The Immortal Snail

close up of snail on ground
Photo by invisiblepower on

There is a trend on TikTok (and elsewhere) about a duel between a human being, and a remarkably intelligent snail. Both are immortal, and should the snail ever touch the human, the human will die. Both are granted a million dollars at the start of this unique confrontation, and the snail always knows where the human is.

Now, the snail is hindered by a lack of mobility, but being an intelligent snail, and armed with a million dollars, might it be able to devise a way to overcome its lack of speed? Could it not pay someone to take it places? Meanwhile, you (or me, or whoever in this scenario) need to think about how to evade it. It cannot be killed, so there’s no point in paying anyone to kill it, but in some scenarios, people have trapped the snail, encased it in something, and dropped it to the bottom of the deepest ocean.

That certainly seems like a good plan. It’s that or finding a way to launch the snail into space, though I almost wonder if, in those scenarios, losing track of the snail is wise? How about encasing it in steel, wrapped in iron, wrapped in concrete, wrapped in more steel, and then locked in a safe, contained within another safe, that’s wrapped in yet more steel? That all then goes into another safe, that’s on camera, and you can watch a live feed from your phone, to check upon it. As you have a million dollars, you might want to invest that money wisely, and when the time is right, fill the room containing the safes with cement, and then seal the outer room as well.

The point is, if you entomb the snail, and you know exactly where it is at all times, is that not better? It would take the snail decades, perhaps centuries, or maybe even millennia to scrape its way through the layers and layers of protection you’ve erected, and you can always add more layers. You could still drop the snail, and all its casings, into the ocean if you wanted, but I’d make sure to have some means of tracking it.

This scenario does raise some other interesting ideas. If you’re immortal, sooner or later, everyone you love will be gone. Your quest to stay alive might, given enough time, and who-knows-what in terms of experiences, become tiresome. What if, after millions of years, you had had enough, yet you did not know where the snail was, and it could not reach you? Keeping it nearby gives you the option, if you ever needed it. So that would be my approach.

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