Block of the Week: Sponge

Have your brain absorb this aqueous info!

Oh no! We've spilt lemonade all over our keyboard! By the time we finish writing Block of the Week, our fingers will be so sticky and reeking of lemon, that we'll be the laughing stock of the office. Our colleagues will point their fingers at us and laugh, both to ridicule us and humblebrag about how non-sticky their fingers are.

But wait! Using a handy sponge, we can clean our keyboard with ease! And then throw the filthy sponge at our co-workers as revenge for potentially mocking us in the future. Perfect! Just like in real life, sponges in Minecraft have handy aborbant powers. Once placed, the sponge block will slurp up surrounding water and any more water that's foolish enough to cross its path. Impressively, this thirsty block can drink up to 65 water blocks before becoming a wet sponge. Sadly, a wet sponge can't absorb any more H20, it's glory days now long behind it. That's truly tragic, enough to bring a tear to my eyes. Better not though - the wet sponge won't be able to soak it up.

The Branching Tube Sponge, usually found in reefs. So beautiful, we might take our summer holiday underwater this year, soon as we master holding our breath. Photo credited to Nick Hobgood.

We've decided to burn the useless wet sponge alive. Only joking! Actually, putting a wet sponge and any fuel in a furnace will dry the sponge block. So no one has to get burnt alive. Hooray!

It's hysterical animated sponge, Spongebob Squarepants! Except he's copywrited by Nickelodeon - look closely and you'll see this image isn't from the show, but one I drew myself. Pretty good, huh?

Real world sponges aren't just the yellow household ones you use to clean your toilet and kitchen (not in that order please). Our oceans are packed with over 8000 known species of sponge, in a kaleidoscopic variety of vibrant colours. It's a common misconception that these sponges are plant life. They're actually animals, albeit animals that don't have heads, eyes, brains, arms, legs, ears, muscles, nerves or organs. As an animal who possesses all of those things except arguably the brain, I can't help but feel sponges are really phoning it in. You've been around for 500 million years and still haven't grown even just one little ear? Pathetic.

We're only teasing. We love sponges really! Particularly the one that could play a crucial part in helping cancer patients. Or the sponge recently developed by scientists at the University of Minnesota that can remove deadly mercury from water.

A blue sponge located in the Black Sea. Probably too pretty to be used for scrubbing our bathroom.

But if we don't take care of the environment, we risk losing entire species of sponges, and we love the environment here at Minecraft.net! So much so that every time we publish an article we think about planting a new tree, and every time we publish a new Block of the Week, we celebrate by frowning really hard at someone who doesn't like the environment. Kidding aside, we all should genuinely start protecting sponges by being nicer to the environment, especially the good ol' ocean blue. Here's a few easy ways YOU can be nicer to the ocean:

  • Stop kicking it! Come on now!
  • Stop saying "Nice ocean!" sarcastically.
  • Don't refer to it as "dumb bluey" just to impress the mean kids.
  • If someone asks you if you fancy destroying the ocean this weekend, try suggesting a different activity that'll be almost as fun.

Pass them on!