Dayworkers Officially Recognized As ‘People’

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‘Two things I’d always hoped I’d be able to stick around in the business long enough to see.’ Says Bobby Diamond, Palma De Mallorca-based dayworker, sailor, son, lover. ‘Dayworkers get recognized as people. And me get a full-time job. Now there’s only one thing left to do.’ The tears roll down his tanned cheeks to be wiped into a muddy pink smear by dusty hands. ‘I just never thought I’d see the day.’

With members of the Informal Association Of Adventurers, Backpackers and Dayworkers and Dockwalkers (IAABDD) having finally been granted the official designation of ‘People’ by the International Labour Organization – following an exhaustive campaign of leaving stacks of paper on their doorstep, and the stalking of ILO board members to their favourite bars and restaurants – the life of the average dayworker is set to change; and perhaps actually matter.

Tim Tamb, unofficial Director of the IAABDD, spells out the implications for us on one calloused hand:

‘No more waiting indefinitely at the passerelle to have a word while the crew onboard look right past you, or worse zoom the camera in and pick apart your physical appearance. No more handing out carefully crafted CVs and cover letters to hungover-looking deckhands who won’t get a department head for you only to watch your papers get placed under a water bottle and forgotten about. No more being told you only get 30 minutes for lunch and the boat doesn’t provide it even though you’re 15 minutes walk from the shops and no one warned you to bring your own food. No more showing up for a full day’s work to be told it’s only going to be a couple of hours. No more giving us attitude as though its our fault you aren’t prepared and have no idea how to manage a team. I’ve run out of fingers. No more of that ridiculously attractive masseuse pretending I don’t exist. Well, possibly that, I suppose that’s not covered by this. But no more of us being treated like imbeciles by people who are crew because we aren’t yet, even though most of them were once where we are now.’

Reaction throughout the yachting industry has been generally positive. Crewing agents, long a proponent of the humble dayworker, have been quick to congratulate the estimated 3 million adventurers, backpackers, dayworkers and dockwalkers currently considering doing yachts worst jobs for the lowest pay.

Onboard though there has been some pushback against the radical idea that those attempting to start their career should be given respect. ‘I don’t argue that they’re not people, I just don’t care.’ Says one tosser on some boat somewhere. “No one gave me any respect when I was coming up through the ‘my-cousin-who’s-a-captain’s-called-me-up’ system. Why should I give anyone else any? Earn it or burn it I always say. No, I’m not sure what that means either.”

Less controversially – though still worryingly indifferent – are those like one Chief Officer who wished to remain anonymous. ‘I don’t mind giving respect but how far is this going to go? I mean next we’ll be having to give them reasonable breaks, track their hours of rest, and provide a full familiarization. Before you know it we’ll be signing Seafarers Agreements for dayworkers!’ When it’s pointed out that this has actually been required for some time now there is a long pause. The deck officer turns in the direction of the bow where a team of young men in mismatched shirts is dutifully polishing stainless with toothbrushes. He rubs his forehead. ‘Oh dear.’

500m Motor Yacht Predicted By 2030

Group of people looking through binoculars

A vessel of this size would simply piss people off.

By 2030 the largest vessel on earth may be a motor yacht if current growth trends – and the casting aside of any form of taste – continue.

This prediction was reached by The General Alarm through mining the historical record of ten years ago, when some boat named Rising Sun was considered the largest yacht at 138m; then taking the difference in length between this and the soon-to-be-launched Triple Deuce (222m) and multiplying it by a complicated factor of bad taste and irascible hubris. Which arrives us at a 500m pleasure vessel.

With results as eye-catching as these being spat out by the models our investigative team ran the numbers deep into the night and both times arrived at the same conclusion: People are ridiculous.

Perhaps most striking about this projected size of yacht being a probability by the end of the next decade is that there have only ever been 8 vessels constructed over 400m. Of these 7 were oil tankers that have since been decommissioned and broken up to create another planet in the future. According to Baronness, head of media relations for Cobra – the parent company to Exxon, Shell, and BP – the main reason these vessels weren’t kept on the water was simple. “We got tired of people making fun of us.”

