How Did He Know It Was Exactly 16 Feet Long and Not 15 Feet Long or 17 Feet Long?

June 4, 2009

The most fascinating snippet of conversation I have ever overheard in my life. (OK, my life is dull. Dull is sometimes good.) Overheard at the gymnasium as I was getting dressed in the locker room after taking a shower.


Gym member #1: “A friend of mine once saw a 16 foot great white shark.”

Gym member #2: “Oh? Where was that?”

#1: “He was surfing off the Oregon coast. He was just getting ready to ride a wave, looked down–the water was very clear that day–and below him he saw the shark.”

#2: “Did it have its jaws open?”

#1: “No. It was just swimming below him. Then he caught his wave and rode it in to the beach. He said that for the rest of the day he just stayed in shallow water close to the beach.”

#2: “He stayed in the water? If I saw something like that, I would be on solid ground a mile away from the water and wouldn’t go nearer to the ocean for the rest of the day.”


12 Responses to “How Did He Know It Was Exactly 16 Feet Long and Not 15 Feet Long or 17 Feet Long?”

  1. woo Says:

    Yeah, shallow water, that would really help with a 16 foot Great White shark… er…

  2. modestypress Says:

    When my daughter was about four years old, my wife started to pretend to be a shark. “Land shark! Land shark!” she would yell and run at the poor little child who would scream in terror. (This is true. I am not making this up.)

    My daughter is now 42 years old. It is a wonder she still speaks to us. It is a wonder she lets us anywhere near our granddaughter, who is coming to visit us on Sunday. Of course, the only thing I have done to her is touch slugs.

    By the way, do you have slugs in Australia? Or in England, for that matter? I suppose I could mail one to you, though probably it would not get through Customs or the Australian equivalent of Homeland Security.

  3. pandemonic Says:

    Why do you need slugs? I have a garden full of them. I also have a lot of squirrels and chipmunks that are stealing my strawberries. You want me to mail them to you?

    As for your shark, uh, yes, this is why the only water I go near is pool water. Seeing that I can no longer fit into any swimsuits, I won’t be doing that either.

  4. modestypress Says:

    The Friendly Neighbors counted 41 chipmunks on their property one day. The also counter zero peas in their pea patch.

    The Friendly Neighbors placed rat traps with peanut butter and sunflower seeds in their garden. There are now zero chipmunks.

    I will pass on the slugs. We have no shortage. I suggest you mail your slugs to North Korea. Perhaps they will be sentenced to 12-year sentences for vague crimes. Perhaps they will be taken into the bosom of Kim the Heroic Leader to sleep with him.

  5. modestypress Says:


    Random Granddaughter visited us yesterday. We had no ripe strawberries. She picked three of their ripe strawberries after asking politely.

    She collected five eggs in their henhouse. A chicken pecked her leg, not for taking eggs, but because she wanted to be picked up and petter, which RG enthusastically did.

    It is possible some day that when a young man or woman courts RG, the test will be whether the suitor can gain the approval of her chicken.

  6. pandemonic Says:

    Can I mail the lazy slug that is my daughter? Oh, I shouldn’t have said that. It’s just that she slept 23 hours yesterday and still isn’t up yet and it’s 10:48 a.m.

  7. modestypress Says:

    I suggest you mail your daughter the lazy slug to Kim the North Korean dictator. Everything I said in the earlier comment will still apply.

    Of course, instead of putting her closer to his bosom, he might sentence her to twelve years of hard labor. I presume even fanatical North Korean guards would have a difficult time getting twelve years of hard labor out of Ms. Mini. I believe this falls under the tag “Immovable Object and Irresistable Force.”

    I apologize if I have gone too far and insulted your daughter. I also apologize to North Korea if I have gone too far and insulted their impeccable leader.

  8. Pete Says:

    Why start political correctness now?

  9. modestypress Says:

    Pete, you are correct. I hereby remove and cancel all politicaly correct statements I have ever made or will ever make.

  10. I think we should mail the 16-foot shark to North Korean, and let it and Kim duke it out.

  11. I don’t know how that “n” got there. My typing is going downhill quickly.

  12. modestypress Says:

    I am trying to imagine the customs form one fills out for a 16 foot shark. With one “n” or thousands of them. I think your typing is going downhill because you are in love.

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