Despite the number of people who try to convince us that pee is perfectly fine and even healthy to drink, most of us can't get past the fact that, frankly, it's freaking disgusting. We've seen where it comes from. We know its secrets.
But hey, we're not scientists.
The Nobel Prize committee has been very clear on that point.
The good people at NASA aren't just completely at ease with the ickiest of bodily liquids; they're actually hell-bent on putting it to good use. In an effort to distance themselves even further from the average human being, NASA scientists have spent a good $250 million to inspect piss and turn it back into water. Decades of research and a dickload of pissy prototypes later, NASA scientists have indeed managed to develop a machine that filters piss and adds it to other liquids derived from, no kidding, human sweat and evaporated laundry water -- seemingly for no other reason than to create yet another horrible obstacle for astronauts to overcome.
The funny thing is, that unholy concoction is far cleaner than U.S. tap water.
Share and enjoy!
And don't think that these studies have been done to provide astronauts with clean liquids in space; NASA doesn't give a shit about what its astronauts drink.
Several U.S. communities have developed a boner for the system and have in fact already implemented it. One of the largest piss-to-water plants is currently in Orange County, California, doing its part to provide slightly used water for a respectable 500,000 people.
And the urinals have never been cleaner.
For that small, strange segment of our readers who find the idea of introducing ex-pee to your daily life intriguing, NASA has also developed a version of the system you can use at home. The product has the refreshingly honest name of Pee-Recycling Bag, and it uses a process called forward osmosis to convert your piss into a healthy, drinkable, sugary fluid.
And now we all know how energy drinks are made.
"It helps aerate the ginseng!"
As much as we like to riff on scientists, there are obviously boundaries we know they would never cross. Sure, they may be building robots that are just waiting to rise against us and performing profoundly disturbing psychological experiments, but that's just par for the science course. It's not as if they're actually plotting to feed us Soylent Green or anything. (Boy, this paragraph sure has gotten pretty foreshadowy.)
It's almost like Bruce Willis is dead himself ...
Like so many interesting things in life, it all starts with a bucket of Jell-O. Thinking of how that delicious gloop is made, it's easy to just conjure an image of a laboratory with Flubber creatures bouncing all over while wacky scientists chase them around.
However, that's just our brain's feeble attempt to distract us from the real truth: The most important ingredient in gelatin is collagen, which is derived from the bones and skin of animals -- mostly pigs and cows.
The side effect of this production method is the ever-present risk that the gelatin you eat might screw over your immune system or give you infectious diseases. This is further enforced by the fact that gelatin quality control is a right bastard, as it's an animal extract and therefore pretty inconsistent by nature.
This used to be a Shetland pony.
Scientists have been trying to figure out how to make safer gelatin for a while now. One day, one of them realized that there is in fact one animal whose remains work just fine with human immunology and genetic structure.
That animal? Humans.
The Urban Shogun
It's probably a good thing that their slogan isn't "It's alive!" anymore.
Yes, they've developed a technique to make gelatin by injecting human genes into yeast strains, and if "specific, controlled ways" (as illustrated on page 237 of the Necronomicon, presumably) are followed, it's actually said to be healthier than ye olde pig jelly. They have also already figured out ways to make the process commercially viable, so we may well be seeing human gelatin in supermarkets pretty soon, hiding behind a bullshit E-codename.
Naturally, the biggest concern here -- besides the obvious ohgodwhyaaaargh! -- is whether human Jell-O counts as cannibalism. Granted, nobody's actually chewing an arm off a dude, but there's still an ick factor in the knowledge that it's human extract we're eating ...
... wait a second. We already eat trace amounts of hair and dead skin in pretty much all of our meals, don't we? Holy shit, does that count as cannibalism, too?
Let's, uh, let's not play this game anymore.
When XJ is not protecting the world from devastation or uniting all peoples within the nation, he writes fantasy and talks about it at xjselman.wordpress.com. Sadly, all this work doesn't leave much time for blogging, but he'd still appreciate your views. You can also follow him here.
For more disturbing things the future holds for us, check out 6 Insane Laws We'll Need in the Future and 5 Visions of the Future From Experts (Who Should Be Fired).
If you're pressed for time and just looking for a quick fix, then check out 10 Minutes After the End of 'The Matrix' Trilogy.
And stop by LinkSTORM to discover why an MLP uprising is soon upon us.
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