Dirty Jobs (2005) s01e01 Episode Script

Bat Cave Scavenger

1 Are we walking in sand or? COMING UP ON "DIRTY JOBS" That's powdered bat guano.
I BRAVE KNEE-DEEP GUANO Oh, what a stupid way to die.
AND FLESH-EATING BEETLES TO EARN MY WINGS AS A BAT BIOLOGIST.
Yeah, they're pissing all over me.
DEEP IN A NEW JERSEY SWAMP Something just swam into my ankle.
I UNCOVER THE TRUTH.
Excellent bouquet.
ABOUT TOP-SECRET MUD I got mud in my shorts.
AND THE UNLIKELY CLIEN THAT'S KEPT THEM IN BUSINESS FOR MORE THAN 50 YEARS.
[ Laughs .]
AND I SLICE, DICE, AND MANGLE MY WAY THROUGH 100 POUNDS OF SEAFOOD Oh what's that? THEN HAVE SOME FUN WITH LIQUID FISH I'm pumping fish.
AT A FACTORY WHERE ABSOLUTELY NOTHING GOES TO WASTE.
Oh, god! It's a dirty job, but someone's gotta do it whoa-oh, oh-oh, oh it's a dirty job, but someone's gotta do it years ago, guano miners used to haul bucketfuls of bat crap out of bracken cave through this mine shaft.
Going into a bat cave for any reason was and still is a ridiculously dirty and dangerous, disgusting job.
Let's do it.
NO ONE HERE REALLY HARVESTS BAT GUANO ANYMORE, BUT TODAY, BRACKEN CAVE, 60 MILES OUTSIDE OF AUSTIN, TEXAS, IS THE PLACE TO BE IF YOU'RE A BAT BIOLOGIS LIKE JIM KENNEDY.
Well, whenever I see a respirator and a hard hat, I get a little nervous, and I guess with good reason.
Jim, we're in front of bracken cave.
If I listen carefully, there's some chirping.
Yeah, you hear a real high-pitched chittery noise.
That's the bats.
And how many bats are in there? Well, right now, there's probably close to 40 million.
40 million? Yes.
We have lots of bats.
In fact, this is the largest known concentration of warm-blooded animals anywhere on the planet.
Why do I have to wear this in there? If you don't, you're gonna die, to put it pretty bluntly.
Good tip.
Not only is it hot and humid in the cave, but there's very high levels of carbon dioxide.
And what's worse is the ammonia.
On the floor of the cave, there's a kind of beetle called a dermestid beetle, which is a flesh-eating beetle.
And when those beetles are feeding off of the guano and other things, they're producing a lot of ammonia as a byproduct.
And it gets really high levels.
If we didn't have the respirators, your eyes would burn, your throat and lungs would burn, you would soon pass out and be stripped to the bone by all those beetles.
I have a gray t-shirt and you have a fancy crimson-and-blue nylon treated rubber bat suit.
Pretty spiffy.
Yeah, one of us didn't get the memo.
Let's go batting.
Okay.
EVEN WITHOU AN OFFICIAL BAT SUIT, I SOLDIER ON TOWARD THE MYSTERIES OF BRACKEN CAVE.
Watch those loose rocks.
Between the rocks and the mosquitoes and the mites and the flesh-eating bugs You got to keep your eye open for snakes, too.
Hmm.
Good.
Any particular type of snake? Eh, get an occasional rattlesnake.
We get coachwhips, but we don't worry about them.
So, I'm thinking the respirator has to go on before the helmet? Respirator first, helmet on top.
Phew.
Man, it really stinks.
Yeah.
There you go.
All right.
Let's pick our way down the slope.
AS I DESCENDED INTO THE DARKNESS, I FOUND MYSELF ANKLE DEEP IN DRIED BAT DROPPINGS.
Are we walking in sand or guano? That's powdered bat guano.
Holy [bleep.]
I don't know if it's holy.
But it's definitely [Bleep.]
JIM'S PRIMARY MISSION IS TO MONITOR THE BATS AND THEIR LIVING CONDITIONS TO ENSURE THAT THE POPULATION IS NOT BEING THREATENED BY OUTSIDE FORCES.
SEVERAL TIMES A YEAR, JIM MUST VENTURE INTO BRACKEN CAVE TO INSPECT THE ROOST AND CHAR ANY VARIATIONS IN TEMPERATURE.
You feeling the rain yet? Yeah.
Oh, yeah.
Yeah, they're pissing all over me.
They're a little nervous and excited, you know? Yeah, I do.
[ Laughs .]
Hey, Mike, come here.
I want to show you something.
You remember what the temperature I told you was in the cave normally when the bats aren't here? Like 68.
