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Blacktip Island Weather

sunday oct 31

Sunday, October 31, 2021

Temperature: 78

Humidity 62%

Precipitation – Not a chance

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It’s Take a Dugong to Work Day

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Crab-Evolution Phobia Sweeps Blacktip Island

crab people

Recent internet accounts of carcinization have Blacktip Island residents concerned friends and neighbors might rapidly morph into crabs. (photo by Wendy Beaufort/BTT staff)

Recent news stories regarding carcinization—the convergent evolution of some species into crab-like forms—have Blacktip Island residents on edge this week, worried friends and neighbors might become crabs.

“Started with a special on one of those science channels, then it popped up all over the internet,” Linford Blenny said. “That’s when folks started noticing. Everything in nature eventually turns into a crab. It’s an evolutionary advantage. It’s happened in at least five different waves. That we know about.

“Thing is, what happens when people around you turn?” Blenny said. “Could be anyone, anywhere. Some Blacktippers already have a crabby look about them. Already changing. What’s that mean for the rest of us? Am I gonna turn into a crab? These’re scary times.”

Some residents weren’t surprised by the news.

“Happens here all the time, you just don’t hear about it,” Leigh Shore said. “Starts with fingertips and toes and spreads out. Crabs run the island, y’know. Land crabs take care of things topside, clinging channel crabs rule underwater. It’s spooky, but a good thing long term. Keeps the island clean. And you see those red crabs on the road, you know a hurricane’s coming. Antonio Fletcher? He’s a crab.”

Fletcher confirmed the claim.

“It’s true. Been a crab for years now,” he said. “Got to have a hard shell to survive on this island. Insults bounce right off me, and I can hunker down in any strong wind. Always know when a big storm’s coming, too. I give folks the warnings, use my evolutionary advantage for good.”

Others refuted the idea.

“Carcinization involves certain decapod crustaceans evolving into crabs, not people turning into crabs,” Tiperon University-Blacktip marine science professor Goby Graysby said. “If ‘Tonio’s a crab, why does he not look like one? And how can he talk? He’s quite plainly a person. A crazy person, but a person.”

Fletcher stood by his assertion.

“Those who have eyes can see,” he said. “Can’t argue with people who don’t want to hear the truth. Goby’s got a right to his opinion. I got a right to be a crab. And I’m not telling him who the other crab people are. Won’t let him mock them like he does me.

“And if people can’t become crabs, what about Harry Bottoms?” Fletcher said. “He turned all flat and hard-shell and crawled into the booby pond last year. You can see him when the water gets low in the dry season, scuttling around out there like the king of the pond.”

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Wednes . . . er . . . Dolphin Day. Yay!

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SoCal dolphins know they’re cool

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Blacktip Island Weather

sunday oct 10

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Temperature: 82

Humidity 59%

Precipitation – Not happening

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Scroll Links Blacktip Settlers to Roanoke Island’s Lost Colony

Roanoke island

An artist’s rendition of the relief expedition reaching the abandoned ‘lost colony’ on Roanoke Island, N.C. in 1590. A recently-discovered scroll indicates the colonists relocated to Blacktip Island in the late 1580s. (illustration by Smithson Altschul)

A newly-discovered iguana-hide scroll, found while excavating the crypt of Blacktip Island’s original church, claims the tropical island’s original settlers were the remnants of the Lost Colony of Roanoke Island in North Carolina, which disappeared in 1590, island historians said Thursday.

“It’s one of the biggest mysteries in North American history,” Blacktip Island resident historian Smithson Altschul said. “John White founded the colony with 115 people, went back to England for supplies, and when he got back, the colony had vanished, including little Virginia Dare, the first English child born in North America.

“The only clue was ‘Croatoan’ scratched on a fence post,” Altschul said. “Leading theories are the colonists were killed by hostile natives, Spaniards or disease, but now we know the truth. This hide proves they came here. The scroll says food ran short and enemies were closing in, so they set sail in what boats they had. A hurricane blew them here. And most people don’t know it, but ‘Croatoan’ is actually the Middle English word for ‘Blacktip.’”

Many locals were not surprised by the discovery.

