Monday, April 30, 2007


My bad. Haven’t posted in a while d/t my workload. You know, real-life, the other white meat. This hitch is over on Wednesday and there are many unplanned issues that have come up in the past two weeks and they have taken a lot of my time. On top of that, I have a rather difficult course coming up three days after crew-x and I’ve been studying (napping) for it every day. Its rather advanced stuff and I am more than a bit unprepared for it. A raise an promotion hinges on successfully completing it, so I have been sweating it, just a tad.

So anyway, life has been pretty quite here, lately. We are all sort of hunkered down, just trying to get through the last week of the trip and steer clear of the roaches swarming the ship. Its gotten to the point where you can’t kill them for fear of reprisal.

Speaking of reprisal, wait till you read my next post. I received an email that offers more entertainment value than the GOOD BARRISTER…

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

No sun for you!

Its really hot out today. I wandered up on deck and decided to let the sun beat down upon my upturned face for a while. Suddenly, it hit me. I really don't want to get tanned today. I haven't shaved for over a month. Its probably not a good idea to get tanned when your beard is co-habitating with your chest hairs, unless you plan on staying that way...

Why is it so loud inside my head?

OK, In the last 15 minutes I've learned what its like to shower and brush your teeth while earplugs are inserted. ITS LOUD GODDAMMIT! Like not as loud as the motherfuckers STILL on top of my cabin, but loud enough to make me cry. My electric toothbrush is just another grider, this one inside my head. Gargling? LOUD. Even brushing my hair.

I need a fucking smoke.


MOTHERFUCKER! Two hours before shift and at least three of the bastards are on top of my cabin. Two with hammers and at least one with a grinder. I tried to prepare for it by having a pair of earplugs and my noise-cancellation headphones ready, but even the both togther do not help, much. I hate this!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

TUESDAY, again

Hola and welcome! It's Tuesday and despite the fact that Beezlebub is fucking pounding on my steel box with a hammer an hour before my alarm is due to go off and there was no hot water, or water pressure for that matter, in my little, rusty shadow of a shower, I am in a good mood. I've got my headphones jamming at full volume, despite the fact that my eyes haven't been open for 10 minutes, yet. I've got some awesome, new music going that shall remain nameless as it would seriously put a dent in my reputation. Whatever, in six days I get off this fucking piece of shit and it can't be too soon.

So, today is not only a good day, its TUESDAY and that means I'm over at FTTW. The crazies over there (myself, included) are cooking up some pretty cool things to come, over there and while I can't give up the goat, keep your eyes open for some fun stuff. (I'm thinking wet t-shirt contest)

Sunday, April 22, 2007

food for thought

I copied this from an LSU sports message board, originally published on WorldNetDaily, evidently. I'm not going to agree, or disagree with it and won't comment except to say that the few references to the recent, tragic incident at VT only detract from the piece and I wish they weren't in there, but that aside, this should provoke some thought on both sides of a very tough issue.

As far as my own personal thoughts on the issue of gun control itself, well, you break into my house, or threaten my family and I'll be happy to send you on your way to meet your maker. Laws and politcs be-dammned, I will always be armed and able to protect myself and my family, but if you choose to be unable to provide that protection for you and yours-its your choice and good luck with that.

© 2007

Kennesaw, Ga., City Hall

As the nation debates whether more guns or fewer can prevent tragedies like the Virginia Tech Massacre, a notable anniversary passed last month in a Georgia town that witnessed a dramatic plunge in crime and violence after mandating residents to own firearms.

In March 1982, 25 years ago, the small town of Kennesaw – responding to a handgun ban in Morton Grove, Ill. – unanimously passed an ordinance requiring each head of household to own and maintain a gun. Since then, despite dire predictions of "Wild West" showdowns and increased violence and accidents, not a single resident has been involved in a fatal shooting – as a victim, attacker or defender.

The crime rate initially plummeted for several years after the passage of the ordinance, with the 2005 per capita crime rate actually significantly lower than it was in 1981, the year before passage of the law.

Prior to enactment of the law, Kennesaw had a population of just 5,242 but a crime rate significantly higher (4,332 per 100,000) than the national average (3,899 per 100,000). The latest statistics available – for the year 2005 – show the rate at 2,027 per 100,000. Meanwhile, the population has skyrocketed to 28,189.