About 68.
This is an infrared thermometer.
A beam goes out and hits it, comes back, and it tells us the temperature.
The floor right now 86 degrees.
Let's shoot off the ceiling.
You know, hot air rises.
Let's see what we got up here.
It might be a little hard 'cause all the bats flying around.
Now 90 degrees.
No wonder we're sweating.
Explain to me again, Jim, exactly why you're down here.
I know you're taking temperatures, but I mean, why why? Well, you know, the bats are important.
And because they congregate in just a few caves, they're very vulnerable, too.
So we need to keep track of their population.
We need to see how they're doing.
You know, are the bats still reproducing? Are they still giving birth? Is the population declining? Where are they roosting in the cave? We want to see if the cave is still suitable for them.
Yeah, let's go a little further back in the cave.
All right, I want to show you something here.
All right.
JIM ALSO GETS HANDS-ON WITH THE BATS, CHECKING THEM FOR PARASITES AND SIGNS OF DISEASE.
Here you get to see a Mexican free-tail bat up close.
Look at that.
Nice, long, narrow wings.
These guys are flying long distances.
How far do they fly? Well, each night, they're flying, oh, maybe 100, 150 miles to get to their foraging area.
Right.
But in the wintertime, they're flying down into Mexico.
That's why we call them Mexican free-tail bats.
And they're roosting in caves down there.
They don't hibernate.
They stay active year-round.
Right.
But they're flying somewhere between, oh, 1,000 and 1,500 miles to get to their winter roosts.
That's incredible.
How much do they eat? They're eating at least their body weight every night.
And that's why we're standing in Tons.
Tons of guano.
The bats, each night This colony alone is eating over 200 tons of insects.
That's amazing.
That's a lot of byproduct, yeah.
So, tell me what's going on here, Jim.
Well, you see on the surface lots of fresher bat droppings.
They're not all broken down into little dust like we were seeing before.
There actually are pellets now.
We also see the remains of the bats that didn't make it.
You got a lot of young bats.
On their first flight, you know, they've never flown before, they're dropping out.
And a lot of them just crash and burn.
We also get some older bats, some adults.
And as they get older, some of them eventually die in here, as well.
And these bugs here on the floor, these are the dermestid beetles and their larva.
They're taking advantage of that.
It's incredible.
It's like the whole floor is moving.
Yeah.
You know what? It's getting hard to breathe.
Yeah, let's go out.
AS WE HEADED BACK TO THE SURFACE, I LEARNED THAT GETTING INTO BRACKEN CAVE WAS A WHOLE LOT EASIER THAN GETTING OUT.
Whoa.
A little soft there.
Be careful.
Uh, Jim.
Yeah? [ Laughs .]
It's not quicksand.
It's quick guano.
Oh, crap.
I walked out of my boot.
Hang on a minute.
[ Laughs .]
Let's get Yeah, let me get to some drier spot.
I can give you a better hand.
Oh [bleep.]
Yeah, really.
[ Straining .]
Okay, let's try and back up the way we came in.
There we go.
[ Chuckles .]
Always get the right-sized boot.
Want me to take that light? Yeah.
It's like a quicksand.
Lean forward.
Get your body weight out.
Oh! All right.
I'm stuck in guano.
[ Straining .]
[ Chuckles .]
Hold on.
I'm trying to save the boot.
Yeah.
Now I'm going in.
'Cause I don't want to walk out in bare feet.
[ Grunts .]
All right.
That's one.
How about if I sit down? You can try that.
Or lay down flat.
That's what you're supposed to do In quicksand.
In quicksand.
Oh, what a stupid way to die.
[ Strains .]
[ Laughs .]
You're making some progress.
Maybe the key is to get my leg out and then get the boot.
Okay.
Can you do that? I'll try.
Move the gear.
All right.
There's my foot.
Watch where it comes from.
I'm watching.
I'm seeing the boot.
Yeah.
Okay.
THAT IS HOT IN THERE.
Yeah.
[ Strains .]
Success! Oh, man.
You know how to show a guy a good time.
It sure is a dirty job, isn't it? Yeah.
No [bleep.]
Now, unfortunately, less is [bleep.]
You want me to touch that? [ Chuckles .]
This is your cave, pal.
Not mine.
[ Sighs .]
Don't worry.
We'll hose you down when we get out.
Oh, I bet you say that to all the guys.
Look at that.
That's unbelievable.
Well, this little episode we'll just keep between you and me, if you don't mind.
I won't say how you stumbled into guano almost to your death.
Appreciate it.
Thanks.
Man, oh, man.
Yeah.
Let's take our time going out, because if we start breathing hard, it's gonna be really tough.
Yeah.