When the flat growth curve of commercial vessels is compared with the rapidly rising erection of large yachts, a point is reached in the near future where the largest vessel on the water will be a yacht. In naval architecture circles this predicted juncture is referred to as Delta O. Rumour has it this stands for Obscene. Facts are few on the ground.

“The critical design challenge in constructing a yacht of that size will be the same as it is with every large yacht; namely: How do we make it not look like a giant white turd of excess. Or a blue one. Or any kind of turd really.” Says Patrice De Regle, the only person who would talk to us about this who knows what a yacht is and has a knowledgeable sounding name. “And such a large turd is a very hard thing to hide indeed. Especially when you are trying to show it off.”

Excrement-emulation difficulties aside, there will be other issues with this vessel we dreamed up and are now wasting your time discussing. Among them: How would you locate the bathroom? Where will you find a captain with hands large enough to drive it? And; What ports will possibly be able to accommodate such a thing. Cursory research to the last question reveals there is currently only one place in the world that this potential behemoth could visit; Galveston, Texas. Raising serious concerns – and hope – that perhaps it just won’t be worth it.

Blood Moon Eclipse Has Unexpected Effect On Seafarers

supermoonJose Fernandez picks up a piece of paper with dramatic flourish and tearing it asunder, declares, ‘I don’t quit!’ He then goes on to explain he’d actually sent in his resignation by email earlier that day and would have to walk the four decks up to the bridge to speak to the captain and tell him not to open that email, but we got the idea.

The reason for his change of heart? “That eclipse was the coolest goddamn thing man,” Mr. Fernandez explains. “In fact I can’t remember the last time I stepped out of the bridge on watch. I think it was that time we were looking for Sam, even though everyone knew where he’d gone. And that was 8 years ago now. Poor Sam.”

Across the seafaring industry, in online forums, Twitter, Facebook, and in person, reactions were the same; the eclipse was pretty damn impressive and served as a reminder as to why many were drawn to the sea in the first place. A selection of posts here:

“Haven’t seen all the crew in one place without lifejackets on ever,” Tweeted a deckhand on the cargo ship Never Home.

“Actually put the fourth season of GoT on pause to go out on deck.” Said another in a private forum called ‘Role-Players First, Sailors Second. Unhand Me Good Sire.’

“Was going to quit and try to find something shorebased, maybe in hotel management or waste disposal, but seeing that ochre orb hanging high in the heavens like a glowing portal to a happier dimension, really reminded me why I spend my life on a giant metal box moving shit no one really wants.” Posted Capt. Anonymous on his blog ‘I’m Captain Anonymous, Who The Fuck Are You?’

A canvas of vessel management companies this morning confirms that resignations are down and crew morale seems at an unusually high level today, following the celestial event shared by millions.

“I would put spirits out on our boats today at slightly higher than, ‘I think I might manage a shower today’, which is a damn sight better than it’s been the last few weeks, hovering somewhere between ‘Who cares?’ And, ‘Not me.” Says Dermot McDermaid, lead operations therapist for Maersk.

“Our usual daily attrition rate sits at about 30%.” McDermaid confesses. “People who don’t quit that is. It’s all we can do to keep up. We’ve had to start chartering daily flights from Moscow, Manila and Colombo just to make our manning requirements. Life on the water is tough, and if I can be frank; devastatingly boring. An event like this does wonders for raising interest and taking people’s minds off the fact that they are literally being paid to sit in a chair in the middle of nowhere far away from everyone they love.”

With consensus across the board being that a celestial occurrence such as this is a solid win for those who spend their time on the water, eyes have turned to working out when next seafarers can expect to witness a similarly uplifting event. Reaction to the answer has been understandably muted.

“I was hoping for something more along the lines of next Sunday night.” Admits Mr. Fernandez, reaching for his ripped piece of paper and a roll of scotch tape. “2033? Yeah. I won’t be out here for that.”