By comparison, the population of Morton Grove, the first city in Illinois to adopt a gun ban for anyone other than police officers, has actually dropped slightly and stands at 22,202, according to 2005 statistics. More significantly, perhaps, the city's crime rate increased by 15.7 percent immediately after the gun ban, even though the overall crime rate in Cook County rose only 3 percent. Today, by comparison, the township's crime rate stands at 2,268 per 100,000.

This was not what some predicted.

In a column titled "Gun Town USA," Art Buchwald suggested Kennesaw would soon become a place where routine disagreements between neighbors would be settled in shootouts. The Washington Post mocked Kennesaw as "the brave little city … soon to be pistol-packing capital of the world." Phil Donahue invited the mayor on his show.

Reuters, the European news service, today revisited the Kennesaw controversy following the Virginia Tech Massacre.

Police Lt. Craig Graydon said: "When the Kennesaw law was passed in 1982 there was a substantial drop in crime … and we have maintained a really low crime rate since then. We are sure it is one of the lowest (crime) towns in the metro area." Kennesaw is just north of Atlanta.

The Reuters story went on to report: "Since the Virginia Tech shootings, some conservative U.S. talk show hosts have rejected attempts to link the massacre to the availability of guns, arguing that had students been allowed to carry weapons on campus someone might have been able to shoot the killer."

Virginia Tech, like many of the nation's schools and college campuses, is a so-called "gun-free zone," which Second Amendment supporters say invites gun violence – especially from disturbed individuals seeking to kill as many victims as possible.

Cho Seung-Hui murdered 32 and wounded another 15 before turning his gun on himself.

Friday, April 20, 2007


Seasoned, rare ahi tuna steak with cinnamon coconut cantaloupe salsa on long-grain rice
blackened chicken breast with horseradish tomato puree
Cajun seafood soup
Caesar salad
Steamed veggies
Brown sugar lovelies and german chocolate cupcakes

Tonight’s workout will be 3 hours, thank you very much.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Measure twice, cut once!

This should be of interest to PW...

As you may know, I’ve been fighting strep throat since early March. Three course of two different antibiotics, only to have it blossom again in 2-3 days each time I completed the course. Well, I have a damn good medic on board and he’s in contact with a great doc, who happens to be in West Africa right now, fighting the AIDS epidemic. Anyway, after a bit of back and forth, they’ve finally discovered why the massive amounts of antibiotics haven’t kicked the shit out of the strep.

That would be because I’ve got tonsillitis. I’m now on a very long and very heavy course of antibiotics because the ship’s rolling too much for the preferred treatment requiring the medic to cut those fuckers out with a scalpel. I told him to go ahead and give it the old college try but he’s trying to be all conservative and shit. First, he used the lack of anesthetic as an excuse, but I hammered him on that-I don’t need to be knocked out, just numb it up a bit and start cutting. Weellllll, the boat’s rolling. I’m all like so what? It’s not like there’s all kinds of really important stuff in your throat that you can’t do with out if you slip and anyway THE SHIT GROWS BACK.

That’s right, THE SHIT GROWS BACK. See, I had my tonsils and adenoids removed as a kid. Both of ‘em carved right out o’ there. Right. Thirty-some years later, they’ve grown back and went all itus on me, again. Now, I’m not bitter, but I am pretty angry. I mean, surgery ain’t cheap and it’s not like the fat fuck who cut ‘em out in the first place is still alive. It’s likely he went coronary about 20 years ago, so no refund, no second one is free kind of deal. I gotta pay to have something cut out that was already cut out once.

However, this doesn’t concern me as much as the vasectomy I’ve been contemplating.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Its 3am...

It's also Tuesday.

You know I don't get around posting here till after noon sometime, so what are you doing here? Go on over to FTTW and answer my question! But, give it a little thought before answering;)

I've been thinking about it for a while and still don't have an answer. While you're there, check out the article Turtle wrote about The Great Turtle Race, especially if you have kids!! PW, this means you and my little princess, too:)

It's 3am...

Monday, April 16, 2007

Asian Night

Weather and seas are back to calm. It’s been a busy day for me.