You know, Mike, no matter how much I like caves, it's always good to get out.
No kidding.
Particularly bat caves.
Oh, god.
I think I got a mite in my ear.
That was one of the most incredible things I've ever seen in my life.
It is so hard to describe when people ask me, you know, "well, what do you really do as a bat biologist?" You know, how do you tell them what that's like? You can't.
Words just fail.
Thanks for pulling me out of the crap earlier.
I appreciate that.
Oh, yeah.
That was just a flesh-eating beetle.
Hey, didn't you want to stick around and watch the emergence? Say, that sounds swell, Jim.
AT LEAST WE DON'T HAVE TO BE IN IT.
You got to be in it to win it.
Now, let's get some of this poop off and watch some bats fly around.
Yeah, let's wash up.
Another sentence I didn't think I'd ever utter.
EVERY NIGHT JUST BEFORE SUNSET, THE FIRST OF 40 MILLION BATS BEGIN TO EMERGE FROM BRACKEN CAVE.
IN A MATTER OF MINUTES, THE SKY IS FILLED WITH THESE HUNGRY WINGED CREATURES HEADING OUT ON A NIGHTTIME FEEDING FRENZY.
Rowe: IT TAKES A WHILE FOR 20, 30 MILLION BATS to get out of one cave.
Takes several hours Two, three hours for this many bats to leave.
The breeze we're feeling is being made by the bats.
As they're coming up, gaining elevation, they're getting close, you can feel that wind.
How can they not be smashing into each other? I mean, it looks like they're just flying randomly.
That's one of those great mysteries of nature, you know.
They're echolocating, so they're all emitting those high-frequency sounds.
But they're all echolocating, so you figure it's got to be just cacophony.
There are just so many sounds going on.
And yet they're able to do it.
Rowe: INCREDIBLE.
COMING UP NEXT, I MEET A WOMAN WHO LIKES BATS EVEN MORE THAN JIM DOES.
Chee, chee, chee.
Chee, chee, chee.
AND LATER, I MEET A GUY WHO'S CONVINCED That's pretty mud.
THERE REALLY IS JOY IN MUDVILLE.
Everything's fine here, Jim.
AFTER ENDURING KNEE-DEEP GUANO It's not quicksand.
It's quick guano.
URINE SHOWERS You feeling the rain yet? Yeah.
FLESH-EATING BEETLES, AND TOXIC GAS It's getting hard to breathe.
Yeah, let's go out.
I MET UP WITH ANOTHER BAT BIOLOGIST, BARBARA FRENCH, AT THE BAT REHABILITATION CLINIC, ALSO KNOWN AS HER HOUSE.
Rowe: THIS IS A BOOK CALLED the "captive care and medical reference for the rehabilitation of insectivorous bats," and this is one of the authors, Barbara French.
And we're in your kitchen.
Right.
Right.
What we're going to do is, we're gonna start out by fixing some food for these insectivorous bats.
So, these would be mealworms? Exactly.
This is what the insect-eating bats are gonna eat.
And you're gonna blend these up in the blender into a liquid diet.
Great.
This is when they're starting to think, "wait a second.
Something's going horribly wrong.
" My apologies, mealworms.
[ Blender whirring .]
This is a smoothie, essentially.
Yeah, it is.
A horrible, horrible smoothie.
It ends up looking like sort of a chocolate smoothie.
It looks kind of good, doesn't it? Well, "good" is not the first word that leapt to my mind, but it does look edible.
It actually will taste like basically neutral, I'm sure.
No, it tastes like something.
[ Laughs .]
It tastes like something, Barb.
Did it? Yeah.
It still does, actually.
I think I'll be tasting it for the rest of the day, probably.
What exactly did it taste like? It tastes a lot like what it looks like, to be honest with you.
This is the bat hospital.
The bat hospital? Right.
This is the bat hospital.
Come on in.
Yeah, it smells like a bat hospital.
Uh-huh.
Okay.
This is peaches.
Peaches is gonna get fed, so in order to do that, you're gonna go ahead and take some food here into the syringe.
Just extract it out of there? Yes.
Is that too much? That's fine.
That's fine.
What we're gonna do is, I'll have you hold her like this.
Okay? And you want to kind of Yeah secure her a little.
And go ahead and start putting this up to her mouth.
Like so? Yeah.
Exactly.
Look at that.
Okay.
Here you go, peaches.
We'll see if she's gonna cooperate.
Look at peaches go.
Come on.
It's good.
Maggot meal.
Ooh.
There we go.
Look at that.
Got to be happy with that, peaches.
You don't have to burp her or anything? No.
All right.
All right.
That's all.
That's all, peaches.
Okay.
All right.
So, Barbara, there's movement in here.
