For one unlucky beachgoer, it is no laughing matter.
The Holmes Beach Police Department is looking for the owner of a prosthetic ear found on Manatee Public Beach during this past weekend's World's Strongest Man competition.
Police posted two photos of the ear on its Facebook page, seeking help from anyone who might know the owner.
The post elicited the usual puns — "keep an ear out," "what an earful," "how earresponsible" — and a handful of Vincent van Gogh and Mike Tyson memes.
But most commenters seemed truly concerned about the person who might be missing the ear. One responder said he was born without an ear. A couple of others said they have children with microtia, a congenital deformity where the outer ear is underdeveloped.
One went to the trouble of looking up the price of a replacement — between $4,000 to $8,000.
Most useful, perhaps, a few pointed out that prosthetics often have an ID number, which would allow police to contact the manufacturer, who could then help identify the owner.
There is an easier way to do that, however. Anyone who knows the identity of the owner is asked to contact the Holmes Beach Police Department at (941) 708-5807.