Thursday, 14 June 2007

Clamming up

New South Wales oyster farmer, George May, dissolves Viagra pills in the molluscs'' water to boost their reputed aphrodisiacal properties. Government regulations prevent him from selling them in Australia but he's exploring the Asian market.

The story encouraged one of his Louisiana counterparts to engage in some friendly rivalry about the relative merits of the Pacific- and Gulf-grown products.

In Louisiana, which produces more oysters than any state in the country, industry representatives wonder why the additive is needed for an already-sensual shellfish.

To make the point, one of the farmers decided to dispatch a sample to Australia. Who did he send it to?

Voisin shipped five-dozen Louisiana oysters in dry ice Friday to Australia's minister of health and aging, Tony Abbott.

The Times-Picayune has the story.

    Charming oysters, I cry:
    My masters, come buy,
    So plump and so fresh,
    So sweet is their flesh,
    No Colchester oyster
    Is sweeter and moister:
    Your stomach they settle
    And rouse up your mettle:
    They'll make you a dad
    Of a lass or a lad;
    And madam your wife
    They'll please to the life;
    Be she barren, be she old,
    Be she slut, or be she scold,
    Eat my oysters, and lie near her,
    She'll be fruitful, never fear her
Jonathan Swift

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