A Maine Mystery

The lobster on the license plate
Is brilliant, vivid red—
Which means, to folks who know such things
It’s cooked, and clearly dead.
But recently, some mutant forms
Are showing different hues,
With yellows, whites, and calicos,
And oranges and blues
So maybe, on that license plate
(For those, again, who care)
The lobster there, in vivid red,
Is not well-done… just rare.

It always bothered me a little that Maine’s lobster-themed license plate features a bright red lobster sitting on the rocks of the coast. A bright red lobster might be sitting on a plate, but on the rocks? (there’s even a song about it, which I did not know until 2 minutes ago.)

Anyway, a news story is making the rounds (this version has the best pics), noting that more mutant lobsters are showing up in the news. When I saw the headline, I expected speculation about pollution, or other possible causes of mutations. What I got, though, was a thoughtful and skeptical article that refused to sensationalize. The proposed explanations include the simple notions that A) technology has allowed more reports to make national news, with cellphone cameras and the publicity the internet allows, and B) the fact that the lobster catch has quadrupled over the last two decades, so more lobsters of all sort are being trapped.

Oh, this story also gives me the chance to repost an original song by one of my readers (lyrics here):


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