What if I ate this toy?

I have before me a toy octopus. Not your average octopus, but an expandable one. It’s got the requisite 8 legs and is about 3 or 4 inches across. I’d be willing to bet I could get it down without chewing. If I concentrated. Yes, I think I could do it.

But it’s an expandable one, see? The package claims it will grow to 600% of its original size. In case you read that wrong, as I did initially, that’s 600%, and not 600 times. That’d be an elephantine toy for sure!. No, this guy will get about 6 times its size when placed in water. Soaks up the water, see? And then grows. Or maybe it grows while its soaking up the water? I think that’s more likely.

Anyway, what would happen to me if I ate it whole?

Only one way to find out, really…

What the? Damit! Meant for this one to go to GQ!

I’d imagine that you’d be one of those cases that the ER docs would snicker about behind your back. “So this guy came in with a really bad stomache ache and some intestinal blockage, and you’d never believe what we pulled out! The things some people put in their mouths! What on earth was he thinking?”
I’d have to wonder if perhaps the stomache acid would dissolve it a bit. Aren’t those things kinda spongy?

Shut up, Monica.

Winston’s right.

WAG, IANAD, and so on.

Depends on the chemical composition of your toy, and how much of those saliva can break down. If not much… well, you’ve got water in your tissues, but I’m kind of doubting the toy will be able to absorb H20 from them.

Mainly I think your toy either is breaking down or isn’t, in which case a) it goes down your esophagus in tiny little pieces or b) (much more likely) you choke.

Stomach acid is mainly composed of hydrochloric acid, with some potassium chloride and sodium chloride thrown in, so if your toy makes it to your stomach, you might have a hell of a tummyache later.

Forget the octopus.

In the interest of real scientific, er, interest, you should swallow this and this. We can get some serious telemetry back on what happens in your innards.

Can you manage a web cam, too? We can go wireless if you think the cables would be a problem.

don’t some medical prodecures already use a webcam sort of contraption?

aside from making you slightly ill (as would anything not digestable) and giving you major cramps as it made its way out the other end, nothing too serious. Little kids swallow non-digestables all the time and come out mostly unscathed.
But I want to see a picture of the thing.

I too would like to see what it is you’re talking about. But if it’s one of those kid’s toys that expand in water, I’d say it’s probably good (if not tasty) eats. For one thing, they don’t expand rapidly, they take a huge long time. For another, they turn into disappointing amorphous globs of almost nothing.

If the package says “For ages 2-5” and “Non-toxic”, and doesn’t say “Harmful or fatal if swallowed”, I’d say go for it.*

*Not an actual recommendation of myself, the SDMB, or the Chicago Reader. Swallow at your own risk. In case of near or complete death, consult a doctor.

I’ve thought a bit on this, friend, and I think you’d better serve the interests of this community by swallowing a real octopus.

Thanks for the encouragment.
It occurs to me that we are gong to have to talk him into swallowing some kind of flashlight, too. Maybe one of those little LED things.
May I count on your help?

BTW, anyone worried that he hasn’t posted a response? :dubious:

I’m sure he’s only asking because there’s no “Do Not Ingest” warning on the package.

But there will be soon, I’m sure.

Now I’m curious. If it’s “about 3 or 4 inches across” and actually did grow its advertised 600%, how big would it be?

Big enough to give Inigo an impressive tummy-ache, no doubt.

You know, sometimes the answer to the questions we ask ourselves is ‘you would most probably die’. You’re not immortal after all.

You know, when you’re standing on the roof of a tall building and you think “What if I just stepped off?” or when you’re on the train platform and you think “What if I just jumped down there and grabbed the live rail?”. Likewise when you look at an expanding plastic toy and think “Yeah, but what if I swallowed it?”.

I’ll post a picture of the thing when I get home today.

The text on the front of the package, in it’s entirety, is:
*Age 4+

  • 88c
    *Grows 600% its size!
  • After Water (* Picture of big octopus*)
  • Before Water (* Picture of little octopus…or maybe a small picture of the big octopus, it’s hard to tell *)
  • Just Add Water and Watch Them Grow!

The text on the front of the package, in it’s entirety, is:

    *Expandables growth is dependant on size of basin filled with water. The larger the body of water the larger they get.
  • Expandables may take five to ten days to grow to their maximum size.
  • While expanding they may feel “Slimy”. Don’t worry, it is part of the expaning process and it is completely harmless. Slimy is fun!
  • When done expanding take them out of the water and watch them shrink back.
  • Have fun watching the expandables grow!
  • NO.4118
  • 7 19767 04118 7 (* UPC Code *)
  • Marketed by Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Bentonville, AR 72716
  • Shop at www.wal-mart.com

So, nothing about don’t eat 'em, but nothing about non-toxic either. This looks risky. After waiting for up to 10 days for it to reach maximum size, I really look forward to watching it shrink back! You gotta wonder what the Chinese think of us sometimes, I mean do they really expect watching the Expandables shrink back to original size is going to be a major passtime?

This has potential for a “Mythbusters” style experiment…

get some hydrochloric acid, a small acid-proof container that approximates the stomach’s volume. then drop the toy in…

You know, every once in a while, a thread comes along that makes you want to get down on your knees and thank god that Al Gore invented the internet. This is one of them.


I suggest that you toss it in the ocean and let the authorities deal with it when it goes on a rampage.

Ew! Slimy is not fun!

Can’t wait to see a picture of this thing.