Thursday, September 11, 2014

Jellyfish in a Bottle [FAIL]

I'm really good at failing. Not in school or my marriage (thank goodness!), but in blog projects. I take something, assume it's really easy to do, try it out, and laugh when the 3rd time is never the charm. Today's example? The jellyfish in a bottle picture I found here on TheMetaPicture. There aren't any instructions, just photos, so I guess I can cut myself a little slack, but I tried this three different ways, each more frustrating than the last. If you want to try this at home, here are some things I recommend you don't do.

Before you start, gather your supplies. You'll need:

* 1 or 2 plastic bottles (depending on how many you want to make - I used old water bottles)
* 1 or 2 plastic bags (like what you'll find in the produce section - they're free and if you're prone to making mistakes, you'll want a few!)
* Scissors to cut the bags
* Food coloring (should you want to tint the water)
* String (or a rubber band, if you don't mind it being visible).

Attempt #1 - Judging by the pictures in the original post, here's what I did.

#1 - Opened up the bag so it was a nice big flat square...


#2 - I put my finger in the middle of the bag so as to...


#3 - ...easily find the head of the jellyfish. I secured the head with a piece of string.


#4 - Next: the tentacles. I took my scissors and started hacking away, making these really big, thick, long tentacles. Hack hack hack.


After seeing just how big it was, I decided to cut the tentacles in half. Was still quite a beast.


And after filling the "head" with water, securing it tightly, filling up my water bottle and placing my jellyfish inside... well, it looks like "jelly" and more "trashy."


I tried again.

Attempt #2 - Ok, this time I figured out what not to do. Don't have thick, long tentacles and use a more "invisible" string. Got it.

#1 - So first I cut the bag to the length of the bottle. That way I knew the tentacles wouldn't be too long.


#2 - I opted to use white thread to secure the head. Much more invisible.


#3 - I didn't use the entire bag this time. Sometimes I threw out giant chunks of plastic, just so my little jellyfish wouldn't be overwhelmed in the bottle.


#4 - I filled up the head with water... but then the head fell apart! Apparently the thread just slipped off. Let me tell you - if your thread isn't long enough, it's going to take you at least half an hour to form the head again, put the string back on, and fill up with water because when the plastic and thread get wet, it's just a slippery mess!


#5 - Since I was closer than last time, I added 1 drop of food coloring. And let me tell you - 1 drop is too much!


My little jellyfish is invisible. And still a clump of plastic floating at the top.


Sigh. Ok, one more time...

Attempt #3 - This time I was going to do it right. Water down the color, forget the string, and make even fewer (and shorter) tentacles!

#1 - This time I made the head first AND used a rubber band to secure it. Take that jellyfish!


#2 - I hacked at the little jellyfish so much he looked like a ghost of his former self.


#3 - My bottle is filled, the color diluted, and... the head won't fit. Are. You. Freaking. Kidding Me.


#4 - After 10 minutes of trying to make the head smaller, I eventually get it in the bottle and my little guy is upside down.


I flip it over and over and over and you can barely see his little head at the top.


I think, after three tries, I can call this jellyfish in a bottle an epic fail. I'm going to go curl up to, "Peanut Butter and Jellyfish" by Jarrett Krosoczka now. You're better off doing the same.

TOTAL COSTS: Free
I recycled my bags, bottles, string, and rubber bands. Scissors and food coloring also on hand.

TOTAL AMOUNT OF TIME: Would you believe me if I said over an hour? Ugh...

EASY-PEASY SCALE (1 super easy - 5 very difficult): 4 out of 5
I have no doubt that if I had used bigger bottles, this experiment might have gone differently, however I tried to replicate the exact pictures to no avail. My little jellyfish were destined to swim upside-down, sideways, and every way in between.

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