Inconceivable! It's the shrieking eels!
No, wait. That was the Princess Bride. This is different.
The AP reported Sunday that a long-held contest was canceled this year.
For more than 30 years, crowds have flocked to the small English fishing village of Lyme Regis to watch an annual tradition — two teams of fishermen standing on wooden platforms as human bowling pins, hurling a dead giant eel at each other. But the ritual was abruptly abandoned after an animal rights activist threatened to draw negative publicity to the latest tournament, organizers said Saturday.
The practice, known as conger cuddling, is the annual highlight in the small coastal town about 155 miles southwest of London. The object of the game is to knock the opposing team off the platform by swinging a 25-pound eel at them.
This has been held since 1974 without incident. But notice the number of animal rights activists who complained this time. One. Anonymously.
Andrew Kaye, a resident and spokesman for the Lyme Regis lifeboat crews who raise money through the tournament, said an anonymous e-mailer had called the practice disrespectful to the dead eel.
The lone activist threatened to film the contest to attract adverse media attention, Kaye said.
It's a shame when people cave in to pressure from fringe groups. I would think that if this activist had filmed the conger cuddle, the video would have made it to the internet, where it might have built up a cult following. I know I would have loved to watch something this strange. But alas, no such luck.
"We decided that it really wasn't worth upsetting anybody by going ahead with using a dead conger," Kaye said. "But it's a dead conger, for Pete's sake. I shouldn't think the conger could care one way or another."