I was helping Dad unload the boat when he got in late the other night.
Dad: Not such a hot trip. But look what we came up with.
He pulled a tote from inside the wheelhouse and lifted up a kind of lobster I’d heard about but had never seen.
Me: What’s that called again?
Dad: A calico lobster.
Me: What makes them like that?
Dad: Pigment mutation. I’ve seen them orange and black like this before, and mottled yellow and black, too.
I’d seen a blue lobster before that Dad had caught—so bright blue it was like a popsicle.
Dad: The say blue lobsters are one in a million.
Me: That’s pretty rare.
Dad: But not as rare as calicos. They’re supposed to be one in thirty million.
Me: Wow. Did you ever catch one of these before?
Dad: Fishing with your grandfather, we caught just about everything in the sea. We caught six of these as best as I can recall.
Me: Ever catch an albino one?
Dad (shaking his head): Can’t say I have. Maybe you will one day. There’s an even rarer one, a two-tone kind that’s sometimes orange on one side and green on the other.
Me: What are we going to do with it?
Dad: It’s good luck to catch one, bad luck to eat one. So even though we did lousy, I’ll probably give the Lobster Institute a call to see if they’re taking donations. Hate to see a bug like this end up in a pot.