That's normal, right? That's right.
That's right.
These are the little Mexican free-tail bats.
We'll go ahead and bring one out.
And are they here due to injury or? They are due to injury.
Right.
Some of them are non-releasable, and they stay here.
She had some dental problems when she came in, actually.
She had a couple of teeth knocked out and was found in a gym.
And so, I don't know what she was doing in a gym, but she lost a couple of teeth there.
So we're gonna brush her teeth.
Sounds like a whole nother Or her tooth or the remaining teeth.
Now, you're gonna have to put some magnification on to do this.
I love these things.
Great.
So, now I'll hold her, and we will open her mouth very carefully.
And you can brush those teeth.
How firmly? Just very gently.
Super gently.
There.
And on the sides.
Brushing, brushing.
Great.
Now spit.
Good job! She's fine.
The receptionist will see you on the way out.
And we'll see you again in six months.
So, Barbara, bats have a very sophisticated way to communicate, obviously.
That's right.
Most people know that.
But I didn't know all this.
I mean, they've got lots of different calls.
These are social calls, which are different from their echolocation.
Echolocation, they're emitting sounds through the mouth or some through their nose, and those sounds are bouncing back to their ears.
Those are sounds that we can't hear.
Territorial call, courtship call, distress call, directive call, warning Several warning calls.
So, the female response chirp What does that sound like? It sounds like "to, to, to.
" Hmm.
And the territorial call.
Uh, chee, chee, chee.
Chee, chee, chee.
Chee, chee, chee.
And then [purrs.]
So, if I were to go "chee, chee, chee.
Chee, chee, chee.
Chee, chee, chee [purrs.]
" And you were to go "tch, tch, tch" That means I accepted your offer.
Means I got a shot.
Means I'm coming over.
It means I'm coming over to your house.
We're hanging out at the cave.
Exactly.
All right.
Ah.
So, into where the large bats are? Into where the large bats are.
Into your home, in other words.
Into the home.
Okay.
Now, these are the flying foxes.
This is This is the bat room? Exactly.
This is, as you can tell, these are bats that have their own distinct odor.
Yes, they do.
And these are African straw-colored flying foxes.
These are fruit bats.
This is what you did with your back room.
I mean, you could have gone with a computer office or a library.
You've got a bat cage.
I decided to go with the fruit-bat motif.
Yes.
Okay.
Great.
Let's go on in.
Sure.
And this is Zoe.
Zoe's coming to take a look at you.
She likes to be scratched right here, right at the base of where the tail would be, right there.
Oh.
Very gently.
Yeah.
Well, sure.
Very gently.
I'd like that, too.
Now, this is I mean, as bats go, how does this rate on the size chart? Well, they probably have a 2 1/2-to 3-foot wingspan.
There are bats that actually have almost a 6-foot wingspan.
And see, she's very interested in you, very curious about who you are.
Well, I'm a fascinating guy.
Let's take Zoe here.
And they're a little bit more difficult to hold onto.
Oh! Excuse me.
And so, if you wanted to hold on, you would need to hold so that her toes are kind of wrapped around your finger.
Right, right, right.
And Look at that.
Urine, guano, mites, flesh-eating beetles, bat biologist.
A dirty job.
NEXT ON "DIRTY JOBS," I GET DOWN AND DIRTY WITH THE PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES AND THIS GUY.
I got mud in my shorts.
AND LATER, I WHIP UP 10,000 GALLONS OF WORLD-FAMOUS MILKSHAKE.
THAT'S FISH MILKSHAKE.
Meet Jim bintliff! He works the overnight shift here at afl web printing in New Jersey.
It's loud, it's hot, it's sweaty, it's filthy, and it's nothing compared to what he does during the day.
THE REAL DIRTY WORK BEGINS WHEN JIM'S EIGHT-HOUR SHIF AT THE PRESS ENDS.
HE CLOCKS OUT, CLEANS UP, AND DIGS IN COLLECTING MUD.
So, these would be the official mud-gathering shoes, the shorts you've provided.
I'm grateful.
And you're gonna blindfold me.
All that's left is a blindfold.
And you decided to go with fuchsia.
I like fuchsia.
With sequins.
Oh, yeah.
With the sequins, too.
That's a great touch.
All right.
Do what you will.
Okay.
Blindfolded to go get mud.
WHY THE CLOAK-AND-DAGGER PRECAUTIONS? BECAUSE THIS MUD IS MAJOR LEAGUE.
This reminds me of the time I had to interview that sheik.
[ Laughs .]