Sea Time Gained Onboard Yachts To Be Recognized By The Marriott

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In a reversal of their previous position that experience gained on yachts is absolutely useless, the Marriott chain of Overpriced Airport Hotels & Resorts You Only Go To Because They Take Your Air Miles has agreed that henceforward they will be glad to accept all such sea time. The CEO of the chain, Mr. Rogers, explains:

“The culture of opinion here at the Marriott chain of OAH & RYOGTBTTYAM has long been, what exactly do yacht crew do anyway? I mean, does anyone know? What the hell is a yacht? Who the hell cares? But this summer that all changed when I used a tiny fraction of my bonus from last year to charter one of these things. And man were my eyes opened. I saw firsthand that these crew have no union, expectation of any form of comprehensive medical coverage, or idea that perhaps their employer should be contributing to a pension fund on their behalf. In addition to that they seem happy to work insane hours doing menial tasks, and I must say look pretty damn good doing it. So let me tell you I took one look at this and I said, ‘We need these people slaving er, I mean working, for us!”

Mr. Rogers quickly moved on to point out the expected efficiencies of task-overlap to be gained by intermingling the two industries. “Obviously the interior crew will make fantastic servers and room attendants. Tender drivers? Airport shuttle runs. Engineers? We have many fantastic opportunities in the janitorial and groundskeeping department.” Here he pauses to mention that he has been made aware that marine engineers already take a course called ‘Advanced Hotel Services’. “It’s like they were made for us.”

The coup de grass for Mr. Rogers, and where he gets so animated he has to remove his tie and take a quick break for a club sandwich extra mayo, is when he discusses the Marriott’s in-house accreditation system for general managers.

“By complete coincidence, I shit you not, we have in place a system by which our general managers are promoted according to how many rooms in the hotel they’re deemed competent to manage. We start at 200 rooms, progress to 500, then 3000, and, for the rare gifted few; unlimited rooms under their control. I think you know where I’m going with this. Yes. Correct. The MCA Master of Yachts system is directly modelled after our own! It’s almost too good to be true. The cross-over couldn’t be any easier. These guys are going to love working at the airport. Many of them pretty much live there already anyway.”

The interview ended as Mr. Rogers executive team entered the board room in which we were seated, high-fiving and back-slapping each other as they arrived.

“Is it done?” Mr. Rogers asked, wiping his chins having finished his samwich.

“It sure is Don. Fired ’em all, told them we found replacements.” Here the laughter bubbles up in the chest of the burly exec. “Offshore!” He guffaws and the room erupts into booming chuckles. Mr. Rogers turns and explains that he was so excited about the possibility of importing yacht crew that he authorized the firing of all senior managers and janitorial workers, nationwide, that very afternoon. “I know, it’s a little hasty, but the thought of all of those non-union workers just waiting to not fucking complain got me so excited I couldn’t help myself. The potential here is truly astounding. I only wish I’d thought of this before. What could possibly go wrong.” Here he levels off for a second and his focus seems to latch on to the top of a building in the distance. A building with a large flagpole mounted to its peak. A flagpole with a large flag bearing the stars and strips. His brows furrow and his mouth slowly opens. “Hey. Hey. They’re all allowed to work in the U.S. right?”

Global Fears Of A Yacht Being Delayed By Having To Help A Migrant Vessel Continue To Grow

(Massimo Sestini/Polaris)

(Massimo Sestini/Polaris)

The tension was palpable on a humid summer’s evening recently in Valletta, Malta, as a yacht crew silently prepared to slip lines, bound for Sicily. The newly joined guests sipped champagne on the sundeck, nervously discussing who had safes in their cabins as the deckhands hustled about, exchanging looks of worry and concern. Once off the dock and clear of the harbour walls the captain summoned the crew to the bridge for a last briefing before entering the new most-dreaded-sea-area-in-the-world-for-a-yacht: Migrant Territory.

“Ok folks, listen up.” The master launches in, sweating profusely despite the arctic temperatures inside the luxury craft. “As you know, this evening we will be transiting a body of water that has recently been much in the news. I won’t sugarcoat this, tonight carries with it a very real threat of inconvenience to us all. It’s possible that very desperate people risking their lives, as well as those of their families, may be so inconsiderate as to wantonly sink in our general vicinity, forcing us to help them and possibly costing us hours of our own lives. These hours will never be gotten back. As well, some of these people might smell bad, may want to use our toilets, and possibly don’t speak English. I know. I hate to be so crude, but these are the times we live in.” Here the stoic leader pauses to allow one of the interior crew to exit to the upper pantry where she can be heard retching into a sink.

