Worms Really Get a Bad Rap

Next time you're thinking you'll go eat worms, that's not all that bad!

I believe, no, better yet, I bet that if I balanced the books here at Bill’s Boathouse, the best, biggest, beyond-any-other-bait-or-bauble benefiting our business by far – besting bobbers, banana weights and even boats – would be these burrowing buddies nestled by the 18-per-bunch in their shredded-paper beds that we buy from Blue Water Distributing in Bremerton.

In fact, if I were to check all income sources, I would wager worms would wriggle their way from their otherwise lowly estate to near the top of the chart.

With the welcome wealth supplied by worms, why is it then that if you are a "cowardly or weak individual or an individual seen as pitiable,” you’re
a wretched worm?!

Even the ancient story of Job besmirches the beleaguered worm’s reputation by mentioning the unmentionable – the maggot and the worm in the same breath!

Bildad, with apologies to Jim Croce, blathers on about Job, who is admittedly in pretty bad shape, being the "bad, bad, baddest man in the whole (darn) town" and, in his blog, Bildad gives worms a bad rap. Though it’s true Job has had better days, it’s a bit beyond the borders of being a blessing to our brother to suggest, as Bildad does, that Job belongs in the throw-away bin: “man, who is but a maggot – a son of man, who is only a worm!" (Job 25:6)


While we sell maggots as bait here at the boathouse, too, if I were a worm, I’d bristle at that association! Pick myself up by the bootstraps and move on up the invertebrate ladder. 

Actually, there is a worm that goes by the etymology “bootlace.”  Bildad’s
bad-mouthing others by referencing worms, especially the bootlace worm, is a
bad idea.  The bootlace worm is the biggest, baddest behemoth burrowing beneath the boulders of our planet, reaching lengths of 180 feet for which some scientist creatively dubbed it “lineus longissiums.” 

Linus the long-body has friends too, although not as big. Like the African giant earthworm measuring in at a mere 22 feet, he goes by Microchaetus – which if he’s "micro," you don’t want to meet his brother "macro". 

We don’t have any of those worms at the boathouse.  Although if we did, we wouldn’t need more than one.  The trouble would be storing him.  And feeding him.  I mean what would he eat?  Fish?  Fishermen?

Speaking of fishermen, we don’t have any of those here this rainy morning (again?) either.  Which explains why I had time to worm my way through this article. 

But there’s another reason, too. 

Next time you’re feeling depressed, despondent, discouraged, defeated and downcast – in other words, like a worm – because of others' contempt, criticism and chastisement borne of the conflict you’ve encountered by reason of taking your contentions defending your community to this swiftly eroding culture, consider you’re in good company.

Worms are the best.

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David Anderson June 04, 2012 at 07:56 PM
The Microchaetus worm is actually 22 feet, not inches. And Mike, my son-in-law who works here at Bill's Boathouse, noted another error - you get 18 worms in a purchase, not 12! A better deal yet!
Patti Lundgren June 05, 2012 at 07:41 PM
Thank you, David, for a very entertaining article! And I dub thee King of Alliteration!
Nic Grapler June 13, 2012 at 01:52 AM
How do worms still live and wiggle around after being poked over and over again by a hook then flung thru the air and sunk under water for long periods of time. We could look up the answer, but no answer will quite explain it except how God loves His wiggly amazing creatures. Great article David, we finally found it. Now your turn for Mr. Limpett.
David Anderson June 13, 2012 at 01:59 AM
Thanks Nic. I think I'll next write on a big bad bass brought in to be boasted about at Bill's Boathouse. Would you know anything 'bout that?


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