Found out my oldest son managed a speeding ticket before having his license for even a year. Damn, I hope he learns his lesson right now.

My kids went to Mexico a couple days ago. I asked them both what they thought of the Coutnry. My son, he intellectual said, “I dunno, it was real Mexican”. My daughter, the twitchy one, said, “It was really gross”. I’m glad they’ve both been raised to appreciate other cultures. sigh.

I’ve heard a little more on my furnace. Mostly that its out of commission until I can fix it in late May. Oh and a couple descriptions of the soot everywhere in the house. Oil burners without a plumbed cold air return can make a nasty mess, evidently.

Last night’s dinner was scalloped stuffed flounder, topped with a puréed vegetable sauce. Tonight was Asian night-shrimp egg rolls and sweet and sour pork:)

Shit, I just realized I didn’t do my laundry today…well, that suks.

The gang at FTTW has started a group. I don’t know if anyone uses it, or is even aware of what it is, but we’ve started a group and you all are welcome to join. Basically, it tracks what we’re all listening to in real time, enabling anyone to see what you listen to on your computer. Normally, I wouldn’t give something like this a second thought BUT music is a big part of FTTW and these people listen to some really cool stuff, so I joined up. There’s a link over on our front page (left sidebar) if your interested. Anyway, after the last two music videos, you know that at least I have impeccable taste in music and that should be reason enough to join-haha!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Straight Outta Milktoast Ohio

Workout: walking the deck while the heave at the bow and stern is hitting 40 feet. Uphill, then downhill, bouncing between the railings and bulkheads while walking across the beam of the ship. 10 laps and I’ve got to rest. It’s cool and sunny but the winds must be over 30 knots again, today.

I managed to get a call through to PW and the little one, resting after their long road trip. They sounded warm and comfy lying around watching movies. Made me want to cry, I miss them so much. Today begins the backside-yesterday was hump day, or mid-way through the trip. All the inactivity has made this hitch seem to go on forever. Yesterday was actually the only really busy day I’ve had the entire trip. I was jammed with work and a huge problem I just couldn’t solve. The worrying over PW’s road trip, my best friend trying to deal with the fire-breathing dragon in my basement and the extremely bad weather out here made it quite the lousy day.

Today, I feel like a deflated balloon. No oomph.

I have managed to get over to Blogger Idol and get in a few votes for the Queen. The time is growing short and voting is coming to an end-time to pull out the stops and put her over the top, for good people. Get out and rock the vote! I’ve got a shitty connection and can only vote once every two minutes, or something, so go make up for my shortcomings, or something like that. Go. Vote. Now.

What else? I watched a few minutes of the Red Wings beatin up on Calgary…Oh!! I wish I knew how to post an mp3 file on here. If anyone wants to hear something REALLY funny and well, kind of cool, too-email me. I have a copy of Nina Gordon covering Ice Cube’s part of the “Classic” NWA rap, Straight Outta Compton. Got it from one of my fellow FTTW writers. I not only LIKE her version, but it so eloquently illustrates the disparity between a rapper’s lyrics and his lifestyle; reducing Ice Cube and his lyrics to so much circus-clownery that ignorant fucks who buy into that lifestyle couldn’t help but be forced to re-examine their pathetic choices in life. Or not.

Pay dirt: Of course MANY people have married it to a chunk of the NWA video ( I assume) and I shall endeavor to embed. The lyrics are NSFW, of course and THIS IS NOT SAFE FOR THE LITTLE ONE - PW, THIS MEANS YOU! (I love you, Honey)

Saturday, April 14, 2007

I don't like today

Busy out here and getting a little rough. PW and the little one are making a 600 mile road trip along some pretty remote stretches of highway today and I’m begging the gods I can get through to her cell once in a while so I don’t sit here all day, worrying. I always worry when she makes this trip, especially in the winter and when I have a crappy phone link:(

You know how just have that feeling that something's wrong? I managed to get a call out, but she didn't answer her phone. 20 minutes later I get a call from her-they've had a blow-out AND a second flat tire on the highway. Of course, PW handled everything fine, but man, I hate being out here on days like today.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Freddie Saves The Pirate

Ladies and Gentlemen,
Please allow me to introduce FREDDIE. Perhaps it isn’t widely known that on top of being a supermodel, often posing for designer piratewear magazines,
FREDDIE is fluent in Norwegian AND Blogeese, the native tongue of Blogger engineers from the old country. It was this winning combination that saved The Pirate’s ass. Well, once he stopped staring at Freddie’s, decked out in the latest piratewear during her last photoshoot, that is.

