John J. Clambo: First Mud

The ocean is an amazing place, full of wonder, intensified by how strange it all seems to us. For example, scientists aren’t even sure how water stays liquid at Earth’s temperature, instead theorizing that it should be solid. But a great deal of this intrigue is spawned by the strangeness of the aquatic life, within our very oceans. One of the least understood creatures is the Gunner Clam, found almost exclusively on the exact border between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean.

Gunner Clams are fairly unknown because they are elusive, and bury themselves in mud. like many other clams. Their use of mud, however, is what makes these clams so unique. Gunner Clams are an extremely violent species of clam, and frequently ball up mud in their “mouths” to shoot and, hopefully, kill unsuspecting prey.

All of this is fairly common knowledge; we’ve all heard the stories of how a large group of Gunner Clams came from the south and helped the Union win the Civil War. This is common knowledge, found in most textbooks, and it makes a good story. Unfortunately, scientists are saying it probably isn’t true. Clam-Folklorist Dr. Rex Burke has this information to support this thesis:

“Abraham Lincoln was, at one point, the world’s foremost clam-digging expert. So, I find it hard to believe that any type of clam would sympathize with his cause, and especially the Gunner Clams, who technically were from the south, and were known slave holders.”

There are others who disagree, and would say that Gunners would sympathize with Lincoln because they are extremely racist clams, and support some type of horrific clam “ethnic cleansing.” This is why Gunner Clams have the colloquial name, “Ku Klux Klams.”

In any case, whether or not this Civil War story is true, we can be certain about one extremely brave clam, who gave his life for our country during the Vietnam War. He truly was a great war hero, and we honor his memory, and owe him a debt of gratitude for his services on the front in Clambodia.


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