JIM IS THE LATEST IN A LONG LINE OF MUD HUNTERS WHO, FOR THE PAST 65 YEARS, HAVE BEEN THE SOLE PROVIDERS OF LENA BLACKBURNE RUBBING MUD THAT'S BEEN APPLIED INTO EVERY BALL THAT HAS BEEN PITCHED IN EVERY BIG-LEAGUE BALLGAME SINCE THE 1950s.
THE LOCATION OF ITS SOURCE IS A CLOSELY GUARDED SECRE THAT'S BEEN HANDED DOWN THROUGH THE YEARS.
So, we're here, Jim? We're here.
All right.
Where are you? You can take off the blindfold.
Okay.
We're in the woods.
Sort of.
We're in the woods.
How far back are we going? Oh, it's about 100 yards or so.
That's poison Ivy.
AFTER A LONG, LONG DRIVE AND AN EVEN LONGER WALK, I FOUND MYSELF KNEE-HIGH IN THE WATERS OF A SECLUDED COASTAL INLET.
Yeah, you know, a guy could fall on his ass pretty simply, I would think.
So, we're standing in the stuff we want.
We are standing in the stuff we want.
Probably a little easier at low tide, huh? Yes.
All right.
So, just have at it, huh? This is pretty good over here.
You don't want to go too deep.
If you go too deep, it gets too Sandy? It gets a little Sandy and a little smelly.
Right.
I THOUGHT THIS WOULD BE A SIMPLE MATTER OF SHOVELING AND SCOOPING, BUT I WAS WRONG.
JIM IS VERY PARTICULAR.
How's that look? That's not good enough.
This any good? HE'S ONLY INTERESTED IN MUD THAT'S OF THE PERFEC CONSISTENCY.
How about that? No.
You're still going too deep.
This is probably no good, right? No, we don't need the trees.
I'm glad you don't work for me full time.
I got to tell you, Jim, it all kind of looks like mud to me.
Oh, wait a minute.
That feels right, though.
That's pretty mud.
Huh? That's pretty mud.
Silky, smooth, nice texture Excellent bouquet.
Yeah.
There we go.
Look out for turtles.
All right.
So, we got enough to get busy? To get us working.
All right.
Let's get out of here.
All right.
I got the shovel.
You get the buckets.
You get the shovels, I get the buckets? That's right.
Seems very reasonable.
Everything's fine here, Jim.
Don't worry about me.
Just lost some of my mud.
AFTER AN HOUR OF SPLASHING AROUND IN THE MUCK AND GUCK, WE HEADED STRAIGHT BACK TO JIM'S PROCESSING FACILITY.
All right, so this is This is the plant.
This is it.
This is headquarters.
This is mud city.
Mud central.
All right.
You got a strainer.
You got just your average garbage pails.
Yep.
Tools of the trade.
Yes, sir.
That's it.
All right.
Teach me at least as much as you can share.
Okay.
Well, what I do is, I start by filling the screen.
Uh-huh.
Why are you Why are you sifting the mud? What's the point? Well, it gets large debris out.
I mean, this looks fairly pristine, I mean, as mud goes.
Yeah.
This is fairly clean this week.
THE PROCESS HAS REMAINED UNCHANGED SINCE PHILADELPHIA ATHLETICS COACH LENA BLACKBURNE BEGAN USING THE MUD IN 1938.
One of these things or Tell me how all this happened.
I mean, you're in the mud business.
That couldn't have happened by accident.
IN THE '20s, THERE WAS A A BATTER WAS KILLED.
He was hit in the head with a wild pitch.
From then on, the umpires were looking for ways to make the baseball more grippable for the pitcher.
And Mr.
Blackburne remembered playing in this mud and fishing in this mud.
So, basically, the reason that we're getting dirty today with the mud I mean, I'll just say it.
We're saving lives.
That's what we're doing here.
Well, you can look at it like that.
Well, that's the way I prefer to look at it, Jim, to be quite honest with you, 'cause otherwise, you know It's just mud.
I'm just a jackass covered with mud.
It's much better to think that I'm out there, you know, saving lives.
AFTER THE MUD IS STRAINED, IT'S PUT THROUGH A SECOND SIFTING PROCESS AND HAND-KNEADED UNTIL I REACHES A PERFECT CONSISTENCY.
Now you're pushing it through.
We don't want to add too much water 'cause it will Get too runny.
Nowhere to go today.
Just me, you, and the mud.
[ Sighs .]
There we go.
I got mud in my shorts.
I hope it's mud.
ONLY WHEN JIM'S 100% SATISFIED WITH THE VISCOSITY OF THE MUD DOES HE ADD HIS SPECIAL INGREDIENT, A PROCESS SO TOP SECRE THAT EVEN I WAS NOT ALLOWED TO WITNESS IT.
