[Author Prev][Author Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Author Index][Thread Index]


Hey there boys and girls, this just came in thru NOAA folks (whose
names and addresses have been excised to protect me).  Judging from
the Date below, I suspect that the USPS may be getting involved invloved
with the net (shudder...)

   -------------------------- [Original Message] -------------------------  
You guys in Seattle may have already seen references to this incident on 

>From an anonymous source:

Date: Tuesday, July 05, 1994 4:57PM

How to remove a dead whale

The Farside comes to life in Oregon.

I am absolutely not making this incident up; in fact I have it
all on videotape.  The tape is from a local TV news show in
Oregon, which sent a reporter out to cover the removal of a
45-foot, eight-ton dead whale that washed up on the beach.  The
responsibility for getting rid of the carcass was placed on the
Oregon State Highway Division, apparently on the theory that
highways and whales are very similar in the sense of being large
objects.  So anyway, the highway engineers hit upon the plan --
remember, I am not making this up -- of blowing up the whale with
dynamite.  The thinking is that the whale would be blown into
small pieces, which would be eaten by seagulls, and that would be
that.  A textbook whale removal.

So they moved the spectators back up the beach, put a half-ton of
dynamite next to the whale and set it off.  I am probably not
guilty of understatement when I say that what follows, on the
videotape, is the most wonderful event in the history of the
universe.  First you see the whale carcass disappear in a huge
blast of smoke and flame.  Then you hear the happy spectators
shouting "Yayy!" and "Whee!"  Then, suddenly, the crowd's tone
changes.  You hear a new sound like "splud."  You hear a woman's
voice shouting "Here come pieces of...MY GOD!"  Something smears
the camera lens.

Later, the reporter explains: "The humor of the entire situation
suddenly gave way to a run for survival as huge chunks of whale
blubber fell everywhere."  One piece caved in the roof of a car
parked more than a quarter of a mile away.  Remaining on the
beach were several rotting whale sectors the size of condominium
units.  There was no sign of the seagulls who had no doubt
permanently relocated to Brazil.

This is a very sobering videotape.  Here at the institute we
watch it often, especially at parties.  But this is no time for
gaiety.  This is a time to get hold of the folks at the Oregon
State Highway Division and ask them, when they get done cleaning
up the beaches, to give us an estimate on the US Capitol.