Everyone knows the biblical tale about the guy who gets swallowed by a whale and lives in his stomach for a while – I think his name was Jonah or something? – but I don’t think that anyone has ever thought for a moment that this is something that could happen in reality.
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Enter Michael Packard. This 56 year old man is a professional lobster diver and on Friday he was swimming around off the coast of Cape Cod when a whale snuck up behind him and swallowed him whole. Fortunately he didn’t have to live for years inside the whale’s belly like Jonah but instead was spat out again quite quickly and managed to survive, so of course the first thing the guy did on Saturday was take part in an AMA on Reddit.
His son Jacob typed out the answer for him so that’s why some of them are a bit all over the place:
@splimp: “Was its tongue smooth like a dog or scratch like a cats?”
@bloxiefox: “I was in a dry suit, couldn’t really tell. Also, the mouth was filled with water.”
@thewayfaringflashpac: “Are you disappointed you didn’t get shot out his blowhole like in the cartoons?”
@bloxiefox: “That probably would have hurt a lot more. (speaking as Jacob, this would have been epic.”
@Flying-Wild: “What was your ‘last thought’ when you realized you’ve been eaten by a whale?”
@bloxiefox: “My wife and kids.”
@bright_shiny_objects: “What actor do you want to play you in the future Netflix movie?”
@bloxiefox: “Matt Damon. (His wife says Sean Penn.)
@TheAnnieDude: “1. How did you get out? 2. Were you able to see anything? 3. What bad things could have happened inside which didn’t happen fortunately?”
@bloxiefox: “1. Eventually the whale managed to dislodge me by moving its head and tongue, I think. 2. Nope, completely dark. 3. I could’ve suffocated or drowned if I didn’t retrieve my regulator in time.”
@wrinklestiltskin: “So you lost your regulator when it attempted to swallow you?”
@bloxiefox: “I lost hold of it for a moment. (Also, speaking as Jacob, it’s a common misconception that he was swallowed or attempted to. He is adamant that the whale would not have been able to actually swallow him.”
@Sakrie: “Marine biologist here, can confirm whale literally couldn’t if it wanted to. Filter-feeding whales like the humpback have an esophagus thats 4-8 inches. Very possible it could have choked to death on him though.”
@scottimusprimus: “What do you think caused the soft tissue damage, and why do you think your legs were hurt?”
@bloxiefox: “Blunt force of the whale’s mouth, I could feel it clamping down on my legs. Also I got pretty banged up while it was trying to force me out.”
@RocketSurgeon22: “Did the whale have a gag reflex? Was it making a noise while trying to spit you out?”
@bloxiefox: “It didn’t SPIT me out, rather I think it forced me out by movement and using its tongue.”
@epigenie_986: “I’m super curious about the sounds he heard!”
@bloxiefox: “Swishing of water and the rapid movement of the whale. No audible cries of the whale.”
@conmanmurphy: “Did you see the whale coming and just couldn’t get out of the way or did it sneak up on you?”
@bloxiefox: “Not at all. Came up behind from me, felt it close down, then boom.”
@part-time-dog: “What is the feeling of being ingested most comparable to? Is it like being crushed by a couch or being pummeled on all sides? Were you thinking “oh great I’m the guy who gets eaten today” or is it too tough to process what’s happening until it’s over?”
bloxiefox: “It was full of water, and I could feel the muscles of its mouth convulsing around me, it was a really strange feeling to be sure. Can’t draw a meaningful comparison.”
@amypalgreen87: “Did you try to communicate with the whale?”
@bloxiefox: “I don’t think it would have been in the mood to converse with me at the time.”
Wow. That is kinda interesting but I thought it would be a lot more interesting and exciting to talk about something like being swallowed by a whale. Guy is just talking quite quickly and factually when I want to hear about the fear and pain and everything in excruciating detail. Hopefully he writes a book with a ghost writer helping him so it’s a lot more dramatic. Guy needs to do better and it shouldn’t be that hard – he got swallowed by a whale FFS.
For more of the same, check out this guy who caught a one in a million shot of a ten foot whale penis. Always wanted to see one of those.