Tittel: Hjelp

I need help. NOT that kind, you smart asses! I know you guys. I seriously need help with blogger. I need someone to walk me through my Norwegian buttons and links, to a place where I can reset my blogger language to plain old English, or to that mystical and obscure place where I can actually send a real blogger person an email crying and begging for help while slobbering on myself.

Without some form of help from the outside, I am screwed. I have learned several words and phrases in the past two days, but I am getting pretty pissed off! Why me?

Mexican Roadhouse Lunch Bunnies (or why is all my blogger shit in Norweigan?)

I’ve got another extra at FTTW. Today I tell the story of being hunted by Orangutans on the Island of Borneo, last year. And if that isn’t enough bullshit to turn your eyes brown, you can read the crap below.

OK, I didn’t wake up early as planned due to my inept handling of the alarm clock. However, the reason I wanted to get up early was to partake in Mexican Lunch Day, being celebrated at the noon meal-breakfast for me. If you know me, you know I cannot eat upon waking unless it is Deer Season and I have my .35 caliber buddy sitting next to me whilst I consume breakfast burritos and coffee.

So, I have to get up an hour early and then I can eat lunch food for a late breakfast. Well, despite my inability to slide the little button on my alarm clock ONE notch to the left, I began dreaming of Mexican food right around my normal wake-up time and sat bolt upright, salivating. Still salivating and day-dreaming of fajitas and guacamole, I decided to hit lunch even before coffee-oooooooooh.

The fajitas were heaven, the guacamole angels singing. I covered everything with fresh sliced jalapenos, like the tears of god sprinkled across my plate and there the metaphors and similes end. I am overstuffed and just a little bit uncomfortable. The coffee burns after sliced jalapenos. It is a good burn, reminding me of Deer Season. Was that an analogy?

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

9 out of 10 drippy dicks and sore throats recommend penicillin

Finally. We are sailing back to work. We still have ships out o’ commission, but we’re heading back and we are ready to kick some butt. I am a coiled spring, poised to pounce on anything that even resembles work.

Today we took the supply ship alongside. It was the same ship that took me to my mother vessel while in Alaskan waters last year and it brought back some nasty memories of 3 frozen days with little food, or water, sleeping in a survival suit. Anyhoo, we received a disappointingly small amount of food stores and then the damn thing took out the railing of the stern stairway as she left. Not a stellar grocery run by all accounts. I picked up a new pair of steel-toed boots and gloves in the deal so it wasn’t a total loss.

While our new cook was less than pleased with the food haul, he later engaged a few of us in a lively session of “decide the next 3 lunches and dinners”. I seized upon specially prepared pork chops for tonight’s dinner and held out for the first win. Emboldened by this victory, I slammed the competition to set tomorrow’s lunch as Mexican, with fresh Guac, and then in a bold move secured Saturday’s dinner as Asian night, complete with ahi tuna/seaweed rolls. I was immensely pleased with the chops, done in sesame and olive oils, crusted with rosemary, black pepper, garlic and something else that escapes me. A brownie and a glass of milk capped off the chops:)

I got an email from my wonderful and talented editors at FTTW, (pause to wipe nose off) asking for more writing, so if you’ve a mind to, go poke around there, on Thursday. There has been some damn good writing over there, lately and I’m quite pleased to be able to stick my junk in with it all.

Finally, in a surprise move, my strep throat crept back in and began to strangle me again, last night. This, two days after my SECOND course of antibiotics completed. WTF? I have learned from this that you do NOT treat strep with Keflex. Break out the drippy dick meds, bare your ass and get the fucking shot. I WILL be better in 2 days.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Journal Adrift: STILL

Adrift. Forever. I know eventually we will leave here, sail back to the prospect and begin working, again. But it doesn’t seem that way. It feels like we have been here for a month. I am beyond boredom.

