My husband hails (more or less) from the Boston area, and told me some time ago about Hoover the Talking Seal, once a fixture at the New England Aquarium. Though we were 30+ years too late to catch him on our recent visit there (d’oh!), I was still tickled to imagine the salty guy toddling and lounging around the same pools we we were now walking past, imploring visitors to “Get outta here!” or simply asking “How are ya?” with his famous Beantown inflection.
Sad though we were, the bodacious anemones, giant leopard-spotted ray (housed in a tank where you could reach in and touch it if it got close enough!), and mesmerizing schools of small, speeding silver fish did help to fill the Hoover-shaped hole in our gawking consciousnesses.
What say you? Are you too crestfallen by Hoover’s absence to enjoy a day at the aquarium without him? Or might you also be able to find sufficient joy in the cauliflower-like jellyfish, leg-diameter pythons, and tiny bopping spiky-haired penguins? No judgment either way.
5 thoughts on “Poll: Without the talking seal with a Boston accent, is the NEAQ still worthwhile?”
The aquarium would be fun, even without Hoover.
Believe it or not, though, I never heard of Hoover till now. He was incredible!
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Sadly, Hoover only lives in our memories BUT at the New England Aquarium there is now Sy, the fascinating and brilliant Giant Pacific Octopus, to entertain us. Also would like to mention that 3 years ago my great-nephew, Grayson Jones, was treated to a one-on-one with a wonderful Harbor Seal who turned out to have been Hoover’s “wife” and who surprised Grayson with a big wet kiss!
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Interesting! It sounds like Hoover’s wife might not have picked up his vocalization habit, but that she does communicate in other ways :)
I love this aquarium and all they have to offer, and the price is reasonable given all their overhead. It is possible to purchase one-on-one time with a seal or some time behind the scenes where you can help feed a few of the animals and learn more about them from your own guide. If you purchase this as a gift for a child, then a few others can tag along. And if you want to have a break and a meal, the food in their cafeteria is decent and not too expensive.
All good points, Sally! And (as far as I know), you’re not even employed by the NEAQ :)