Beginning around rush hour on Wednesday, eyewitness reports of a dolphin swimming around New York's East River started trickling in on Twitter. Before noon, local news teams were on the scene at FDR drive. As of Wednesday around 3p.m., he (or she? Dolphins are boys, right?) was still there, swimming around in circles, distracting everyone when they should be watching their afternoon stories.
The dolphin doesn't appear to be sick or injured. The NYPD, the Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research and Preservation, and the National Marine Fisheries Service are all monitoring the dolphin and consulting one another to determine if it needs help.
Dolphins in New York waters are nothing new. In January, a sick dolphin swam into Brooklyn's Gowanus canal, where it proceeded to flail around for a few hours, before dying. Last summer, there was one in the Hudson.
Dolphins. Stop coming to New York City.
You come here, half in the bag, sick, or both and you make a big scene, bopping around our rivers and canals and bathroom sinks like "Ohhhh do you guys, seeeee me? Over here, I'm a dolllllphin!" Everyone freaks out. Everyone looks for a picture of you, even though all dolphins look the same and all dolphins shot from far away with grainy cell-phone cameras EXTRA look the same. Everyone watches to see what happens next, even though it will be (best case) very boring or (worst case) a sad meditation on the frailty of life. Then, after you've swum around lost for a couple hours ("Do I have to have a ticket for Saturday Night Live or can I just goooooo?"), we either send a couple cops out to remove you from our waterways or you get totally freaked out and die. Either way, we look like the assholes who couldn't take care of a dolphin.
And you know what? We are those assholes. We don't know how to take care of a dolphin. Like, what do you eat? You're a mammal but you're kind of like a fish AND you have teeth so…bread? Should we give you water or can you just drink the water you came with? What time do you wake up?
We know we can't handle a dolphin. That's why we didn't buy a bunch of dolphins in the first place.
So, dolphin, if you manage to escape from the East River (as you probably will since you seem perfectly healthy, if a little bad at maps), please tell all your dolphin friends to stay away next time. It's really not worth the hassle of your visit.
If you die, sorry dolphin! We loved you!