Health Notes 2

How lobster-law enforcement could end up costing you

Lobsters are very nutritious. They are high in cholesterol and other vital nutrients. But it’s apparently very dangerous to import them here from other countries.

Federal officials are currently prosecuting four people for importing lobster tails in plastic bags instead of the approved cardboard boxes. That was serious enough, but they were also violating Honduran law: A few of the lobsters were less than the legal 5 1/2 inches in length.

What I want to know is, how can our government constitutionally enforce the laws of other countries? Wouldn’t that mean that any law from any country could be used as a pretext to arrest almost anyone, at any time, in the USSA? It is illegal to practice Christianity in Saudi Arabia, so think about it.

Of course, the motive behind this particular example of Big Brother power gets a little cloudy when you find out that the government seized the entire lobster shipment-about $4 million worth of the tasty shellfish.

Something tells me it had less to do with law violation (Honduran or otherwise) than it did with Dubya needing something nice to serve at some campaign fund-raising dinner. Bon appetite-at least he and his cronies will be well fed with this nutritious and delicious delicacy.

Either way, the lobster-import trade has suddenly become much riskier. So for the rest of us, that means prices of these healthful, appetizing creatures are bound to go even higher.


“Bum Lobster Rap,” The Washington Times, 1/6/04

A crocodile feast fit for a king-and a doctor

A couple of months ago, there was a 12-foot crocodile in the lake near my house. Since he was voraciously eating away his supply of fish, it was only a matter of time before the geese, chickens, dogs, and cats would begin to disappear. It was just too much, and something had to be done.

So my neighbors and I hired a Crocodile Dundee type (they’re not hard to find in the tropics) to kill or relocate this marauding croc.

Don’t get too excited about the “kill” part of this little dilemma: There are too dang many of them and before long they’ll be eating children if they get hungry enough and lucky enough.

After the deed was done, I got the tail and had a crocodile feast for the following week at Chez Douglass.

The problem with this particular crocodile was that he had lived all his life in a muddy lake, which meant that he, like the fish from this lake, would have had a yucky, muddy flavor if I’d eaten it right away. But, after a little bit of research, I found the answer for ridding the croc of its mud flavor: Marinating it with the B vitamin, biotin.

It only had to marinate for 20 minutes, and the meat was delicious. It tasted more or less like chicken except, I think, better than chicken.

Now for the nutrition part of the story.

Crocodile meat is very nutritious, high in protein, and, in case you worry about it, low in fat. Compared to other meat, alligator or crocodile is also low in calories. In addition, they are a good source of niacin and vitamin B12.

So it is a lot like mammal meat- but so far there’s no mad-croc disease. As with beef, it should be eaten medium rare.