TWO WEEKS LATER, IT'S READY FOR THE BIG LEAGUES.
So, what we're looking at here, Jim, is prime, aged, filtered mud.
This is the real deal.
This is ready to go.
The secret ingredient has been added.
Yes.
It's been sitting down here for two-plus weeks.
Right.
How does it get from here into the packaging? Who handles that? Is that you, too? That's me.
That's you.
AT THIS POINT, THE ONLY THING LEF FOR JIM AND I TO DO IS HAND-PACK THE FINAL PRODUC INTO THREE-POUND CONTAINERS AND SHIP IT TO THE 30 MAJOR-LEAGUE BALLPARKS THROUGHOUT THE U.
S.
AND CANADA.
Very cool.
I'm shipping mud right now.
From our house to yours.
Only the finest.
AFTER SPENDING THE DAY WITH JIM, I HEADED OFF TO VETERANS STADIUM, HOME OF THE PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES, WHERE I MET ACE RELIEF PITCHER JIM PLESAC AND GOT THE DIR ON THIS MAJOR-LEAGUE MUD.
It's a very important part.
I think a lot of people don't realize when you see new baseballs in stores, particularly like this one here, how slick they are to the touch.
It's hard to really get a good grip on when you want to throw a slider.
Some guys throw split-finger pitches.
Some guys throw change-ups, two-seam fastballs, four-seam fastballs.
And with a new baseball, when you would take a new baseball like this and throw it, it would, at times, tend to just slip, especially when you're out in a game and you're perspiring and sweating and your hands are slippery to begin with.
This type of brand-new baseball like this would just slip out and take off out of your hand.
And you're trying to get something going, you know, 90, 95 miles an hour maybe, you know, it's a deadly weapon.
Exactly.
Well, this fella's got an interesting job.
Dan o'Rourke behind the scenes here at the stadium.
What is your job exactly, Dan? The umpires attendant/clubhouse guy for the Phillies.
Umpire attendant/clubhouse guide.
Guy.
Guy.
Clubhouse guy.
Okay.
So get a business card Well, the business card would say "assistant equipment manager for the Phillies.
" More to the point, you prepare the baseballs for the game.
Yes.
How many baseballs do you normally go through in a game? I'll do about 10 dozen.
Will you go through that many? Do you go through 120 balls? Possibly.
I mean, possibly.
I just like to, you know, knock it out.
These balls are right out of the case, brand-spanking new, shiny, and white.
With a nice new logo.
Nice new logo.
And that's not the way we want it, is it? No.
No, they'll be dirty as hell by the time we're done.
We got to dirty the hell out of them.
How exactly What's your approach? My approach a little mud.
Mm-hmm.
A little water.
And then just start rubbing them.
That fast? Yeah.
It'll take me about 30 minutes.
Right.
25 to 30 minutes.
Mind if I hop in there with you? No.
Okay.
That look about right? Oh, big-time.
Okay.
I taught you well.
Well, you know, I'm a fairly quick study.
I worked hard to get this mud.
You look like a dirty guy.
You'd be surprised.
Dan, you've held a lot of balls in your hands over the years.
Yes, I have.
I have balls.
You're a man who knows balls.
When it comes to balls [scoffs.]
No one knows like Dan o'Rourke.
Now, typically, I mean, there's your counterpart in every other stadium, right? And not everybody's gonna have the same approach.
No, I mean, you know, you hear it from the hitters that, you know, they want them light.
Pitchers want them dark.
So, you know, you just try to have a medium.
Right.
That's almost perfect.
That is right there? Yeah.
Something like that.
Oh, yeah.
That's a pitcher's friend right there.
[ Cheers and applause .]
EACH YEAR, MORE THAN A MILLION BASEBALLS ARE THROWN IN BIG-LEAGUE PARKS ACROSS THE COUNTRY, AND EACH AND EVERY ONE OF THEM IS THOROUGHLY RUBBED WITH LENA BLACKBURNE RUBBING MUD.
NOW, THAT IS A MAJOR-LEAGUE DIRTY JOB.
NEXT ON "DIRTY JOBS," FISH HEADS, FISH HEADS, OOEY, GOOEY FISH HEADS.
Welcome to pacific coast seafoods, where all the fish are fresh and happy.
Well, not all of them.
BECAUSE WAITING INSIDE IS AN ARMY OF HIGHLY SKILLED MEN AND WOMEN ARMED WITH RAZOR-SHARP FILLETING KNIVES.
AND BELIEVE ME, THEY'RE NOT AFRAID TO USE THEM.
So, Rene, these guys are professional filleters.
And this is what do you call this? The line? Yep.
This is the fillet line.
So their job is really to do nothing except fillet these fish.
