 18:01
baby steps, Charles baby steps so well,

Charles 18:03
to make this more of a rounded like scientifically informative episode. I also thought it would be fun to investigate a question that I have had about vaccines and viruses. And so I was thinking about it. And I was reading some different stuff. And I was curious why we do not hear about vaccine resistant evolution of viruses the same way we hear about antibiotic resistant evolution of pathogens like bacteria. Have you ever thought about?

Tessa 18:35
Yeah, no, that is a good question. I mean, we clearly see it with like, you know, obviously my case, that’s exactly what happened is that, you know, a strain developed, which was able to evade at least somewhat, the immune protection generated by a vaccine. And, you know, that’s also why people need to, you know, they roll out a different flu vaccine every year. I think the reason that it’s less commonly thought about is because the mutation time for viruses can vary tremendously.

Charles 19:06
Well, I did, I looked into this. And I found a couple of papers slash articles by this pair of researchers, who I’m just going to assume are best friends because they wrote multiple articles on the same topic together, David a Kennedy and Andrew F re from the Center for Infectious Disease dynamics, Department of Biology and entomology, the Pennsylvania State University. And so they’ve written several papers about this, they published one in 2017 called Why does drug resistance readily evolved, but vaccine resistance does not and then another into that’s an 18. Why the evolution of vaccine resistance is less of a concern than the evolution of drug resist. And their conclusion was basically that there are two or three primary factors for why we so much more often see specifically evolution of resistance in bacteria following treatment through antibiotics versus evolution of resistance in viruses following widespread vaccination. And their conclusion was basically, first that vaccines are generally prophylactic rather than reactive, whereas treatment for bacterial infections, for instance, are more reactive, meaning that you generally get vaccinated against a virus well before and by design, before you have experienced infection by that virus. And part of the goal of the vaccine is to prevent a large enough population of that virus inside your body to you know, constitute like a widespread infection. Versus if you are infected with a bacterium, you generally are only going to receive treatment once you are symptomatic from that infection. And by that point, necessarily, the population of the pathogen is quite large. Whereas if you are vaccinated against a virus, the whole idea of putting it very simply is that you will be able to mount an immune response and keep that viral population low before it can really cause symptoms. So the actual population size of things that are reacting to whatever treatment is being given is usually much much bigger in for instance, bacteria than viruses. And then secondly, quote, evolution pre vaccines induce immune responses that attack several different parts of the microbe at the same time, meaning that a vaccine generally will direct an immune response against several different aspects of thing that is mounting an invasion. So in the case of like COVID-19 vaccines, it can be against like some of the spike proteins, but then some other recognizable proteins. And they did find that this has already been shown in the laboratory for SARS, cov to the virus rapidly evolved resistance to antibodies targeting a single site, but struggled to evolve resistance to a cocktail of antibodies, each targeting multiple different sites. So when you have vaccines that are well engineered to attack invading pathogens, I think it’s easy to forget that a virus is a physical object in space, maybe it doesn’t slip other people’s minds the way that it does mind. But because viruses are so small, and we tend to think of them as sort of not rooted in a in an imaginable physical room, right away.

Yeah, the virus is a tiny physical thing that has recognizable physical characteristics. And so a well engineered vaccine, a really effective vaccine usually will be one that will be like will tell your immune system or whatever, and I hope there are no virologists, epidemiologists virus, people microbiologists in the audience, screaming at me for over simplifying things, if they are sending an audio clip, and we’ll put it in the next episode. But generally, if you like the Coronavirus, is known for its spike proteins on the outside, which help it gain access to cells, right. But we’ve seen lots of different little mutations in different parts of the genome of the virus, that change like this protein, or they change that protein. And so it is easy for a singular mute. And there have been across different variants, evidence of the same mutation evolving independently multiple different times in different lineages and across variants that might in a, you know, increase efficacy of transmission might increase, like, you know, how harshly they affect the body, etc, etc. But if you have vaccines that target multiple different things, even if they can randomly mutate, one, you know, mutation that helps increase transmissibility, if that is sort of a winning card. But there are still these five other mutations that are targeted effectively by the vaccine, that still helps shut down infection and population growth much more than a sort of a generalized antibiotic would against bacteria. So that’s very interesting. And it seems like kind of what you reference the major form of evolution that we see post vaccination in sort of viruses that are well established within different host populations. So for example, in COVID, that the most common form of evolution is not the evolution of resistance, specifically within certain strains or within certain lineages to the vaccine specifically, but instead, the effective suppression of certain strains, and then the replacement of them by others that already have kind of a natural sort of resistance to the vaccines that are being used, which is kind of different from the evolution of resistant traits and their, you know, proliferation within a certain strain. Right. But it’s basically like, instead of seeing changes within a strain, we’re seeing the vaccine or a vaccine theoretically, tamp down a specific strain and then others that have already been from one of these papers. This focus excludes cases of quote common variant serotype replacement, and which strains of a pathogen that were previously observed, but intentionally not targeted by vaccines rise in frequency after the onset of vaccination. Although serotype replacement is a form of evolution and an important consideration and vaccinated host population, this process is perhaps better explained by purely ecological factors. And thus we’re in separate exploration, which I think is this paper is from 2018. So it was not speaking about the novel Coronavirus. But from what I can tell, this seems like more of a case where it is less that vaccination has driven the evolution of new variants. But that because so we have such a huge population of people who are susceptible or infected. And we have so many situations in which somebody can rapidly spread it to a lot of different people. These mutations happen naturally, because mutations just happen in the copying over of genetic material across all life forms that have genetic material, as far as we know, and that they opportunistically then become much more well established versus the specific mutation being driven by vaccines and resistance to vaccines themselves, which I guess is good news. Um, although it’s hard to feel particularly hopeful about anything. But I mean, it is good news that not only did you not become seriously ill with COVID. But you had a pretty mild case, you were able to self isolate, which is great. So you hopefully didn’t infect anybody else. And yeah, that’s what I’m hoping even your wife who lives with you. Yeah, presumably, didn’t get I mean, it’s possible that she did. And it just didn’t show up in the one test that she took.