“Old timers always talked about their ancestors being English castaways way back when,” Antonio Fletcher said. “Most Blacktippers, we got that look about us. And there’s all the people on this island named Virginia. And Dare. And you think it’s coincidence the Ballyhoo’s run by ol’ Croatoan Bottoms?

“Found old pottery, too, around that crypt,” Fletcher said. “That seals the deal. No evidence up in North Carolina, ‘cause we got it all here, where they came to be safe from indians and Spaniards. Never took up with friendly natives on Hatteras. Settled here with friendly Blacktippers instead.”

Others questioned the findings.

“The only indication of the Roanoke settlers migrating to Blacktip is a single scroll of questionable provenance,” Tiperon Univesity-Blacktip archeology professor Lucille Ray said. “It’s on an old hide, yes, but the writing is in 20th-Century cursive. And the pottery looks more like broken flower pots. It’s an interesting story, but there’s no actual proof.

“It’s also a convenient coincidence that Smithson’s in the middle of raising money for museum improvements right now,” Ray said. “An announcement like this is exciting, sure, and it’ll also open a lot of wallets.”

Altschul denied the allegations.

“I’m a serious historian and would never perpetuate a hoax. Not like this,” he said. “This is the find of a lifetime. Lucille’s just jealous and trying to piss on my charcoal. This discovery is a proud day for all of Blacktip. We should be celebrating it together, not picking at each other.”

The manuscript will be on display at the Blacktip Island Heritage Museum for the next month, and available for public viewing for an addition $5 fee. ‘Croatoan’ mugs, caps and t-shirts will be available in the museum gift shop.

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Blacktip Island Author Releases Newest Novel

SRF cover 3-D

Tim W. Jackson’s latest humor novel, The Secret of Rosalita Flats, was released this morning. (cover art courtesy of Ebook Launch)

Local award-winning author Tim W. Jackson today released his second Blacktip Island novel, The Secret of Rosalita Flats, via all major book distributors, his personal website and Cracked Spines, the small Caribbean island’s independent bookstore.

According to the publisher, ‘The Secret of Roslita Flats follows a man trying to sell a football-shaped house he inherited, while dodging Blacktip Island’s quirky collection of con artists, smugglers and ne’er-do-wells. There’s also the matter of sharks showing up every time he gets in the water. If he can’t figure out what his dad was mixed up in, he may be stuck on the little rock forever.’

“It’s a comic mystery for anyone who’s ever dreamed of chucking it all and running off to the Caribbean,” Jackson said. “If Northern Exposure knocked up Margaritaville, their kid would be The Secret of Roslita Flats.”

Early reviewers praised the novel.

The Manhattan Book Review said, “The Secret of Rosalita Flats is a humorous, slow-burn mystery that will consume the reader. The dialogue is sharp and clever, the action timely.” Reader Views said, “From the first few sentences, Jackson’s sense of humor hooks you, and you know it’s going to be a fun ride.”

Local reaction was less glowing.

“He’s got some nerve, calling us ne’er-do-wells,” divemaster Alison Diesel said. “He’s the quirky one. Because of him, the whole world thinks we’re a bunch bat-shit yahoos. It’s totally bogus, him keeping on writing smack about us.”

Others were more pointed.

I’m gonna release that book. Right upside his head,” Dermott Bottoms said. “Warned him about writing another one, making me look bad, but he didn’t listen. This time, he’s gonna look bad after I’m finished with him.”

The novel’s first chapter is available as a free download via The Blacktip Times and on Jackson’s website.

The Secret of Rosalita Flats is available for purchase at:

Amazon

Apple Books

Smashwords

timwjackson.com

Jackson will host a launch party tonight at Eagle Ray Cove, with free drinks and music by island supergroup Qu’Est-Ce Que F*ck Que C’est, formed this week by former members of Blacktip Island bands The Social Morays, TURTLE!!! And Young Jacques and the Double Hose.

A portion of the proceeds from all Blacktip Island novel and short story sales goes to the Coral Reef Alliance.

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Blacktip Island Author Releases New Humor Novel

Blacktip Island cover

Tim W. Jackson’s humor novel, Blacktip Island, was released Saturday.

