Ok, so the sea is a tricky place. We know that. But you, dear friends may not know this about your beloved The Clam: we used to work for Outward Bound in Maine years ago and have spent a lot of time sailing around rough water in rickety, open wooden boats. So we were sympathetic when the Liana’s Ransom, a fake pirate ship, was disabled off our coast and was abandoned after a rescue by Coastguardspersons from Gloucester Small Boat Station and Air Station Cape Cod. Word to the USCG, and anytime anyone makes that asshole joke that goes, “The worst thing you can ever hear are the words, ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help'” feel free to punch them in the dick area and say, “Semper Paratus”.
However, when we started looking into the story we have to admit passing some judgement. They lost power? It’s a sail boat. Why didn’t they put a jib up or something? Again, we weren’t there but you know, that’s the standard procedure when on a sailboat, using the actual sails. It’s like in the name and everything. The story said their sails were all twisted around the mast. All of them? The jibs? Really guys?
Area of doubt #2 came after the rescue when she didn’t actually sink. This is sort of embarrassing. If you abandon a boat at sea after a distress call you really, really want it to dramatically slip beneath the waves on camera within the rotor wash of the helo winching the last survivor aboard, just for optics’ sake. However, abandoning a boat that keeps on floating is sort of bad form in the nautical world. It’s the equivalent of calling the cops in the middle of the night because an intruder is crawling in through your attic only to find out it’s squirrels. They’re going to be “yeah, right, abundance of caution and all that, can’t be too careful,” but you know when they get to the cruiser they’re going: “dumbass”.
I guess it was under threat of sinking? What the hell was going on? Then we saw this video interview of the crew post rescue.
Video from the Gloucester Daily Times
Oh. I get it. You were confined below decks and it was really…uncomfortable? Did we somehow miss the point in this story when the situation became actually life threatening? I’ve had experiences on the commuter rail this winter more harrowing than what was described in this vid. The background music of “Walking on Sunshine” didn’t help with the overall irreverent tone of this video. I’m pretty sure Howard Blackburn would be giving you guys the finger, but, well, you know…
I don’t mean to take umbrage here, but they sent our guys out there to rescue these chucklehads and though I have every faith our motor lifeboat crew is inherently capable of 10′ seas (they practice in much bigger surf), anytime you get two boats near each other in rough seas it involves an element of risk (the helicopter was for an injured crewmember and that seems totally legit). So, I still get that it was scary and everything. For instance we hear someone told the crew to ‘Call their mothers’ which is probably the first time that particular order has been given on a pirate ship, but after watching the video I’d ask the crew to maybe be a little less…flip? Maybe laugh about it not so much?
Yeah, flip. I know this sounds weird coming from your The Clam, but these guys were rescued in a fairly major operation from a boat that kept on floating. So, it’s sort of on the crew here to be somewhat contrite and spend a little time publicly thanking the living shit out of the CG and maybe hold off on telling the bro-tabulous tale of being below decks in a storm that produced swells somewhat larger than what we get here on a regular basis at this time of year.
Sure I know the bowsprit snapped and the chains holding the main were then compromised and the whole thing could have come crashing down. But when you go out and with two motors, have mechanical issues with both of them, are unable to get any sail up, then lose your bowsprit, you’re not demonstrating an abundance of seamanship here. This wasn’t a Nor’easter. This wasn’t the Perfect Storm. From the sounds of things it was more like Davey Jones’ Lockerroom.
But The Clam is honestly glad everyone is OK. Maybe we were just hoping for a little more Russell Crowe in Master and Commander and less Jack Spar-bro.
Oh, and one more thing. Unless you are a sniper or a rapper (signed to a label) the hat brim goes in front. Just a tip.