Tessa 27:41
We’ve wondered about that. But in any case, she was never symptomatic. So that’s good

Charles 27:45
news. The bad news is pretty much all the other news, yep. I actually is thinking in a new year, it would be fun to make a new questions for our like, into Episode discussions. Hmm. I have one. Sure. Yeah. What’s your Okay, so I’ve been rereading Animorphs as anybody who follows us on Twitter will know because that account is now an Animorphs account. And I have no regrets and no apologies. So in the first book, spoiler warning, but one of the premises of the books is that these kids are given this alien power to morph. If they acquire animal DNA, they can then become that animal. But if you stay in a more for more than two hours, you will get stuck in that morph. And you can never get out of it. And so my question to you is, if you had to become what the end lights no as enough lit, ie, someone stuck in a morph, what do you think would be sort of your best case scenario?

Tessa 28:56
Yeah, no. It’s funny, because I knew exactly where that’s where this question was going. I would probably go with Swan because you get to fly. But you’re big enough that no one wants to mess with you. And also, my original choice was like Falcon or some bird of prey, but then I’d feel like morally ambiguous about like having to eat small, cute rodents, but swans mostly just eat, you know, sub aquatic vegetation and, you know, doesn’t look unappealing. And you know, they’re strong enough that you know, they can easily break your nose. So, yeah, you know, it’s not like,

Charles 29:29
oh, how long this one’s generally live?

Tessa 29:31
I’m not sure. I mean, that’s going to be like, actually, if we’re going to go based on longevity a better bet would probably be one of the South American parents since they can live up to 75 to 100 years and you probably have a complex enough layer next to our Learn equivalent. I don’t know exactly. I think birds have a seer next, technically.

Charles 29:50
Oh, no,

Tessa 29:51
Alex, what’s the equivalent for learn next and birds? Ha, I remembered it Sirex but they have a sophisticated siren You could probably still talk to people. So that’d be nice. I mean, if you’re an athlete, you’re still telepathic. So it probably doesn’t matter. But you know, still, it’d be cool to mess with people.

Charles 30:08
I was thinking about this earlier. And my obviously answer is cat, right? God’s most perfect animal. But I’m I would be so I have such social anxiety, that I would be really afraid that I would become a cat and then other cats would reject it. That would be devastating, absolutely devastating. Because my other thing is, I don’t know that you necessarily want to go for longevity, because you are now in your case, a bird and you can’t like go to the movie theater. Or that’s a

Tessa 30:51
good point. Yeah, I’m proud about that. A lot of it would depend on quality of life,

Charles 30:55
because I think because to bias kind of has a refuge emotionally where he has a project to focus on, which is disrupting the Europe invasion of Earth. But like, as we see after the series ends, and all these kids are traumatized for guys, but he kind of loses himself, because kind of doesn’t have anything to do anymore. Except just be a bird. Yep. And other reasons, including the death of loved ones very close to him. A traumatic war, moral compromise.

Tessa 31:29
I mean, the kids basically child soldier, he’s going to be messed up, essentially. Yes,

Charles 31:33
yes. So other than cat, it’s tough. I definitely wouldn’t go for any of the other apes, though, because I think being relatively close to human, but definitively not human would be worse than becoming something fair upgrade. I mean, I think probably a large herbivore that nobody like a hippo would be a good idea. Especially if you could live in a zoom. Because then you definitely aren’t getting predated upon like not even attempts, you’ve got it pretty mad. And if you get bored, you can just terrorize zookeepers.

