December 9 ~  Damfool Questions Dilbert & the Way of the Weasel

"Go around asking a lot of damn fool questions and taking chances. Only through curiosity can we discover opportunities, and only by gambling can we take advantage of them." ~ Clarence Birdseye

Clarence Birdseye

A discoverer of opportunities, inventor Clarence Birdseye (1886-1956), father of the frozen food industry, was born on this day in Brooklyn, New York.

A biology major who quit Amherst College to work as a fur trader in the Canadian peninsula of Labrador, he learned from the Eskimos that the combination of ice, wind, and temperature could freeze fresh fish straight through.

Frozen fish, when cooked, had almost the same taste, nutrition, and texture as fresh fish. He also discovered that shipments of vegetables could be preserved in barrels of frozen water.

Seeing a golden opportunity, the businessman returned to NY in 1924, founded Birdseye Seafoods, Inc., and created a method to quick-freeze food for future meals. The multi-billion dollar frozen-food industry was born!

"I do not consider myself a remarkable person," he said. "I am just a guy with a very large bump of curiosity and a gambling instinct."

Birdseye, was a clever entrepreneur who owned over 200 patents and created the kick-less whale harpoon, industrial lighting, and infrared lamps. He once observed, "Mix your knowledge with imagination and apply both."

Good to GreatBe curious and gamble.