TBT: Columbus finds a Mermaid

Since I've pretty much used up my own personal additions to Throwback Thursday, I thought it might be fun to tap a little weekly history.

There are only so many mullet hair-cuts allowed on Facebook at any given time (Part of the new security/privacy rules). And since history is already old, it will in fact, never get old.

Anyhoo . . . lots of fun things have happened in the second week of January. In the 1940's the Finnish army sent Stalin packing. Early 1776 saw the first publication of Thomas Paine's Common Sense. In the 80's, AT&T was broken up into little bits, leading me to wish we had Ronald Reagan back every time I open my Comcast bill.

But the one that got me giggling was the year 1493, Christopher Columbus, with his Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria, off the coast of the Dominican Republic, where in which he writes in his captain's log that they have discovered the mythical mermaids . . . and I quote;

"They are not as beautiful as the artists have painted them"


I can just see him at his desk with his puggish Gerard Depardieu face and mumbling under his breath to his first officer "How exactly are we supposed to have sex with that?"

Of course he really didn't discover mermaids.

They wouldn't be discover for another five hundred years or so by the great Tom Hanks.

Columbus did however, discover the manatee.

Or . . . The Sea Cow . . . if you prefer.

A marine herbivore that floats around in shallow water, chews a lot of leafy greens, and does it's best to try and make more sea cows, if only accidentally.

They live about 50 to 60 years and have no known predators. They don't taste very good, so marinated manatee is unlikely to be served at even the finest restaurants, and they don't balance on balls very well, so SeaWorld couldn't be less interested.

They are however nearing extinction.


Speed boats.

Yeah . . . like I said . . . they just float around in shallow water . . . slowly. And it's simply impossible to know it's there until you've hit one.

Kind of sad really to go from great mythological discovery to recreational speed bump in just a half of a millennium.

[There is a very funny "Career of Daryl Hannah Joke" that needs to be inserted here, but I can't seem to find it]

Anyway, if she can be resurrected, along with John Travolta and Pam Greer, maybe what the manatee needs is a starring role in a Tarantino flick.

And while he's at it, he should really consider casting Thomas Paine, AOL, and the Finnish Army.

Not the mullet though.

Some things should be allowed to go extinct.

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