“We will not allow human suffering to keep us from our pre-arranged itinerary. With that in mind, here are two sets of blinders to be worn at all times by both the Officer of the Watch and lookout. What do you mean how do they work? Ok, lets run through a few scenarios to make sure we’re all on the same page.”

“Scenario 1: You hear a mayday being issued over the radio. Jim, you’re on watch, what do you do?”
“Alert the master.”
“Absolutely not. You turn off the radio as well as the AIS and swear a vow of secrecy with your watchmate. If he won’t promise, then you call me. I will take over and make him promise.”

“Ok, scenario 2,” He continues. “The sat phone rings. Its your mother. She is calling from a migrant boat 8.3 nautical miles directly ahead. They are sinking and she needs your help. Frank, what do you do?”
“I don’t have a mother.”
“Good. What if you did?”
“I would make a clear and noticeable alteration of course to starboard, turn off our running lights and quickly consult my Seaman’s Guide To Avoiding A Moral Obligation: Pocket Ed. for further direction.”
“Excellent. I’ve just changed the watch roster, you’re on duty all night.”

“Last scenario then. Susan, you’re on service, it’s close to midnight and you’re clearing up the sundeck. Out of the darkness above you see a shape descending. It’s a migrant, coming in by parachute. He lands onboard. What do you do?
“Migrants have parachutes?”
“They could. These are desperate people Susan. Now focus.”
“I get Frank?”
“Not a bad answer, but no. You distract the para-migrant with an aperitif and when he goes for it smash him in the face with the service tray and throw him overboard. Got it?”
“Throw him overboard?”
“Yes! Susan. Oh. Vur. Board. Do you know how much paperwork we have to do if we take a migrant into port? A great deal more than if I fire you.”

“Jillian,” He says, putting a fatherly arm over the shaking shoulders of the interior crewmember as she returns to the meeting from the upper pantry sink, “Take as much time as you need, these are trying circumstances. Ok, that’s enough. We’re in a rush. We have very important people who have very important things planned in specific places at specific times and I for one am not going to let a flood of human suffering crossing our intended path interfere with cocktail hour. Godammit we are better than that! And them.”

Revolutionary Eco-Design For Yachts Unveiled, To Be Called: “Sailing Boats”

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“The design challenge was, frankly, overwhelming.” Says a very tired, but very jubilant looking French guy wearing wire-frame glasses. Known in the design fraternity as l’homme d’idee his name is Jacques De Cacques, depending on how you say it. “To make a vessel that doesn’t rely on air conditioning or active ventilation, with an efficient hull form that still allows for ample deck space, to be propelled almost entirely by renewable energy sources? Mon dieu alors, you might as well ask us to make an affordable, two-wheeled method for people to get around easily without an engine!”

The result of the efforts of 437 fashionably-dressed workaholics labouring in beige cubicles for the last 38 years in a bunker under the Alps is a stunningly clever solution to the oldest problem known to mankind: How to yacht like a boss without being a total environmental asshole.

“It came to me right as I hit a personal and professional low spot in my life,” Confides Mr. De Cack, “I’d given up ever solving this design challenge. It had, in a word, beaten me to a bloody pulp. In despair I found myself walking across a very high bridge calculating which part I should jump off to most painlessly and effectively end my life with a minimum of mess. And I was about to do just that, go out in a sustainable heat source of glory, when I found myself struck by a sudden brainstorm. Looking down at the water far below and aimlessly watching some sort of extremely slow race between weird looking boats with no motors; I had an idea. What if we put a stick in the middle of a tear-drop shaped hull, tied some form of cloth to it, and pulled on it with bits of string or rope? What if we used,” here he pauses dramatically before beginning to nod encouragingly while windmilling his arms faster and faster, “The air.”

To call this idea revolutionary is to say Che Guevara liked living in the jungle. If this man is right, we may have been looking at the solution all along. It would be almost as though we’ve always known how to build sustainable boats that don’t leave a trail of destroyed eco-systems and exhaust in their wake. As though the answer to enjoying our oceans in sustainable comfort was some sort of simple solution that every child with a skateboard and a shopping bag has always known.

