Gut Rumbles

July 14, 2005


I know that some of the coastal natives who read my blog have dealt with sharks before. But for all you flat-landers and know-nothings, I want to tell you something about sharks.

#1) They usually don't bite people. But they are VERY nearsighted, and they MIGHT mistake you for something else. That's when they bite people.

#2) If you ever catch a shark on a fishing rod, you'll think you've got a monster on your hook. The damn thing starts swimming in circles and fights like hell. If you managed to haul it in to the beach or your boat, you'd better be ready to kill it, usually by beating the life out of it with a sawed-off baseball bat, or that fucker will try its best to kill YOU.

#3) I was talking about three-footers in the previous line. If you hook anything bigger than THAT you need a shotgun on board to make him stop trying to bite you. I recommend TWO slugs to the head, too. (Do that BEFORE you put him in the boat.)

#4) Shark meat is very good grilled. Cut off the tail right below the asshole, cut the meat about 2" thick and it makes really good steaks. Tastes almost like swordfish if you cook it right.

#5) Did you know that a shark can't stop swimming? It's true. They are such primitive animals that they have to MOVE to keep water pumping through their gills. That's one reason why you never see a picture of a shark with its eyes closed. They don't sleep as we know it. Plus, they NEVER shut their eyes anyway.

#6) Wanna KNOW that you're safe from sharks in the water? Just get a bunch of dolphins swimming around you. They'll scare the shit out of YOU when they come up and bump you with their noses, but they are just curious, and a set of water skis must fascinate the hell out of them. They want to know what in the world you're doing and they'll chase you for miles down a salt-water river. But they run the sharks away.

#7) I am more afraid of jellyfish than I am of sharks. If you ever get a jellyfish sting, you'll FEEL it right away. I know only one remedy. Urine and wet sand. Piss on it and pack it. Then, suffer.

#8) Ain't salt water a wonderful thing?


a big wrench, works great also.

I am more afraid of jellyfish than I am of sharks>
Amen brother Rob, only people that have been stung will understand that, you can kill those damn sharks if you hooked one, by the time you feel that jellyfish's sting, it's too late baby....wanna come over and have a Bloody Mary with me?

Posted by: Kellie on July 15, 2005 12:33 AM

Of COURSE I will, darlin.' But I think I promised you a "salad in a glass" from the Exchange Tavern, home of the best Bloody Mary in the world.

When do you want to do it?

Posted by: Acidman on July 15, 2005 12:58 AM

Did you see that video of a kid trying land a swordfish? The thing was huge and it turned in mid-air, jumped in the boat and almost cut the kid's throat with its "sword."

Posted by: Juliette on July 15, 2005 12:59 AM

Oh and be careful out there. :-)

Posted by: Juliette on July 15, 2005 12:59 AM

Barracudas are scarier. Flashy, metallic stuff attracts them. In other words, don't wear your Rolex swimming in salt water --- they think it's dinner with your hand attached.

Damn, I miss my '68 Barracuda 340 Formula S.

Posted by: Bill on July 15, 2005 01:40 AM

Baldi, she's married and I've met her husband. I don't intend to do any cattin' around.

But I DID promise to buy her an Exchange Bloody Mary.

Posted by: Acidman on July 15, 2005 01:45 AM

#8) Ain't salt water a wonderful thing?

Wouldn't know, never seen it.

Thanks for the shark trivia though, was pretty interesting.

Posted by: Alli on July 15, 2005 01:46 AM

I've seen a small shark that had been out of the water for THREE HOURS come alive again and bite a finger off when it was picked up from the boat deck.
Moral: bash the thing to death before handling.

And vinegar is good for jellyfish stings, I would tell you not to rub at the sting area, but there is no-one alive that won't rub a jellyfish sting.
It's genetic in humans.

Posted by: Henry Blowfly on July 15, 2005 03:24 AM

#1) They usually don't bite people. But they are VERY nearsighted, and they MIGHT mistake you for something else. That's when they bite people.

You're full of shit on this one Acidbrain (as usual). You might want to research how many shark attacks have occurred along the Gulf Coast from Texas to Florida in the last few months alone. There ain't that many sharks that are MISTAKEN of what they are TRYING TO EAT. Most are feeding close to shore when an attack occurs (where the people usually are) and all it takes is a pinhead size drop of blood on a human (perhaps from a tiny cut on the foot from a small rock underwater) that will draw one instantly to a swimmer and they know exactly what they are attacking.......FRESH MEAT!


