I watched one of the holiday lectures in which Kandel explained his studies of the Aplysia, a topic chronicled in In Search of Memory. These snails are the basis for a good many of his findings as their cells are quite large. What is our aplysia?
This is, of course, based on the understanding that this is some sort of experiment. Watching the siphon retract to mild stimulus the second time suggests the ability to learn and I am fascinated by the way we are made to understand it through this slug. Not only is this a device Kandel used in his experiments but, within the book, it becomes an image for learning. I think something like that would be at home in this piece, if not the aplysia then our version of it.