We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
You don't need to open a restaurant. You can be a seafood farm entrepreneur.
Natural marshes no longer support the markets for Littleneck Clams and Atlantic Oysters - especially the delicious Wellfleets. These tasty mollusks have to be farmed, but it's not very hard work.
You buy the seed from a clam or oyster nursery, protect them from gulls and whelks, and harvest them at low tide in your pick-up truck as the orders come in. You plant them, nature grows them on plankton. Sometimes you have to rake mud off the oyster bins.
The small producer I chatted with out on the flats at low tide has around 1,000,000 clams growing right now, at various stages of development. These are 30 cents each, wholesale.
He has around 500,000 Wellfleet Oysters growing, at around 70 cents each, wholesale. That's a nice little inventory, but a bad hurricane or winter storm can obliterate your investment so it is best to save your profits for hard times. That is intelligent, no matter what you do for a living. I don't think you can buy insurance for clam beds or most other sorts of income.
In his spare time, he was a three-term First Selectman of Wellfleet "until he finished what he wanted to get done," as a local friend said. It's always wonderful to me to see how unskilled Americans without any higher ed can find good ways to make a living.
Cranky, laconic old Cape Codder. I said I was curious about how he did this, and he replied "I don't know. Been doing this for 50 years. I still don't know what I am doing" as he lit up a fresh Marlboro.
Those orange mats on the right are what they protect the baby clams with. Clams live in the mud. Each year, new seed clams to burrow in the mud under a new mat. Usually harvestable in 3 years.
The oysters grow in the wire bins. Those beehive cannisters collect oyster larvae, to reduce his costs of buying seed oysters.
Shellfish guys out on the flats with their trucks at low tide in Wellfleet Harbor. The most difficult barrier to entry in this line of work is obtaining rights to areas of mudflat. Waterfront landowners own the flats out to 200 yards.