Who likes to gross people out? I do!
Yep. Nothing I love more than saying something a little gross and watching someone scrunch their face in revulsion. "Stop it! That's disgusting!"
But every once in a while, I get my comeuppance as someone treats me to a sight so stomach-churning, I just can't deal. And because I don't want to be the only one to witness it, here it is...
What's that? Doesn't seem so gross to you?
Okay, sure. I mean, you're right. It's basically just a guy (near Coolangatta, a suburb of Gold Coast in Australia) playing in what looks like the world's largest bubble bath. Looks kind of fun actually... BUT IT'S NOT! That's no Tropical Punch Bubble Time suds fest you're seeing. That's...
And just what is sea foam, you ask?
Aha! Allow me to explain. Prepare to be totally grossed out... er, I mean, amazed!
Churned up by storms
Violent storms often happen over the open water, like oceans or large lakes. These storms feature high winds that churn up the sea, creating massive waves that crash on to the shore. Sure the edges of the waves get white and a little bubbly. But they don't create all that foam. So where do those extra bubbles come from?
That would come from higher concentrations of dissolved organic matter. Come again? Basically, a larger-than-normal amount of things like dead sea plants, algae, pollution, and, uh, decayed fish guts. (Yes, this is where it starts getting gross...)
As the winds and waves stir up the water, all of this leftover organic sea sludge gets whipped together into a foam. And just like a bubble bath, the more the water gets agitated, the greater the foam grows. Sometimes, the foam has grown so large that it literally invades city streets. This girl isn't playing in a snowstorm. That's...
Mostly harmless... except for the sea snakes
Back to our Australian friend in the succulent surf up there. It may look like lots of fun and I'm sure he's having a lovely old time. But he's basically taking a bath in garbage and dead fish foam. Yuck. (Also, there's a little thing too about how the underwater currents that tend to accompany a sea foam buildup can bring along lots of poisonous seas snakes.)
Anyway, if you want to see more of him in action, you can watch him below!