Turn on the TV, go into pretty much any library or book store, browse the internet and you'll likely run into images and references to Sesame Street and not be surprised about it. However, Mauricio and Julia Handler had quite the surprise when they apparently found one of the television show's most beloved characters hanging out at the bottom of the ocean.
The couple was scuba diving off the island of Curacao recently, when Julia spotted a curious-looking 'face' staring up at her. Laughing, she quickly retrieved Mauricio, who is a professional photographer, to get him to snap a picture of what they came to call the "Cookie Monster of the Sea."
"It was Julia who went to get me, laughing through her mask about the unusual sponge," Handler said, according to GrindTV.com. "So I did an about-face and went straight to it, and worked the subject to light it perfectly to get as much personality out of the picture as possible."
What they found wasn't really the Cookie Monster, of course, but a trio of metre-tall sea sponges that had grown together. That, and a healthy dose of pareidolia, were enough to make the Sesame Street connection and turn these three sponges into instant internet stars.
[ More Geekquinox: McGill students win $1M prize with idea to feed bugs to the world ]
Although the sponges do look a bit like the Cookie Monster, that wasn't my first thought when I saw them. My thoughts immediately turned to these guys:
Yep. Yep. Yep. Uh-huh. Uh-huh.
Geek out with the latest in science and weather.
Follow @ygeekquinox on Twitter!