Posted by: PJ on July 15, 2005 04:07 AM

I do a lot of diving. Typically, if you want to see a shark, you have to be the first of the boat. They tend to take off when the divers show up.

Of course, that depends on the area. The sea lion areas of Kalifornia would not be a place I'd like to dive at.

Posted by: Mr. Blue on July 15, 2005 05:58 AM

Meat tenderizer works very well on jellyfish stings. The lifeguards keep it in the first aid kits in Galveston. In fact, it works well on wasp stings also. But then, wasps are more of a problem in Oklahoma than jellyfish.

Posted by: Titan Mk 6B on July 15, 2005 08:54 AM

Dunno 'bout sharks and swordfish, but I used to fish for bluefish down at Cape Cod when I was but a young whelp.

For those that haven't seen a bluefish, picture a piranha on steroids. Big ol' mouth full 'o' sharp teeth. Least that's how it looked to a ten year old boy.

Anyhoo, one morning Dad and I head down to the canal to try our luck. We find a spot and settle in. One one side of us is Mr. Fisherman. He's got not one but two $200 poles, a tackle box full of shiny lures/bobbers/etc., the hat, the vest, boots, the whole 9 yards.

On the other side of us is a teenager with a $1.50 K-Mart pole and a coffee can full of worms.

(Y'all can see where this is going, right?)

Yep, sure enough, teenaged-boy hooks himself a blue. Fights it for about 20 minutes, all the while Mr. Fisherman is getting angrier and angrier.

Boy finally gets the bluefish out of the water. He's BEAMING with pride. Mr. Fisherman packs his gear and leaves in a huff.

Well, Boy doesn't have any gear. He reaches down to take the hook out of the bluefish's mouth - big mistake - and my dad yelled to stop him.

Now, usually what you use is a gaff - it's a long hook on a stick, basically. Neither Boy nor dad has a gaff, though, and for a minute or two the three of us just stand there looking at this monster bluefish.

Dad tells the kid to hold the bluefish as far away from him as he can. He then pulls out his Chief's Special .38 snubnose and blows the fish's brains out all over the canal. The kid had a look of fear, horror, and shock on his face - until dad told him that he was a cop...

Bluefish is MIGHTY tasty if it's caught fresh...

Posted by: Jay G on July 15, 2005 09:11 AM

I am a converted flatlanded. Saltwater is why I am in Florida. I have caught sharks from small sandies to eight foot Hammerheads and they all have teeth and will damn well take a hand off if they get the chance. As far as eating them I'll pass. Damn if I am gonna eat anything that will eat me if it gets a chance. But I have chowed down on stingrays which are of the shark family-no bones and firm white flesh in the wings. Tastes like shark I have heard.

I do despise sharks. Too many times I have pulled in a grouper head that weighs five pounds and the shark has the rest of the fish. Used to carry a rifle on the boat just to shoot the sumbitches. Kill one and give a meal to the rest.

Posted by: GUYK on July 15, 2005 09:29 AM

"#5) Did you know that a shark can't stop swimming? It's true. They are such primitive animals that they have to MOVE to keep water pumping through their gills. That's one reason why you never see a picture of a shark with its eyes closed. They don't sleep as we know it. Plus, they NEVER shut their eyes anyway. "

There was some PBS Jacques Cousteau type show 15-20 years ago(dim recesses of my brain) that actually found some sharks that COULD stop swimming. They found a big ole Great White parked under an over-hang. The current at that place was pretty strong and the shark just pointed his snout "into the wind" and let the current feed his gills. Kinda cool, actually.

Posted by: Russ on July 15, 2005 09:32 AM

There is a cave in the Gulf side of Mexico called "Cave of the Sleeping Sharks" in English. There numerous reef sharks that lie ont he sand of the cave and let the tidal currents oxygenate the gills.

Plus there are many species of sharks that are bottom dwellers like Angel Sharks and Leopard Sharks that sit on the bottom not moving waiting for prey to swim above it. Ambush hunters, like Acidman's ex-wives... These shakrs have the muscles in the bottom of the jaw used to force water over the gills. Which also sounds a lot like Rob's ex-wives...Pelagic sharks, or open water sharks, do not have this muscle set. THEY have to swim to breathe.

