If you pull a 1920’s fire extinguisher out of the ocean, for pete’s sake don’t drink it!

Oceanographer Curtis Ebbesmeyer is a fascinating source of information. He appeared again on my local public radio station to discuss issues related to garbage floating in the ocean. For example, at the 5:05 mark, he reminds us that, if you pull a 1920's fire extinguisher out of the ocean, you shouldn't drink it.

Other fascinating facts:

  • Ten-pound bowling balls float.
  • Sneakers float upside-down, and the tongue acts as a rudder, resulting in left-footed sneakers and right-footed sneakers washing up on different shores. (Beachcombers from different-footed shores occasionally meet up to try to assemble a pair.)
  • There are 1939 different species of plastic ducks.
Comments (5)
  1. then the left shoe and the right shoe will wash up on different shores, according to this article.


  2. Reuben Harris says:

    Those 29000 rubber ducks/beavers/frogs that washed overboard in 1992 are particuarly fascinating… that must be the oddest way a science has ever advanced.

    Beachcombers.org is down but I found a story with some pics:


  3. misi says:

    if only I had read this earlier.

  4. steven says:

    If you drink a fire extinguisher, don’t throw it into the ocean.

    BTW, I suppose drinking it qualifies for "extended exposure": http://answers.google.com/answers/threadview?id=478457

  5. Wendy House says:

    I really do worry about Pete, if people aren’t worrying about his sake all sorts of nasty things potentially befall the guy. Without supervision he seems to be lacking in a certain amount of uncommon, common sense.

    This web-site: http://members.aol.com/MorelandC/HaveOriginsData.htm

    suggests that the phrase

    "euphemisms for the phrases "for the love of God/Christ" or "for God’s/ Christ’s sake"… …Why Pete? Most likely it is a reference to the catholic Saint Peter."

    There are some ther quirky phrase origins listed at the site


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