“The amazing thing about this idea is that it came to me whole.” Explains Jock. “Everything was answered all at once as I stood on that bridge and stared in the direction of those strange little boats that bear a strong resemblance to my prototype. For example: Apart from using the wind for propulsion, we could also employ it to ventilate the interior of the vessel.” With the use of a complicated diagram made in crayon he outlines how large scoops could catch the wind and push it below decks. “In my mind I call these dorades, but that’s just a working title. Also for light, we make these boats with just the one single deck. No stacking them like crappy wedding cakes that no one eats anyway. This way large hatches can be made that allow daylight in to the interior, eradicating the need for thousands of bulbs burning away inside. Bulbs that not only need electricity but give off heat at the same time that you are cranking the AC to try to cool the place down. Just chill man.” Here he tries, and fails, to high five The General Alarm.

But he goes on, a man with a vision that no one else sees, completely consumed. “The sky is the limit, or the wind really. You could probably put two of these hulls side-by-side with a deck system in between them to increase stability and available space. Maybe call it a dogamaran or something, I’m just throwing things out there. Are you taking notes? I can’t, my hands won’t stop moving. Anyway, the benefits of this idea are truly stupefying. Certainly the concept is extremely advanced, and too hard for the average person to grasp, but at its most simplest it is effectively this: Water clean, no good burn oil to go on water, stop burn oil, use air. Let me know if you need me to repeat that.”

Jack finished the interview by admitting he doesn’t expect the road to acceptance will be easy for his idea, and that he doesn’t anticipate he’ll see a ‘Sailing Boat’ on the water in his lifetime. “A notion like this is so revolutionary it could take hundreds or even thousands of years for civilization to become comfortable enough to use it without fearing it as some form of black magic. Eventually though, I believe the tide will turn and people will say, ‘Hey, we got all this air, why don’t we use it for something other than blowing our exhaust up our own noses when the apparent wind is coming from astern.”

10 Yacht Crew Starve To Death After Chef Leaves Boat For One Hour

CASTAWAY, from left: Amanda Donohoe, Oliver Reed, 1986, © Cannon Films

CASTAWAY, Amanda Donohoe, Oliver Reed, 1986, © Cannon Films

“I left it all ready. All they had to do was put the burgers in the bun. I even sliced the tomatoes for them.” Said a tearful yacht chef as she was led away for further questioning by the local police after a tragic incident which resulted in the deaths of 10 members of a yacht crew.

Early reports indicate the chef, an 8-year industry veteran who supposedly had never killed anyone before, had simply left the boat to attend a one-hour yoga class. It was one hour too long.

“It appears the captain tried to use a fire-ax to access the main galley fridge.” Said a local fire-fighter who responded to the call. “We also found a member of the engineering team with a blow-torch and a raw sausage in the engine room, but he seems to have been unable to light it, probably due to being too weak from hunger. It was a terrible scene. Even after all these years you don’t get used to something like that.”

“This could have been prevented.” Says Jamie Oliver, an ISM consultant who specializes in galley safety. “Usually we advise any vessel chef or cook who is departing the boat for a period of time greater than 30 minutes to leave emergency rations on hand. It doesn’t have to be fancy, a giant pot of spaghetti bolognaise will often do, or failing that a dozen pork chops in a pinch.”

A recent report by the MAIB, released just last month, highlights the dangers of Sudden and Spontaneous Starvation at Sea (SSSS). The report details the events that led to the deaths of 29 crew members on the oil tanker ‘Black Dawn’ after dinner was five minutes late. The immediate cause of the tragedy has been attributed to the cook taking a phone call from his brother, although questions have been raised about a lack of training that leads to crew being unable to feed themselves.

“A good vessel familiarization should include a demonstration of how to turn on the range, and basic instruction in emergency food-accessing devices such as a can-opener.” Advises Mr. Oliver. “Sudden and Spontaneous Starvation at Sea or SSSS,” here he makes a hissing sound, “Is a very real problem and one that should be taken seriously. Why in the hell are you laughing man?”