Can you make a living doing that? Oh, you bet.
Yeah? How's it work? First thing we need to do, Mike, is get a hair net on you.
Perfect.
Yep.
Now what you're gonna do is you're gonna get really mucky and ucky, so you need to take your sleeves and shove your sleeves on up.
Did you say mucky and ucky? Yeah.
Mucky and ucky.
Okay.
This is the cut glove.
It won't stop you from getting poked, but it will stop you from getting your hand sliced open.
Good tip.
Okay.
This also goes on your wrist, and what it does is that it protects in case you slip with this knife in a minute I'm gonna give you.
It will stop your wrist from getting Cut off.
Right.
Excellent.
Okay.
This is a very fresh fish.
You can tell by the firmness of it.
The slime's still on it.
Whole deal.
So, slime is a good sign Yeah.
to have slime.
This fish is still fresh.
You got to bend it to cooperate with you.
Slice it.
Bring it up on the bone.
You're gonna feel the bone there in a minute, okay? Hold it but don't rip your meat up.
Don't rip your meat.
You know, you want your quality to look perfect in a box.
And then come down like this.
There's your first side of your fillet.
Okay.
Then we're gonna hand-skin him.
So There you have it.
There's your skin.
All your recovery's there.
What do you do with the skins? Well, a few years ago, they were taking them and making wallets out of them.
Really? Fish wallet? Yeah.
A beautiful fish wallet.
Screwed this one up, didn't I? You're on the other side of the fish, as a matter of fact.
How'd that happen? I thought there was a backbone.
Yeah, you went through the backbone.
Okay, you want to try your luck at a tuna fish? Sure.
You're gonna poke him, okay? Right up into the head.
Yep.
Okay.
Perfect.
Now, bring your knife and swing it down into the head, just like that.
Coming in like this? Uh-huh.
And go right in the middle of it.
Straight through that fin? Yep, all the way down to here, right to there.
Yep.
Then if you pull this off There's your first loin.
Not exactly Sushi grade, though, is it? Yeah.
Why would it not be Sushi grade? I don't know.
I don't know a damn thing.
When I said hello, I told you all I knew about cleaning fish.
Rene! You make it look good.
Okay.
What we're gonna do with this skate, gonna go right around his head.
There's the outline of his head.
Head inward.
And you'll come to a lot of bone right there.
Inward a little bit.
Inward.
Now go straight down.
Yeah.
Oh That's a pregnant skate, huh? Yeah.
Oh! Guy stinks a little.
Sure it's not you? At this point, no.
[ Laughs .]
What now, Rene? This is an octopus.
We're gonna get ready to dress it.
Hopefully all its legs and tentacles are there.
So, what we're gonna do is, we're gonna flip him over.
And right between this is his beak.
An octopus has a beak? Yep.
Right in here.
Right here.
Oh, yeah.
Son of a gun.
Feel it right there? Yeah.
There it is.
There's really not a lot of difference between an octopus and, like, a giant pile of snot.
Yep.
Just so you know.
All right.
So, what do we have here? That's his beak.
Yep.
If we can, I'll see if I can get it out of there for you.
Yeah.
That'd be good.
Whoa! Like an eyeball.
Yeah.
Put your knife down.
Put your hand under here and flip the hood inside out.
Yep.
Ugh What about now? Yeah.
Cut that.
Now what you're gonna also do is you're gonna peel it from the hood.
Did you say "kill it"? 'Cause if this thing's not dead already, I don't know what the hell we're doing.
We're gonna peel it.
Oh, "peel.
" Peel.
See? You talk funny.
Now, I'm not gonna do this for you.
You're gonna do it yourself.
Oh, good.
'Cause I was just hoping that maybe today I'd have a chance to peel an octopus and then disembowel it.
Remember, you don't want any holes in the hood.
No holes in the hood.
Yeah.
Now you need to take this and just peel a little bit more.
Ah! Yeah, I got me.
I told you.
Okay.
Okay.
You're officially done except hosing it off.
I'm just rinsing off an octopus.
Won't be but a minute.
One octopus ready for market.
The best fillets go to the market.
The rest of the stuff, well, that goes Somewhere else.
Here's another part of the fish process The processing part.
The fish that aren't used make their way out back here, where they're loaded into bins and then shoveled into a grinder.
That would be the grinder.
Think about a big blender or a cuisinart.
Takes the sardines, turns them into a sardine milkshake.
You might be wondering if the fish in the grinder smell bad.
They do.
So, after the fish are turned into milkshake, they're pumped from the grinder through that hose and into the back of this truck and then driven to a place called bio-Oregon, right, Nolan? Right.
He's a driver, and we'll go there next.