Lets see, the weather was a bitch today. I woke up to the ship heaving, badly. Green water was breaking over the bow. Winds were up over 50 knots at times. This afternoon the captain gave up and broke DP. We sailed with the wind, south, for a time. As night falls we are sailing into the wind, back to our DP point off the little, deserted Island that has been our distant neighbor for the better part of a week.

Dinner was yellow fin tuna, again. This time it came with a spicy pineapple/orange coolie. I saw bits of hot pepper in there and was happy. Hot peach cobbler and fresh whipped cream. Fat bastard in the making, am I.

Its Tuesday-you know the drill

It's Tuesday! That means twice the pirate for one low price. My column today at FTTW once again lays waste to corruption and just plain bad scamming in my favorite country for fine dining and theatre-Senegal. Home of that kooky lawyer; your friend and mine, Barrister Richaaaaaaard Willlllllllllllllson! You know the drill-hit the links. While your there, read my book review, or check out the other guys-we've got some new writers this week, too.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Just a dusting

So with all the snow back home over the last few days, I ask my buddy to stop at my house, check on the dog and make sure everything's ok. He emails me-

dear pirate, as soon as i find the house i will let the dog out'....and sends me this:

Put a fucking spear in Caillou's chest

So I read a blurb about some radio guy who shot his mouth off and offended somebody and I’m wondering how this country managed to turn into a bunch of fucking pussies. Really, that’s the perception I get, sometimes. Somebody is always offended. I don’t know what the radio guy said and I don’t care. The point is his show was taken off the air for a couple weeks for something he said. I’m sorry, but this is a show that people have the right to listen to and more importantly, NOT listen to, if they so choose. Why does a very vocal minority have the right to scream and whine, getting this dude canned for a while and he DOESN’T have the right to speak his mind, or make a joke? Everything is PC. PC. Politically Correct. Politically. Correct. Politics? Politicians. Correct? Give me a motherfucking break. What a contradiction. That phrase offends me.

Personally, I would prefer to live in a society where you can offend everyone, equally. Likewise, those offended should have the right to get angry and shout back, but crying and whining should be punishable by the harshest means available such as an 8 hour Caillou and Barney marathon wearing those fucking eye things they used in Clockwork Orange.
Come to think of it, shows like these are undermining the backbone of this county. Calliou teaches our youth that the proper thing to do is to fucking whine like a baby when you don’t like something and eventually you will get you way. Where would this country be if our founding fathers had just whined like babies? We’d be having high tea at 3 o’clock, that’s where.

Barney-well, lets not even get started on Barney.
Anyway, I wish people in this country would toughen up and grow some thicker skin. That goes for the rest of the world and especially the little armada of Chilean midgets following my ship around in little rubber dinghy’s, shaking their tiny fists and screaming shit I can’t possibly understand. Twenty years ago, I could’ve popped those little fuckers with a long-handled boat hook and let the sharks have their way. Today I’d get fired for that kind of shit.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

A Spoonful of Sugar...

We’ve been sitting here doing nothing for so long that tonight’s discussion was about all the dirty things we want to do to Mary Poppins. Mary Fucking Poppins! Ugh.

It’s going to be a long trip.

Happy Easter

Happy Easter everyone!

Today, I woke up a few minutes early in order to eat the noon meal, which was our big, Easter meal. Normally, I do coffee and a smoke, skipping the noon meal in favor of toast and yogurt around 1, or 2. The cook advised me yesterday that I would do well to stop in at noon today and he was right.

The meal revolved around a giant ham and a whole turkey. All the trimmings for both were laid out. I had a plate of ham, stuffing, yams, steamed veggies, mashed potatoes with the skins and salad. For desert I had piece of boston cream pie and a big chunk of a pastry made with layers of flaky dough/pastry stuff and whipped cream.

After coffee and calls to PW and the kids, I’m posting this, putting on my headphones, some quiet music and taking a nap right here in the instrument room. Some guys not sharing a cabin are sneaking off to do a bunk audit, so I’m sacking out right here.

We are still drifting aimlessly, near the coast.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

The morning after...

Well, my first book review, over at FTTW received a very nice review by The Pen, over at The Pen Is Mightier, which made my day:)

He obviously didn’t read the stupid poem I posted here last night while totally whacked out on Darvocets and Flexerals. I guess I should be thankful for that and NOT blog on drugs, no matter how much fun I’m having.