Local award-winning author Tim W. Jackson Saturday released his second novel, Blacktip Island, via all major book distributors and his personal website.

Blacktip Island follows a bumbling embezzler who runs off to the Caribbean, a step ahead of the Feds and desperate to start life over as an anonymous divemaster in a tropical paradise. On Blacktip Island, though, he quickly discovers ‘tropics’ doesn’t mean ‘paradise,’ and rookie boat hands stick out like a reef at low tide.

“It’s a rollicking comedy for anyone who’s ever dreamed of trading the rat race for an exotic tropical locale,” Jackson said. “If Margaritaville and Northern Exposure had a love child, they’d call it Blacktip Island.

Early reviewers praised the novel.

The San Francisco Book Review said, “Five Stars. Blacktip Island’s storyline gets readers hooked, and the characters take this book to another level.” The Portland Book Review called Blacktip Island, “fun and funny, its characters vivid. Take your time and dive into this adventurous story.” IndieReader said, “Jackson has a strong voice that makes for an entertaining read from beginning to end.”

The novel’s first chapter is available as a free download below The Blacktip Times’ “World News” section and on the author’s website.

Blacktip Island is available for purchase at:

Amazon

iBooks

Smashwords

timwjackson.com

A portion of all proceeds from Blacktip Island go to the Nature Conservancy’s Coral Reef Preservation Fund.

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New Dinosaur Species Discovered On Blacktip Island

blacktiposaurus

The partial skeleton of the recently discovered Blacktiposaurus lies exposed in geologic sediment scientists have identified as from the early Flirtaceous period. The creature may be the missing link between extinct reptiles and modern birds. (photo courtesy of Ernesto Mojarra)

Two Blacktip Island hikers exploring the island’s rugged interior Wednesday discovered the fossilized remains of what experts believe is a new species of dinosaur linking the ancient reptiles to modern aquatic birds.

“We were fell-walking up on the bluff, and the nesting kingbirds kept dive bombing us, pecking at our heads,” divemaster Lee Helm said. “It was miserable. We were picking up stones to throw at them when Alison noticed an odd-looking pattern in the limestone.”

“You could totally tell it was something, or a couple of things all mooshed up together,” boat captain Alison Diesel said. “It took a few seconds to register. The thing’s about the size of a medium-sized goat.”

Specialists rushed to confirm the pair’s find.

“It’s pretty unbelievable, frankly,” said Ernesto Mojarra, head of Tiperon University-Blacktip’s paleontology department. “The skeleton shows a unique mix of reptilian scales and claws as well as avian feathers and beak structure. We’re calling it Blacktiposaurus.

“Preliminary guess, the creature was flightless, though a strong swimmer, and looked something like our modern booby birds, but with spines down its back,” Mojarra said. “With so many boobies and iguanas on Blacktip Island, this could be a common ancestor.”

Some locals were skeptical.

“The only dinosaurs anyone’s likely to find on Blacktip are at the bottom of a rum bottle,” the Reverend Pierre Grunt said. “Iguanas and boobies have always been here. In Earth’s 6,000-year history, nothing’s ever evolved on this island. Except drug-resistant social diseases.”

Others were eager to preserve the fossil for future study.

Blacktiposaurus rests in the sedimentary strata just above the K-T layer that marks the end of the Cretaceous period,” TU-B geologist Christina Grasby said. “With the bones smack on top of all that iridium-enriched dust and tektite spheres, this is the first evidence of saurian life surviving into the early Flirtaceous period following the Chicxulub asteroid impact in the Yucatan.”

Island entrepreneurs are backing the preservation efforts as well.

“That thing-gummy’s a gold mine,” said local businessman Rich Skerritt. “People’ll pay to see it, and they’ll pay more to watch Ernesto and his buddies fiddle with it. Excavate it. Whatever.

“An outdoor interactive museum is a natural, where folks can watch the dig,” Skerritt said. “Something tasteful. Then throw in food and beverage concessions, a gift shop, a couple of roller coasters, Blacktip’ll be a must-visit Caribbean destination in no time.”

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