For the time-being most flag states are issuing emergency guidance on the subject, advising that packets of crisps of a variety of flavors be stowed at a distance no greater than 3 meters apart along all thoroughfares and in all accommodation spaces. Alternatively, for vessel’s concerned with the long-term health of their crew, the emergency feeding stations may contain fresh fruit, but these will have to be subjected to weekly checks.

“It is just simply unacceptable that in this day and age we have seafarers dying mere meters from sustenance.” Concludes Mr. Oliver. “Something has got to be done. And clearly that something isn’t expecting adults to know how to feed themselves.”

Maritime Security Co. Reveals Plan To Guarantee Safety Of Your Yacht This Summer From An ISIS Attack.

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“Basically if you are on the water, looking at the water, or thinking about the water this coming summer, ISIS is a threat to you, your neck, and any plans you had for the weekend.” Says maritime security consultant Duke Nukem, a retired expert in explosive statements, and now president of Lockdown Logistics, a security company specializing in yacht protection. This is the bad news, he explains. As we wait for the correlary ‘good news’ statement, he interrupts the interview to take a call on a mobile phone disguised as a hand grenade, leaving us wondering if there is, in fact, any good news at all.

“The good news,” Mr. Nukem says, returning his hand-grenade-phone gently to its cradle, having helped another large yacht captain decide whether to place their new gun turret on the fore or aft deck (both it turns out), “Is we have a three-step program designed to guarantee you and your yacht will not suffer a terrorist attack.” Simply put this plan consists of the following:

1) Sell your yacht
2) Forget you ever had a yacht.
3) Enter your bespoke bunker in the foothills of Colorado and don’t come out until you hear the secret knock as outlined in the Lockdown Logistics field guide.

While hard to argue that these steps won’t guarantee absolute security against a terrorist incursion – and conveniently against other such pitfalls as hurricanes, meteor strikes, and steadily increasing annual expenses as the yacht ages – these measures wouldn’t seem to offer a remedy to the threat of an ISIS attack for the wantonly reckless individuals who will insist on getting in a boat this coming summer. The question is put to Mr. Nukem’s team of senior managers, what of these?

“Luckily the various armed forces of the world continue to underpay their personnel, and send them to shithole places where they stand a decent chance of getting blown up.” Explains Smith Smith (real name withheld), team leader in Advanced Military Solutions for Lockdown Logistics. “This means that for any yacht thinking of an incursion into ‘enemy territory’, or the Mediterranean as you civilians call it, there is a large, well-trained workforce of professional soldiers available to man your vessel on contract. They can deploy in compact teams of one or two platoons, and will lay down a protective envelope of cover-fire while you swim, sail, or sleep in peace and comfort.” He adds that while this doesn’t guarantee your vessel won’t get attacked – he provides us with our third brochure of the day outlining the 3-step program to emphasize what will – it does mean you will have a better chance of actually surviving the upcoming season with most of the guests and crew you set out with.

These recommendations and prescribed action plans have met with mixed receptions from yacht captains and managers. While some are quick to embrace the emerging new ethos of luxitary (luxury-military for the uninitiated), others are less enthused. “Of course I can see that ISIS and other extremist groups pose a potential threat to yachts,” says one captain who asked not to be named and would only speak to us from behind a newspaper while speaking out of the side of his mouth. “Theoretically they pose a potential threat to my cat, my newsagent, my grandmother, and the very fiber of society. But what I can also see is that using this threat to create a culture of fear has ancillary benefits to a number of companies looking to get ahead in a tight market. I’m getting email blasts from suppliers of medical support about this for god’s sake. Yes, I can see a relation between on-call medical advice and an increase in the capability of groups dedicated to extreme violence, but at the same time I find it tenuous at best to imply that this is a reason I should sign up for a particular service. And at worst I think it smacks of profit-making by excessive fear-raising.” He then reminded us that we never had this conversation before disappearing back to his vessel to practice evasion techniques.

Yachting Industry Celebrates 400 Years Of Employment For People Who Can’t Stay In One Place

‘Twas on the 19th day of March, in the year sixteen-hundred and fifteen, with fog and plague adversely affecting visibility and the tide at half past the cockerel’s wattle, that the sailing yacht Serf’s Up was launched with a great deal of ceremony and throwing of things in the air. And while this initial sea trial suffered an inauspicious start – she ran hard aground and had to wait 200 years for the first working tug boat to be invented and pull her off – we nevertheless pay homage on the anniversary of this day as being particularly significant in the long and difficult battle for employment of those who cannot hold down a job.

