That's a tip I just received from a gentleman upon learning I was new in town. It was said without a hint of sarcasm. Apparently, despite the swift moving current and spattering of debris, one may be tempted into jumping in for a swim. Don't. I know it seems appealing on this balmy 70 degree day, but I've been told otherwise.
One thing I can be thankful for is that this gentleman reminded me of my irrational fear of bodies of water and that I can now project that onto the Mississippi River! Awesome! This is made even greater by the fact that the Mississippi River is personified by an imaginary (probably) gentleman named Old Man River. What a douchebag that guy is. (see? awesome!)
Anyway, back to my irrational fear... In case you missed it in a previous post, I decided to let the world know that I generally dislike being in large bodies of water because of my very near crazy thought that there are dead human bodies in them somewhere. Yes, it is ridiculous and it doesn't really stop me from going in the ocean per se, but it definitely sits in the back of my mind. I think it has to do with the decomposition and dead people juices. That just doesn't sit well with my very slighty germophobic nature. It also doesn't help that they were always pulling bodies out of Lake Michigan on the Chicago shoreline and closing the beach because of high levels of bacteria. So yeah... Gross.
Now all this "swimming in the Mississippi" talk has me wondering how often they pull people out of it here in St Louis. To the magic Google machine! Wow! The first one on the list just happened on May 3rd. The dude was found wearing a T-shirt and a robe at 2 in the morning. It seems doubtful he was going for a swim. Could the Mississippi River actually come and take you in the night? Haha... No, no, that would be silly. Let's read on. Oh, he seems to have been strangled. Hmmm... that seems suspicious. Wait a sec... Old Man River? Damn it, he's done it again!
I could find more I'm sure but one is enough for me. That's it, there's no way I'm going for a swim in that river. Crisis averted. Or maybe not! Apparently the EPA is urging Missouri to make the Mississippi River swimmable. Not on the St Louis riverfront but just north of it. Nice work EPA. Don't you realize that you're creating a dead body factory upstream? Stop being an enabler for Old Man River before you become part of the problem. I've seen Intervention. Besides, Old Man River is old, weird and creepy. Plus he smells like pee. Actually so did the guy who told me not to go swimming. Wait a second...