Monday, December 24, 2018

'Twas The Night of The Indictment

I dreamed up this contemporary version of 'Twas the Night Before Christmas' while cooking breakfast this morning. What do you think?

'Twas the Night of the Indictment' by Henry Gibson

'Twas the night of the indictments when all through the house, Not a creature was stirring, not even the Orange louse,

The stockings were hung by the chimney in fear, that Saint Robert Mueller soon would be here.

The tRump children were all nestled snug in their beds while visions of Federal Marshals danced through their heads.

And Melania still naked and tRump with the clap, had just settled down for a short winter nap.

When out on the South Lawn there arose such a clatter, Cadet Bone Spurs sprang from bed to see what was the matter.

Away from the window he slithered like the mob, tore open the shutters and threw up that night's hash.

The moon on the breast of the new fallen snow, gave the luster of The Apprentice to objects below.

When what to his wondering eyes should appear, but a large black SUV and 8 FBI cars.

More rapid than eagles his coursers they came and he whistled and shouted and called them by name.

"Now Whittaker and Rosenstein, Now Comey, Who's the hot vixen? On Cohen and Roger and Blunder and Flynn.

To the top of the porch there will never be a wall. Now grab his fat ass and dash away all.

So up to the the Penn Avenue entrance his coursers they flew, with a box full of indictments and Saint Mueller too.

And then in a twinkling I heard above the laughter, the prancing and pawing of a military chopper!

As I drew in my head and was turning around, through the front door St. Mueller came with a bound.

He was dressed in all black, from head to foot, and his clothes were all tarnished from slime on the stoop.

A bundle of indictments was flung on his back, and I swear he had an erection as he opened his pack.

His eyes how they twinkled, his straight face so scary, his droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow.and the look on tRump's fat face was as white as the snow.

A pair of fresh testicles he held in his teeth, and they swung like a pendulum instead of a wreath.

He had a narrow face and a six-pack belly, hardened by years of avoiding the Telly.

He was lean and mean, a Marine for life, and I'd laugh when I saw him but I'd probably shit myself.

The smile on his face and how he held his head, soon told tRump he had absolutely everything to dread

He spoke not a word but went straight to work, "This one's for Junior, and this one for Pence, and I have 30 here for you, you jerk.

After giving tRump the finger he called for reinforcements, the Secret Service and FBI broke down the door with excitement.

Mueller sprung to his SUV and to his team gave a whistle, then I heard him exclaim as he drove out of sight.

Happy Indictments you putz, I hope I ruined your night.

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

First Assignment for Shark Conservation Diver Class

Several people have already signed up for the Shark Conservation Diver certification course next February and March and I am betting that all 16 spaces will be filled in the next couple of weeks.  That said, if you are already in the class or anticipating enrolling soon, I wanted to give your first class assignment.  

Aldo Leopold was the father of Wildlife Biology.  He was the first professor of wildlife biology at the University of Wisconsin and is generally regarded as the cornerstone of environmental ethics in the wold to this day. He died in April, 1948, at 62 years old while fighting a prairie fire on his neighbors land in southern Wisconsin.  Only a few weeks later his now monumental book "A Sand County Almanac" was published.  Unfortunately Leopold never saw it in print.

Leopold's eloquent way of describing complex biological principles was one of the things that guided me for most of my 31 year career as a wildlife biologist.

The book begins with his recounting of the annual cycle of the earth from January through December.  He describes the awakening of the earth in spring and the pulse of spring migration, the growth of summer and the senescence of fall and early winter.  He then has a series of environmental essays designed to not only make you think but to also appreciate what you have around you.

Two of those essays have had a profound impact on me and I want you to read one of them for the Shark class.  I want you to read the whole book but pay particular attention to his essay "Thinking Like a Mountain."  In it Leopold describes the day, with great glee, that he and some comrades shot and killed a female wolf in the mountains of southwestern New Mexico.  His words "We reached the old wolf in time to see a fierce green fire dying in her eyes" have haunted me ever since I first read this book.  The essay goes on to describe how people think that the best thing that could ever happen to an ecosystem is to remove the apex predators.

However as Leopold points out, when the apex predators are gone from an ecosystem, that ecosystem is quickly imperiled and frequently collapses.  Our class is about sharks not wolves, but in the ocean sharks are the apex predator.  Too many people want to eliminate them for foolish, ill-informed reasons and they do so without thinking of the consequences of what their demise might do to the rest of the ecosystem.  Granted sharks aren't wolves and wolves aren't sharks but the ecological principle is the same.

So, if you have an extra $10 sitting around burning a hole in your wallet go to or some other source and order a copy of A Sand County Almanac then read it from cover to cover.  Pay particular attention to Thinking Like a Mountain because I promise we will discuss that same concept in the shark class.  The book should look like the copy I have uploaded in this post (that was the original paperback cover - there are newer ones out there).  

I hope you enjoy the book and I hope it has the same impact on you that it still has on me nearly 50 years after I first read it.  And when we are 100 feet below the surface next March looking at Tiger Sharks and Lemon's, try thinking like a mountain while you put all the puzzle pieces together.