Being all that remains of your species may sound terrible, but honestly it's not that bad. I enjoy the bachelor lifestyle that comes with living on an island that was ransacked by humans in the 1800s.

Since then, it seems the humans who visit the island got the memo that we don't appreciate being put in zoos or soups. At most, they place a child on my shell and tell it to say “cheese” until it begins to urinate on me.

The tour guides on the island like to tell the story of when I almost mated with the second to last tortoise of my kind. Let me just say that this story is rife with embellishment, which is to be expected considering the events occurred over seventy years ago.

While it is true that we were the only tortoises left, I never really viewed her in a romantic way. The guides like to use the term “Mrs. Robinson” when describing our relationship, I'm not certain what that means but assuming it's an accurate metaphor, I would guess that it is when a 192-year-old woman becomes interested in a prepubescent 43-year-old man.

While I do have a natural instinct that makes me want to keep the species going, it is no match for the amount of fame that I have encountered once that old bag died. Visitors stopped saying “Look at those two!” and instead said “Hey look! That's Sheldon!” Do you get it? It's because of my shell!

I may seem overly excited about this, but do you know how rare it is for a tortoise to be named? Tortoises don't even name each other; in fact, our language is very limited. Our two methods of communication are screaming to indicate that we need help because we are flipped on our shell or not screaming to indicate that we are right side up.

Some say that we also scream during mating which is another reason why I am not interested in trying that whole thing out. Plus, if I have kids I'll be called “Papa” instead of “Sheldon” and if you ask me, that's considerably worse than the extinction of my species.

Occasionally an iguana will mention that I could try to chat up the tortoises on nearby islands, but I've heard they are 8 to 11 cm shorter than me on average, which is obviously a deal-breaker.

While this might not seem like a big deal, I am the product of an island with an extremely superficial culture. The island's finches are a prime example of this, those xenophobes can fly and visit any island they please but choose not to because they don't like to associate with the “other-beaked freaks.”

The other animals I talk to on the island think of their offspring as the greatest legacy they can leave, I don't hold that mindset. I think that my greatest legacy will be the impact felt by tourists who saw me and realized their grandkids won't be able to. Either that or the plastic figurines made with my likeness which will ironically remain on Earth long after the extinction of every other species.


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