Here's a shot of my coffee maker. Just because.

read me, oh read me, please!

Lots for him and her and you

Lots for you to see and do

Go see my buddy John at his new site

He lives in the box, just to the right

Or click right here to read a review

At Faster Than The World

Where I've got something new

Friday, April 6, 2007

Say hello to my new friend

While I’m bobbing around out here with nothing to do, I thought I would tell you about an encounter I had during crew change back in February. I spent one night in Mobile, AL., before flying home. It was kind of rough. PW was sick and I was out of my mind with worry. I had an early dinner in the hotel and went for a walk as evening began to set in. My hotel in Mobile was only 2 blocks from I-10, where it passes just south of downtown and begins to rise over the bay. I headed in that direction to get away from the bar and restaurant crowd that filled the streets in the other direction. I wasn’t in the mood.

Under the first overpass, I ran into a homeless man. He was living in a cardboard box and had a fire going in a barrel. I stopped to warm my hands and we struck up a conversation about the state of the world. He seemed lonely and really wanted to talk. I learned a little of how he ended up under the overpass, living out of a box and eating garbage. It was a sad story. I felt a ton of sympathy for the guy. I mean, we seemed to be kindred spirits. He was witty, intelligent and damn good-looking, if I can get away with saying that about another guy. He could have been my alter-ego, my long-lost twin, or something!

Anyway, I felt really bad for the poor slob and after leaving, wished I had done something for him. A block down the road, I came across a pawn shop. I wandered in, looking for goodies and stumbled on an old laptop for 50 bucks. I thought this might make a nice present for the homeless guy, bought it and raced back to the overpass, stopping only for a pack of smokes and a pint of shitty booze. He was still “home” and I gave it to him, along with the booze. He became homeless long before laptops and PC’s were commonplace, so I fired it up and gave him a few pointers on porn surfing and email. Told him I had a blog and showed him my site. He was impressed and asked me to show him how to make him one. I didn’t have time, but I did set him up with an email account and promised to write.

Well, we have kept in contact the last few weeks and I’ve now set him up with a blog. He’s looking for a home. If you’re so disposed, his email is listed in his profile, over at his blog. I’m listed as a contributor, so I’ve added him to my blogroll and a button for his site under “OTHER PORTS IN A STORM”. He seems like a nice guy, go say hello, or offer him a place to live for a few days. He tells me he’s always wanted to travel and I can tell you, he desperately needs a shower, among other things.

Journal Adrift: I've lost count

We’ve got a rookie captain at the wheel tonight. We are still drifting aimlessly, in general, but tonight he is “practicing” maneuvers with the thrusters. Imagine tying knots in the ocean with a huge ship. Now imagine trying to live on the ship while someone is tying the knots. We’re spinning and weaving, pitching and rolling and the seas are pretty rough. Laying in my bunk, trying to watch a movie, I could feel the inertia as we spun, sometimes against and sometimes with the seas. It’s dizzying. I don’t much like it, but he needs the practice. Our maneuvers are difficult and even highly experienced captains have difficulties, so he practices and we try to ignore the roller coaster ride. I just wish whatever is rolling around up there on top of my steel ceiling, would stop so I can sleep.
Its 4 am.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Kermit laid bare

Ok, now that I have the Internet once again in the palm of my sweaty hand, here is one damn funny video, courtesy of one of my esteemed, fellow FTTW writers, Shawna:

And I finally noticed the embed code on U-tube. I'm such a dumb-ass. Been wanting to know how to do this for over a year.
HA! It didn't fit-too wide, but I also just learned you can tweak the object width and height within the embed code. Sweet.

Journal Adrift: Day 2

Day 2 of drifting aimlessly. Today, the big event is trying to get our satellite receiver working better, which means it is no longer operating. The operation is pretty complicated, with one guy sitting inside the giant, white Plexiglas dome with some sort of portable command-entry device that looks like a tricorder, one guy in the radio room on a cell phone getting commands from mission control and one guy in our control room operating the various control devices connected to the receiver in the dome. It is all very impressive and not working worth a damn. I’ve never been inside the dome, before. It’s very cold and acoustically perfect. The first time I spoke, I nearly shit myself; it amplified my voice so much. I sang for a while, recited some shitty poetry I memorized in 8th grade and cursed my boss in a very cool, god-like voice.

