Searching for Laboratories in the Cosmos

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"Searching for Laboratories in the Cosmos" is a novella written by Frank Ballast, in which an alien race visits Earth to take notes for an exhibit at a museum on their home planet.


The exhibit was entitled “Genetic Engineering On Low to Medium Technology Planets.”

The aliens walked the halls of their museum and saw many pictures of a species native to this third planet. There were hundreds of photos and essays describing the various mutations. At the beginning was a noble statue of the animal in its natural state. There were two basic varieties. Both virile and magnificent in their unique ways.

The aliens would continue exploring and see abominations with excessively short legs; with flat faces or squat features, others nursed abnormal heart conditions, some were prone to diseases, and others were afflicted with a morbid neoteny; and all were engineered for the humans’ pleasure and companionship.

Of course, the aliens would scoff at the end of the tour, repulsed at such gross mistreatment of sentient creatures. Above the exit were emblazoned words which they were told were proverbial on Earth:

“Man’s Best Friend”.