by Rollie Haselden from North Saanich, BC
As a boy in England often my mother would purchase cockles from the fish man and quickly I began to crave them. When we moved to Canada, you could only get cockles in a jar with brine. They didn’t taste anything like the fresh ones but I still bought them anyway.
Years later I was working as a photographer for a medical school at a university. We had three photographers in the department: my-self, another senior photographer and a new rookie photographer named Steve.
Steve had not yet done any medical photography, because one has to be eased into that sort of thing.
One day I went out and bought a bottle of cockles to have with my lunch. I was eating them with the other senior photographer at the time. As I looked at the cockles I remarked, "These look like something that has been cut out of a body." And that’s when a light bulb went on.
I placed some of the cockles on a paper towel and headed for the morgue. I knew the man who ran it and I knew that he would be up for a little fun. I asked him if he would tell Steve that he had just cut the cockles out of a body and that they have to be photographed right away.
Well Steve went into the copy room but he went begrudgingly.He turned on the light box and the cockles were placed there to be photographed. The man in charge played along very well regaling Steve with stories of these growths.
After Steve took a few pictures I came into the room and asked her what was going on. Steve told me that the cockles were rare growths.
I picked one up and remarked "Wow! These look almost good enough to eat".
Then I popped one in my mouth.
It only took Steve a few seconds to realize he had just become the victim of an elaborate prank. We got along famously after that.