But I got bored with that pretty quick, had a smoke and now I’m back in the control room with nothing to do but write about my great dome adventure. I promised the Queen I would try to get a picture of the barracuda, but he hasn’t been around for my last four urine dumps (I’m in Apollo 13 mode with all the satellite/Houston, we have a problem shit going on) off the stern.

I’ve decided today is going to be Honorary Burt Bacharach Day and I’ve set up a playlist with every third song written by Burt. My mind is like a bad satellite receiver-it is always wandering off-topic into places it shouldn’t go, so I’ll tell you that as soon as I wrote Burt, I thought of Ernie and their progressive relationship (for Sesame Street, anyway), then careened off the bulkheads into the Muppets and a video one of the writers, or editors linked in our daily 379 emails (Oh man, do I wish you guys could read those babys). When/if the satellite receiver again becomes functional, I will post a link to this video. It’s a music video of Kermit jamming the NIN song, Hurt. I was in tears. Kermit boosting heroin is something everyone needs to see, especially if you’ve been there. I could have done without getting my eyes burned out by the image of Kermit blowing Fozzie for a fix, but you gotta take the good with the bad and everyone has to pay for their habits, right?

Burt tunes put me in such a good mood. Have I told you that I have red stapler? I will pause right here to take a picture of it (I bet you can blow up the pic to see proof and if your doing that right now can you read this? FUCK OFF)

(click to enlarge)
It’s a Swingline model 747, with slightly curved handle for better control as opposed to the model 767 straight-handled looser it usually sits right next to, looking quite smug I might add. (you can also see part of this looser in the picture) Jackie De Shannon is singing “What The World Needs Now Is Love” and I love my red stapler. Nobody better try to snatch that fucker, or I’ll rip their arms off.

UPDATE: It looks like the operation to get even better reception has completely fucked the reception. They’re done and nothing works. I need a smoke.

AGAIN: No sat. Went down to B.S. with the cook. Tonight’s menu is bef (not beef) stroganoff, Cajun-blackened redfish with crawfish sauce, steamed veggies and pesto noodles. One half hour till chow….

I watched (sat TV has different recvr) a portion of a show about the formation of the elements of the universe. I re-learned that gaseous elements formed during the big bang, all elements up to iron formed in the early stars and the remaining, heavier elements were formed when the stars aged enough to start going supernova. Ok.

80’s music sucks. Nothing good came out of the eighties. Big hair. Guys wearing makeup, singing like chicks. Not good.

Solitaire, even spider solitaire gets mighty damn boring. Fast. Pinball and minesweeper are even worse. I have no good books and I wish the sun would set so I have something to do. Sunsets out here are spectacular. I will try to photograph tonight’s.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Journal Adrift

A pirate's daily journal:


Drank 3 pots of coffee this morning.
We are currently adrift.
I saw a BIG fucking shark with a black-tipped dorsal fin and a very pointy snout. Approximately 10 ft in length. Mako?
A barracuda hangs out at the stern, like a hood on a street corner. He barely moves and looks pissed off.
The seas are nearly glassy with a gentle swell. No wind and it is HOT.
The satellite connection is very, very slow. We are alone, the other ships in the fleet have left us for port.
Conversation was lively for the first two hours of shift. Now we ignore each other. Tired of surfing after an hour. Go vote for the Queen on Blogger Idol over at Greg O'Commentwhore on April 09. While you're there, poke around-the dude is drop-dead funny. I know, it's a week away, but fuck, I don't have much today. Go there anyway. The last interesting thing I read was that Keith Richards snorted his father, mixed with a little blow.
The other pirates are in a daze. Nobody even noticed that New Kids on The Block was on the stereo till I got up, swearing and yelling. WTF?
XM radio sucks. Really. It is useless. Even the Boneyard plays the same Metallica, over and over. Fred and Ethel are just as bad. Top Tracks? Forget it. Deep Tracks? No way.
My sanity is hanging on by a thread. The thread is the totally hiarious 48 emails I recieved so far today from my fellow FTTW writers and editors. Some days they generate over 100 and the shit is REALLY funny. Hell, I'm a captive audience on days like today. Last night I watched the second half of The Illusionist. It was an excellent movie and I would recommend it.
Three days ago, my oppo discoved that the software we use to work our magic has an option to create a blog for each project. We started a work blog and I am both entertained and horrified by the thought that I now write for a work blog. It is handy, though. I can't say FUCK in it, though. Fuck.
I peed off the stern of the ship today. I tried to hit the barracuda. He is now waiting for me to fall overboard.
I have been daydreaming about dinner. Last night's ahi tuna was fucking brilliant with a teriaki ginger sauce, garnished with red peppers, mango and scallions. I had a side of rare, fillet mignon, too. yummy.

