Words Of Wisdom: “Never Poke Your Beak At A Clam.”

Source: Dereilanatureinn.ca

Ever wonder what a typical day in the life was like in Sheepshead Bay nearly 80 years ago? What might have been going on back on November 1, 1933? According to Wikipedia, nothing of note occurred that day — no notable events, no famous births, no remarkable deaths. It was the year FDR was elected, the Nazis began burning books and banning all political parties other than their own, and Prohibition was repealed (thank heavens). And yet, on November 1, 1933, the Register-Guard in Eugene, Oregon — apparently suffering through a miserably slow news day, and anxious to fill its pages — saw fit to print this titillating story:

Gull Battles Clam; Coppers Come To Aid
New York. Nov. 1—(AP)—There’s one sea gull flying around Sheepshead Bay that has learned a bitter lesson—never poke your beak at a clam.
This gull spied the clam—a big fellow—lying just under the water yesterday with its mouth open. The bird stuck its nose into the clam which was disastrous, for the latter snapped its jaws shut.
Then began a battle and much churning of water as the bird tried to free itself. The clam held on and pulled the gull beneath the surface.
A crowd collected. Policeman James Kelly ran up, pulled off his shoes and waded out to where the struggle was going on.
He reached into the water and brought out a clam as big as his two fists with the gull still hanging on. The policeman tried to pry open the steel jawed clam with a pocket knife, but was unsuccessful.
Then he drew his club and whacked. That did the business. The clam’s shell broke and the gull was free . . . with just pep enough left to fly away.

Kind of makes you wonder… where might that gull be today? Oh, the stories it can tell. That is, unless it got its beak caught in another oyster shell, of course.