INDIAN OCEAN – A ten-year-old shark recently expressed feelings of ennui and uncertainty as he approached his midlife anniversary. “Sometimes I’m not sure I accomplished anything, you know?” Tom the Tiger shark said. “I’ve just been going non-stop, not thinking about consequences. Maybe it’s time I settle down?”
Tom admitted he has always been a reckless, troublesome youth. “Swim fast and die young, that was my motto,” Tom said. Always getting into youthful spats with seals or harassing elderly beach-goers, Tom believed his careless attitude stemmed from something deeper than youthful exuberance. “I just feel the need to always go go go,” Tom said. “Maybe it has to do with my mom trying to eat me when I was born. I just feel like I need to keep swimming or else I’ll die. But part of me wants to settle down and maybe have a family of my own,” he added.
It is not uncommon for many sharks reaching their midlife years to have an existential crisis. Often, sharks will alter their behavior in erratic and unexpected ways. Some sharks may become romantically interested in young barracudas while others paint racing stripes on their fins. Still, the urge to mate and have a baby sharks always prevails.
“I see some of my friends who’ve shacked up and had kids. They may be a little fatter and are losing some of their scales, but I think they still find time to run with the rough crowd,” Tom said, eyeing a school of tuna in the distance. “It’s encouraging to know life doesn’t end at 10 or 15. Except if you stop swimming, because then you’re dead. Literally.”