COMING UP, IF YOU THINK THE FISH HAVE IT BAD AT PACIFIC COAST, WAIT TILL YOU SEE WHAT HAPPENS TO THEM NEXT.
Oh, my god.
THE BIO-OREGON PLAN IN WARRENTON PROCESSES MORE THAN 50 MILLION POUNDS OF FISH BYPRODUCTS A YEAR.
THAT'S AS MUCH AS 650,000 POUNDS EVERY DAY.
IT'S HERE THAT ASSORTED FISH SCRAPS ARE MADE INTO FERTILIZER, FISH MEAL, AND IRONICALLY, FISH FOOD.
HOW DO YOU TURN FISH INTO FOOD FOR OTHER FISH? WELL, THAT IS A DIRTY JOB.
We got 17,000 pounds of fish stuff in here, and we got to get it out.
Right.
I'm pumping fish.
From the truck, the fish meal gets pumped through this hose and into this giant 50,000-pound holding tank.
Would you like to take a look inside? Sure, you would.
Think of it as a finely aged bouillabaisse.
THE AROMATIC FISH MILKSHAKE IS PUMPED INTO LARGE DECANTERS LIKE THESE, WHERE ALL THE LIQUID IS REMOVED.
BUT THE SOUPY MIX OF WATER, BLOOD, AND OIL THAT'S EXTRACTED ISN'T THROWN AWAY.
OH, NO.
HERE AT THE PLANT, NO PART OF THE FISH IS EVER WASTED.
This device is called the oil separator.
Like the name implies, it takes the oil from the fish away from everything else.
The oil that's coming out is about 180 degrees.
And the thing is, every minute or so, it burps to kind of clear the lines.
You don't want to be near it when it burps.
ONCE ALL THE FLUIDS ARE EXTRACTED AND EVERYTHING THAT'S LEFT IS DRIED, THE BONES ARE REMOVED.
This thing's called an mvp or a "multi-vane processor.
" It has one job get all the bones out of all the fish.
I couldn't tell you how it works, but it's pretty efficient.
WITH THE BONES REMOVED, ALL THAT'S LEF IS A DRY POWDER, AND THIS IS WHERE THINGS REALLY START TO GET FUN, BECAUSE THIS IS WHERE THEY ADD A SPECIAL INGREDIEN THAT'LL GIVE THE FISH FEED THAT LITTLE SPECIAL SOMETHING.
These bags are full of blood, powdered blood.
Here at bio-Oregon, they put the powdered, or spray-dried blood, into their fish feed, which is what I'm gonna be doing right now.
THE FISH POWDER, THE BLOOD, AND A FEW OTHER INGREDIENTS ARE KNEADED INTO DOUGH FORM IN LARGE MIXERS LIKE THESE.
THE PROCESS IS NOT UNLIKE MAKING BREAD BLOODY, FISHY BREAD.
WHEN THE DOUGH REACHES THE RIGHT CONSISTENCY, IT'S READY TO BE SHAPED AND FORMED INTO FISH FOOD.
AND BIO-OREGON HAS A MACHINE TO DO THAT, TOO.
This thing used to be a pasta maker.
Like everything else at bio-Oregon, it's recycled.
They found it at a junkyard over 50 years ago.
The pasta used to get pressed through the holes in this dye.
Then the pasta used to be cut up by these blades that spin pretty quickly.
It still works.
It's just that they're not making pasta anymore.
They're making something else.
WHEN IT COMES TO FISH-FOOD PELLETS, QUALITY MATTERS.
AND THAT'S WHERE THIS MAN COMES IN.
IT'S HIS JOB TO MAKE SURE IT'S ALL WORKING CORRECTLY.
He's got an interesting job.
What the hell do you do again? I work at bio-Oregon.
Well, I know that, but every time I look at you, you got a handful of these fish pellets.
Basically what I'm doing, checking the cut on them, make sure we got a good uniform pellet.
Well, let's get a look and see if these pellets are uniform.
That one looks a little longer than the rest of them.
Some of them are a little longer.
That's when we make our adjustments.
Just so you know, Travis, your name says "Shawn" here.
I know.
I got somebody else's overalls on today.
Just so you know.
ONLY AFTER THEY RECEIVE SHAWN'S OR TRAVIS' STAMP OF APPROVAL, THE PELLETS ARE DRIED, BAGGED, AND SHIPPED OUT TO HUNGRY FISH ALL OVER THE WORLD.
So, as it turns out, fish food is really just made out of other fish.
All part of that "cycle of life" thing, I guess.
The question is, will other fish eat it? Let's find out.
Yeah.
They'll eat it.
Come on, boys.
It's suppertime.
Come and get it! Oh, yeah.
It's kind of fun.