Here at FishOn, it sure feels as if someone was in a hurry to flip the autumnal switch and say goodbye to summer. And that's A-OK with us because most of the (depressingly few) good things that have happened to us have happened in the fall. Well, except for that RICO conviction, the unfortunate fling with the Estonian siren and the 1986 World Series. But other than that, we're fall guys all the way.

We do find, as the weather gets cooler, we have to watch our diet. Well, we may have the solution, thanks in part to John Byrnes, who must be a regular reader because he's always with the bran muffins. John sent along a very informative piece from The New Yorker on the North Atlantic Diet that's all the rage.

"Although less popular than the glamorous Mediterranean Diet, the North Atlantic Diet is a great option for staying fit and healthy," wrote author James Folta. "The North Atlantic Diet is more than just a health regimen; it's a total health system based on the life styles of swarthy 18th century sea captains, near-insane lighthouse keepers and stowaways who think only of revenge."

How can this not be good? It's like happy hour at Pratty's. 

The diet, of course, is centered on seafood. Particularly cod, if there are any around. We'll check with John Bullard.

"One daily portion of seafood is suggested, and two daily portions of cod are required," the diet's rules and regs dictate.

Lobster may be eaten once a week, but "if necessary, lobster may be replaced with more cod."

Most diets don't allow you to drink alcohol. Not this baby.

"You can have one pint glass per day of any liquor, so long as it's the same angry hue as the boiling North Atlantic," sayeth the rules.

The diet mandates that you fast for one day every two weeks. "On these fast days, you will dine only upon your sorrows. If you are swallowed whole by a whale, you can eat whatever you like. This is known as a Nantucket Cheat Day."

Well, call us Ishmael, we're in. 

Fishermen helping fishermen

Here in the egalitarian paradise that is FishOn, we're all down with the PHP. People helping people. We're generally in need of help and we usually qualify as people, so it's a nice fit.

Here's a good story out of the South: As you might imagine fishermen in Louisiana and along the Gulf of Mexico have had a terrible time of it through the late summer, with tropical storms and hurricanes tearing up the landscape, disrupting fishing and adding to the general misery of life in the time of pandemic.

In North Carolina, the North Carolina Fisheries Association and True North Seafood decided to help their fishing friends in Louisiana by sending a truckload of supplies down to the bayou.

"We received more than 20,000 pounds of ice, fish and cleaning supplies," Frank Randol, treasurer of the Gulf Seafood Foundation and owner of Randol's Seafood, told Gulf Seafood News. "We are in the process of working with the United Way, Second Harvest Food Bank and others to get these supplies into the hands of those that need it the most. We need to keep the attention focused on the damage in the Gulf, and how it has affected our fishermen because they not only feed their families, but their communities and whole country."

Baseball quiz question

On this date in 1968, Tigers righthander Denny McLain went the distance to beat the Athletics to become the first major league pitcher in 34 years to win 30 games in a season. Who was the last pitcher to win at least 30 before McLain? Answer is toeing the slab down below.

Fisheries assistance, redux

You may have noticed that we've had a slew of stories in the past few weeks on the various federal and state programs to financially assist fishermen and others in the seafood industry that have been crushed economically by the ongoing pandemic or had markets disappear because of retaliatory trade tariffs from U.S. trade partners. It's a pretty confusing landscape right now, so we hope we helped clear up some of the details.

Last week, we wrote that the state Division of Marine Fisheries had finally mailed out the applications to commercial fishermen for funds allocated by Congress in the CARES Act. The state got $28 million in all to help mitigate the economic damage to its seafood industry from the COVID-19 pandemic, and commercial fishermen will split $11.8 million of that haul.

We mentioned the completed applications are due Oct. 10. What we didn't mention -- because the information was not available until after the story went to press -- was when the successful applicants might expect to see their slice of the loot. Now we know.

According to the Division of Marine Fisheries, the state estimates payments will go out in late October or early November. So now you know. Here's hoping there's check heading your way.

Baseball quiz answer

The last pitcher to win at least 30 games in a season before McLain was the pride of Lucas, Arizona, Jay Hanna "Dizzy" Dean. Dean, the ace of the "Gas House Gang" Cardinals, shutout the Reds on the last day of the 1934 season to finish with a 30-7 record. The Cardinals would go on to win the World Series that year in seven games over the Tigers. Dean, who only made it through the second grade of school, was not called Dizzy for nothing. He was his own reality show, on and off the mound. "When Ol' Diz was out there pitching, it was more than just another ballgame," said his Cardinals teammate Pepper Martin. "It was a regular three-ring circus and everybody was wide awake and enjoying being alive."

Gee, exactly like the 2020 Red Sox.

As always, no fish were harmed in the making of this column. 

Contact Sean Horgan at 978-675-2714, or Follow him on Twitter at @SeanGDT

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