It is a little known fact that certain rocks of the intertidal zone can be something of a dandy. The moment the tide begins to withdraw finds them whipping out their combs – often the backbone of some unlucky minnow – and combing flat their wigs of algae.

I’ve heard them brag they got the idea from adolescent mermaids and preening ducks. Others say they have to do it or their wigs are plagued with sand fleas. Since I’ve asked all I see are flea-ridden, preening stones who wish to look like little girls. I’m not sure of the appeal, but then again I am not a lady rock.

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