Many years ago I stumbled across a book called The Descent of Woman, by Elaine Morgan. It was the first I’d ever heard of something called the “aquatic ape hypothesis”, which claims that certain features of the human body — our hairless skin, our bipedalism, and some other things you can read about here — suggest that our species spent a transitional period in its evolutionary history living in the water.
I thought it was an interesting idea, and was actually quite besotted with it for a while. It never gained anything like mainstream acceptance, though (upon briefly meeting Stephen Jay Gould some time later, I asked him about it, whereupon he rolled his eyes and said “Oh God, that awful book” and proceeded to rattle off a series of devastating objections, many of which you can read at the article linked above).
I hadn’t heard anything about it for a very long time, when today I was walking down the street and saw a man sporting a t-shirt that advertised “The Museum of the Aquatic Ape”. I went home and looked it up, and sure enough, there really is such a place — or a strange little website, anyway. I hardly know what to make of it.