Posted by: MunDane on July 15, 2005 09:43 AM

I got a kick out of a book not too long ago-just before I trashed it- that talked about a shark skeleton on a beach that was proof someone was illegally killing sharks. Sharks do not have bones! They ain't got no skeleton and the only thing that might have been found on the damn beach was teeth which will last a long time. ( love the use of double negatives just for glee.)

Posted by: GUYK on July 15, 2005 10:02 AM

JP had mentioned the number of sharks located in the Gulf Coast waters from Texas to Florida. There have been swarms of literally hundreds of sharks spotted right off the coasts for the last several years in numerous locations and the numbers seem to increase each year.

A l study done recently suggests that sharks are in more shallow waters due to the climate changes of recent years (El Nino?) changing the tides and pushing them closer to shore where there just happens to be more people and therefore you get an increase in shark bites.

People are not natural prey for sharks. If it were true that sharks sought out humans for sustinance, you can bet your ass that a school of hundreds of sharks would bite more than just one swimmer, it would obliterate everyone on that part of the beach.

Like Rob said, they are just as scared of us as we are of them. That's why we see shark "bites", they consider the swimmer a threat and so they bite and swim away in order to protect themselves. If the bite was for the purpose of a meal, there wouldn't be shark bites, there would be missing swimmers.

Posted by: dawn on July 15, 2005 10:59 AM

When I was a kid I would go shark fishing with various family members and friends. (I grew up in the Philippines.) When we got the shark near the boat, the boatman would tie a rope around the shark's tail and then tie the opposite end to the out-rigger of the banca. Dragging the shark through the water backwards would cause it to drown. What really grabbed my attention, though, was what happened after returning to the beach: The boatman would slit the shark's belly and, if she was pregnant, out would come small sharks that were (often) "ready to go" -- complete with teeth!

As to jellyfish, I once dove face first into a man-of-war....I was blind for two days...and very, very uncomfortable.

Rob, if you go to Australia, be careful in the water. One of the nastiest critters in the world lives down there: the Blue-Ringed Octopus. Poisonous. There's no known antidote.

Posted by: Timothy on July 15, 2005 07:10 PM

MEOWWWWWWWWW.........Just as soon as I get over this damn strep throat my three kids gave me...we'll set it up! I think that it's strep throat...may I had too much Tabasco in my drink last night...hmmm....:-)

Posted by: Kellie on July 15, 2005 09:04 PM

"Sorry PJ but YOU are full of shit. Rob is right...sharks don't purposely attack humans."

Yeah, I have heard all the so-called experts like you and Rob many times Chablis. So why don't YOU try getting into the ocean near Galveston about right now since you are obviously on the RAG and see if one of those sumbitches don't PURPOSELY attack your fat ass. They'll do more than fascinate the shit out of you. I have seen it all up close and personal more than once. I guess sharks are just MISTAKEN when they try and attack PEOPLE once they hook one and get them on board a boat deck too.


Posted by: PJ on July 16, 2005 05:25 AM

Whew! Glad to know sharks don't attack people! Wonder what the hell it was that DID attack the sailors of the USS Indianapolis in WWII? Musta been LARGE guppies?

Posted by: Ol' Thunder on July 16, 2005 11:41 AM

Tiger sharks and mako are the two types of sharks that are the exception to the rule about not eating people. They see anything in the water as food (even and especially each other). Great whites on the other hand don't hunt people.

Timothy, while there is no known antidote to the blue-ring's poison, there are treatments that are often effective (total respiratory assistance until poison is flushed out naturally)

Posted by: Mythilt on July 18, 2005 09:38 AM

That list seems pretty accurate to me, and as a surfer/kayaker/diver/fisherman in southern CA, I've seen my share. I caught a 140lb. mako about 2 years ago and it took me over 2 hours to land it - then we had to shoot it to get it INTO the boat. They do swim in circles, between kelp trees, under the boat (and into the prop), around bottom obstructions - you name it. Smarter than some game fish I've caught.

It tasted great teriyakied...#4 is right. I think there was a big stink a year ago about some grocery chain selling thresher steaks as swordfish and almost no one noticed.

Still, I'd rather have the very occasional BIG shark attack someone out here than the many medium sharks biting on the Gulf coast.

Posted by: Josh on July 18, 2005 11:23 PM
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