Two negro roustabouts at New Orleans were continually bragging about their ability as long distance swimmers and a steamboat man got up a match. The man who swam the longest distance was to receive $5. The Alabama Whale immediately stripped on the dock, but the Human Steamboat said he had some business and would return in a few minutes. The Whale swam the river four or five times for exercise and by that time the Human Steamboat returned. He wore a pair of swimming trunks and had a sheet iron cook stove strapped on his back. Tied around his neck were a dozen packages containing bread, flour, bacon and other eatables. The Whale gazed at his opponent in amazement.
"Whar yo' vittles?" demanded the Human Steamboat.
"Vittles fo' what?" asked the Whale.
"Don't yo' ask me fo' nothin' on the way ovah," warned the Steamboat. "Mah fust stop is New York an' mah next stop is London."