Melting glaciers. Rising sea levels. Extinction of species. Destruction of ecosystems. Right-wing bloviating. All of these things are unfortunate after-effects of climate change.

(Ed. note: “climate change” is the thing that we used to call “global warming.” We had to change the name because some jackass with a 6th-grade education said “But I don’t feel warmer!” and everyone incredulously agreed with him, to the exasperation of people who comprehend facts.)

But that’s not all. There’s one more way that climate change is screwing everything up for us: fucking sharks. Warmer ocean temperatures are leading to more sharks living further north than they had ever lived before.  Great. Just when I had begun to appreciate living in a place that’s cold and urban-sprawly enough to be inhospitable to large predators.

He's right behind me, isn't he?

I can deal with the coyotes – because I learned from television that if they try to attack me then they will be thwarted by faulty Acme products – and everyone knows that the next most dangerous animal in Southie is the crab rangoon at Nanning Wok. Having to worry about getting my leg gnawed off by a large, confused, probably slightly intoxicated fish at M Street Beach, however, is the last thing I need. In light of that, I’ve done some research which I’d like to share with you now.

How to Fend Off a Shark in 5 Easy Steps, by Staker, Southie Expert on Asshole Fish

  • Step 1: Relax

You may remember that this was also the first step in getting through final exams.  That is no accident: fending off a shark is just like fending off a final exam, if you replace “having the shakes from caffeine” with “having serious lacerations to your head, face, neck, and abdomen.”

  • Step 2: Stop Bleeding

In the event of a shark attack, it is very important that you try not to bleed so much.  Not only does bleeding make you die, but it can attract other sharks.  If there’s one thing that’s worse than having to fight a shark, it’s having two sharks fight over you.  Awkward!

  • Step 3: Have a Harpoon Gun

Arguably, this is the most critical step.  If you do not have a harpoon gun at the time of the shark attack, then you will have to find some other way to shoot the shark in the face and escape.

  • Step 4: Level With Him

The shark most likely thinks you are a seal.  Try to reason with him.  “Excuse me,” you might say, “but I think you may have the wrong organism.  Check out this opposable thumb.”  Note: this will only work if the shark speaks English.  Most sharks speak Mexican.

  • Step 5: If in Doubt, Pee

Sharks hate that.