Excuse me while I take a moment to relish what has to be the most awesome blog post title I've ever composed. Ahhhh.
It sounds like the setup to a joke, possibly even a dirty one involving a regrettable ending that makes everyone—especially PETA members—uncomfortable, but it's apparently true: Dick Van Dyke was once saved by dolphins. The 84-year-old star of much-loved movies like Mary Poppins and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang described the event during an interview on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson.
According to Van Dyke, he once managed to fall asleep while paddling on his surfboard. When he awoke far from shore and started heading back in, he saw fins circling him, and naturally thought he was a goner. Luckily, the fins belonged to friendly sea mammals instead of hungry sharks, and the dolphins then pushed him all the way to shore.
No dolphins were immediately available to corroborate Van Dyke's story, but he's not the only person to tell the tale of being saved on porpoise. (Har!)
In 2007, a pod of bottlenose dolphins saved surfer Todd Endris after he was attacked by a shark, circling him and keeping the shark at bay until he could get back on his board and head for shore. In 1996 dolphins protected another shark-injured man, "smacking the water with their tails and flippers" while placing themselves between the man and shark. Kindly sea saviors also kept watch over an injured scuba diver in 2006, forming a group of nearly 150 dolphins around his body until he was rescued.
I've always believed dolphins are intelligent creatures capable of helping humans, and the fact that they rescued Dick Van Dyke—and not, say, Speidi—just proves they have good taste. Nicely done, Flippers!
Image via Facebook