Tessa 32:10
And I honestly suspect that probably never gets old, probably.

Charles 32:14
Because here’s the other thing that I know about zookeepers, which is that they like most biologists who get really attached to study subjects are willing to cut the things hurting them a huge amount of slack. Like, if you’re a hippo in a zoo, there is gonna be somebody who is taking care of you. Even if you break their leg. They’re they’re still gonna love you unconditionally. I had not thought about that. But that’s a good point. So I think it’s not I don’t feel a greatest kinship with hippos. But I think, practically and logistically speaking, I think a hippo is a good option, especially because I am a vegetarian, as a human, which is not necessarily a moral stance. I like don’t think that right, but you want to keep it it’s at this point, it’s just like, I think it would really bummed me out to have to like, because, you know, thinking about being like a large cat like a tiger or something, right where you’re big, beautiful, powerful, nobody’s gonna mess with you, etc, etc. You still have to like run stuff down and hunt. Yeah,

Tessa 33:22
it’s a lot more effort.

Charles 33:24
Kind of just want to chill in a river.

Tessa 33:26
Yeah, you know, that’s kind of why I went for Swan initially. It’s because you know, you just hang out on Lake looking pretty anyone messes with you. You can break their nose.

Charles 33:33
You can pretend to be a princess. Yeah, yeah.

Tessa 33:36
You say that? Like I’m not a princess.

Charles 33:40
I have no response.

Tessa 33:42
Sorry. Wide open. I couldn’t. We just

Charles 33:45
were. monarchy is the thing of the past.

Tessa 33:49
Yeah, Agreed. Agreed.

Charles 33:52
Yeah, well, I think that’s our first good new question. If you had to get stuck in a morph, which one would you go for? We got to get furries on the pod and ask them that because I think they would have what because Here’s. Here’s another idea. We know that how have you read many of the animals books?

Tessa 34:12
Yes. Although it’s been a while for some of them. Okay,

Charles 34:15
but you know, that x the Andalite, who joins their group creates a human morph by taking the DNA from Jake and Rachel and Cassie.

Tessa 34:25
Yeah, I remember that one. Yeah. From episode four. A book for the message.

Charles 34:29
Yes. So I’m wondering if you were a furry and you were like, my persona is like a bird deer. I’m like part bird and I’m part deer. Could you take DNA from a bird and DNA from a deer and make you’re like, could you make a morph? Okay, your first this is going

Tessa 34:49
to be spoilers but for our future talk, or future episode on this very subject, namely Animorphs, featuring potentially my wife and former veterinary intern physicists who is probably the natural person to have on the show, but cannot fish combination of special and not because the or different organ systems of the animal and question of the animals plural and question will interfere with each other.

Charles 35:18
I’m picking up what you’re putting down.

Tessa 35:20
She can explain it better than I can. So, yeah, because we’ve actually had this discussion, believe it or not,

Charles 35:26
I Are you? Of course I believe it. I know who I’m talking to. But okay, a different question. Let’s say you were like, Cassie, and really, really good at morphing. I guess you can’t go from one morph to another, though. So you could only do like a human. Yeah, animal hybrid. Because I don’t think we’ve seen because there are a number of close calls in the books where they’re like D morph to morph D morph. And they like, say that they’re having trouble getting out of a more fun, they kind of feel kind of stuck. But we I don’t know that there is a case of somebody getting stuck. Not in a full morph. But in an intermediate stage. Yeah,

Tessa 36:06
I don’t think there is.

Charles 36:08
So if you were to like, let’s say you were like Kathy, who was the bet? Very artistic morpher my favorite character. If anybody wants to be negative about Cassie, they’re not. There’s simply not a lot on the podcast. That’s my role. That’s my hard limit. But like, let’s say that you wanted to have antennae. This here’s what I’m saying. Our cat boys a possibility in the Animorphs universe.

Tessa 36:35
You know what? I don’t know. Again. I think that’d be an excellent question for the animals episode because I am not sure.

Charles 36:41
Okay, well, I think that’s a perfect ending place. Great. Well, if people want to talk about this subject with me, I am on Twitter at cockroach orals

Tessa 36:51
and I am on Twitter at Space Race. SP ACR ma se although I haven’t been on very often in the last month or so just mental health break. You can also find out information about my stuff at pesah fisher.com.

Charles 37:04
You can find the podcast on Twitter at ASAP pod if you want to talk about Animorphs there also, we also have a website ASAP podcast.com where you can find show notes and transcripts for every episode. And if you enjoy the show, please tell other people who you think might enjoy it because supposedly that’s the best way that podcasts grow.

Tessa 37:27
And until next time, keep on science-ing.

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