Sunday, June 06, 2010

WARNING: A Pun-Based Post

So once upon a time, there were three little clams in the ocean. The name of the first clam was Sam Clam, and the name of the second clam was Bam Clam, and the name of the third clam was Orpheus. The clams had grown up together in Clam Kindergarten, and gone on to excel both academically (scoring perfectly on their CLAM Exams) and athletically (dancing the clam-dam dance through the Hoover Dam). When it was time to go to college, Sam Clam and Bam Clam and Orpheus decided to go to Clam State University, where they were members of the Kappa Clamma Pearl fraternity, played together in the Grand Clam Orchestra, and graduated with Clonors.

After college, each of the little clams went on to do different things: Sam Clam went on to found a successful line of discount makeup stores, Clam and Glam; Bam Clam got a doctorate and researched neon lighting; and Orpheus founded a rock group called "Irritant in the 'Nads" (he was frontman, singer, and, when playing their novelty party song hit "My Love is Like a Pearl", harpsichord player). And all was OK, at least for about five years. Then the midlife crises started: there was too much clam wine being drunk late at night, and too many of their clam friends bought clam sports cars.

The three clams were no exception: Sam Clam sold Clam and Glam and became a trance/house DJ named Battlestar Clammatica, Bam Clam left academia to make money consulting, and Irritant in the 'Nads broke up because Orpheus, the front man, wanted to use his rich tenor voice and harpsichord skills to good use. Sam Clam was soon performing to sold-out crowds, Bam Clam got a job with the respected firm McClamsey, and Orpheus founded a nonprofit dedicated to saving clams from alcoholism called Casting Pearls among Vine.

Eventually, the clams retired. Sam Clam invited Bam Clam and Orpheus to come visit him at his retirement home. The clams sat around and went to the Cockles and Muscles, a local restaurant with an excellent early bird special (krill and fried plankton with a side of kelp, $6.99), talking about their old glories and the fun that they had had when they were younger. Sam Clam asked his friends if they wanted to go to the Spanish Galleon, a local nightclub that he had once DJ'd at. With nothing better to to do, the three friends set off.

At the Spanish Galleon, they were shocked to find that the proud fixture of downtown Clamdom had fallen into disrepair- sea worms and barnacles were everywhere, the wood was so rotten you could practically swim through it, and there was not a single clam in the place. The three friends decided this was intolerable, and decided to buy it and open it up for business again.

[Note: the joke is much better if you read it out loud from here on out]

Opening night was a huge success. Sam Clam DJ'd, Bam Clam did the lights and handled the money, and Orpheus got a few members of the old band back together for a live performance at midnight. He even dragged the old harpsichord back out to play "My Love is Like a Pearl". It was a glorious, glorious night for clams out for a little fun.

After the place closed for the night, one of Orpheus' bandmates told him that a producer from the music industry had been there and wanted to sign them up for a reunion tour and maybe even a Greatest Hits album. With the blessings of his friends Sam Clam and Bam Clam, Orpheus and his bandmates drove across town to the producer's headquarters.

The producer was one of those gum-chewing, fast-talking clams, and he explained he only had time to hear one song before his submarine came to take him to the Pacific for a meeting. He asked if he could hear their top hit, " know, that one with the pearl."

The bandmates, with visions of million-dollar recording contracts in their eyes, eagerly agreed. Only Orpheus was not smiling. He said slowly, "We can't play that song for you."

"And why not?" The producer was angry. Here he was, a man who bands around the ocean would kill to play anything for, a man whose very time was billed at $500 an hour, a man who could snap his fingers and make someone a star. "What could possibly keep you from playing one measly song for me?"

With a crestfallen expression on his face, Orpheus said, "I left my harp in Sam Clam's disco".

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