Monday, April 2, 2007

This is what I imagine heaven to be

My last weekend at home, we packed up and headed to the north shore of Lake superior, graciously invited by a close friend to spend the weekend in a place I’ll aptly call the enchanted forest. It was a peaceful weekend of good wine, food and music, beautiful scenery and laughing children. I only pulled my laptop out once, to write the first part of this:
This place is what I imagine heaven to be. Two cabins, a large, three-bedroom and a smaller, one bedroom nestled in the cedars and pines along a steeply dropping river, blessed with swift rapids and spectacular waterfalls. Stone stairs and walkways lined with split-rail fences, tiny flower gardens and various pieces of natural artwork hidden beneath the pines or behind a rock. We are staying in the main cabin dominated by a massive stone fireplace and hearth that spans most of the length of one wall in the living area off the dining room.
View from our cabin.

The cabin hiding in the trees atop the cliff. I'm standing on the river.

Drying out in front of the fireplace.

Our cabin sits atop a cliff, overlooking the waterfall as it plunges toward Lake Superior. It is the sound you fall asleep to and the sound that wakes you in the morning. A fire crackles in the fireplace and we relax to the sound of two mandolins, accompanied by a hollow-body guitar. The wine is good. Very good, in fact. Another bottle is slated for tonight if I feel in the mood. The air outside was crisp a few minutes ago when I stepped out to have a smoke and watch the stars painting a jet-black night sky. The music is mesmerizing and I sit just to the left of my youngest daughter, who sits in a cushioned, wooden chair by herself. She stares at the instruments and watches their hands on the strings. She’s tapping her bare foot against me in time to the music. I think if I spoke to her she would jump, so into the music she is. But I just watch her, soaking up the smile in her eyes and her excitement in finding new music she loves.
Dualing mandolins.

Collaborating artists, drawing a picture of the waterfall just outside the window.


This morning the waterfall was partially flowing and the river remained frozen. The kids of course, began a systematic attack on the ice, as kids do. By lunchtime, the kids were red-faced and sweaty. The ice above the falls had been beaten and the flow over the falls, doubled. The adults helped out a bit, too. Tonight, we are enjoying the cabin, good music and the crackling fire. The waterfall fills the silence between songs along with a little conversation and a lot of laughing and joking. The outside world doesn’t intrude on this place.

Contemplating the fire.
Before the breakout.

The next morning, as I gazed out at the falls an eight foot wall of water, trees and ice roared down the river and launched off the falls in a thunderous crash. The river had just finished what the children had started in an awesome display of nature’s power and fury. Ten minutes later the river subsided to a dull roar and we trekked down the river to its mouth at Lake Superior to survey the damage caused by the juggernaut. This walk along the river had been planned and it was fortuitous that we hadn’t gotten an early start.
About 3 minutes after the breakout. The falls are thundering!

The walk downstream to the mouth was an eye-opener. Icy banks scoured clean by the flood. Massive ice chunks sitting high and dry several feet beyond and above the river. In one section near the mouth, the river had carved a new channel after tons of ice and snow plugged the original, overflowing the bank and spilling huge sheets of ice into a pond. We walked the beach for a time and picked up agates, finding a few gems in the newly storm-turned spring beach.

After a lunch of pastys, we packed, cleaned up the cabins and drove home in the worst combination of rain, hail and fog that I have ever seen. My knuckles get white again, just thinking about it. I’ll a few pictures, including a few from a visit to this magical place last summer when I had a steadier hand with the camera…