On that very vessel the captain had previously been trained as a ‘Horseshoe-Thrower-and-Sharpener-of-Scissors’ (prior to the industrial revolution the second most popular trade, after only ‘Carrier-Of-Things’), as well as a draw-bridge operator, pub manager, dung burner, real estate agent, and wet nurse. None of the rest of that initial all-male crew (women weren’t allowed to see the ocean or use stairs in those times) had held a job for long enough to have to pack a lunch. Indeed, the three deckhands had been found that very morning aimlessly wandering the waterfront, uncertain of their plans for the day, or ensuing years. The record shows that none of the members of that deck crew had any experience in sailing but that they did have 21 fingers between the three of them, and all remained on the vessel long after it’s grounding and well into their retirement.

Little has changed in the four centuries since, with the modern day yacht crewmember often having tried numerous occupations, occasional military service, and – for those who can afford it – rehabilitation clinics prior to making their way to the yacht marinas of the world looking for work. And so it is in this spirit of ‘I’m Not Very Good At Staying Put, So Let’s Try A Job That Moves With Me’ that we celebrate today; the arbitrarily declared ‘400th Anniversary of Yachting’.

Worth considering is what the nearly 50,000 estimated yacht crew currently employed on the water would be doing had an industry not come along that allowed them to change locations, uniforms, phone numbers and lovers with greater frequency than their underwear. Clearly only so many people can sell ice cream out of bicycles, and in most places that’s seasonal anyway. No, the sad truth is many of these restless souls would have become pickpockets, dice-players and lorry drivers, adversely affecting the fabric of society in unseemly ways that even the heavily-armed police forces of today would have struggled to contend with.

To think nothing of the brokers, provisioners, dockmasters, strippers, chandlers, and storage facility owners who have come to rely on this industry for their bread and butter and jam and another serving of shelled pomegranate seeds please. They too would be without gainful employment, with the spin-off effects of this rippling through the economy to companies that make deck shoes, and crappy websites, and label makers. Without succumbing to hyperbole it would seem safe to say that without yachting we would have inevitably suffered an economic implosion and subsequently returned to the barter system.

So today, when you’ve knocked off (if employed), or finished pestering crew agents (if currently listed as ‘seeking’), raise a glass to the inaugural voyage of the inaugural yacht with her crew of itinerants who first found their way out to sea. Not to fish or transport goods or lob cannonballs and fire muskets at each other, but to polish things and see new places and occasionally annoy a wealthy person by not being able to procure perfection, despite having implied that they could. After all, without the pioneering work of this first yacht crew, 50,000 odd people would still today be wandering aimlessly on shore, where its considered a weakness, instead of at sea, where its considered a job requirement.

Entirety Of World’s Problems Solved By Yacht Crew While Eating Lunch

In a series of groundbreaking summits convened over a period of time known as ‘The Caribbean Season’, simple, effective solutions to all of the major issues plaguing humanity and the world in general have been found. As surprising as this announcement is in it’s own right, that these solutions were reached through casual debate by the crew members of a yacht, while meeting casually over lunch in the crew mess, is perhaps most surprising of all.

“It was easy once we got started.” Says Captain Reggie Forsythe, the man in charge of the high-stakes, low formality deliberations. “The news was up on the telly during lunch and we started talking about the events being reported. You know, just bouncing ideas around and challenging each other’s opinions. While none of us has any idea what we’re talking about, we quickly realized that we were able to cut right to the heart of complicated and nuanced problems just by using stereotypes and gross generalizations. Before lunch was over we had arrived at working solutions to a lot of problems that are supposedly difficult.”

When asked for examples, Capt. Forsythe provided the following:

“That missing Malaysian airways flight? Clearly they needed better equipment and should offer a substantial reward. If you put up enough money then every fisherman on earth will be down there with their echo sounders looking for unusual debris on the bottom. Shit, if those guys can still find fish to catch in these oceans then they can definitely find a plane. Then in terms of this business of migrants from Africa swamping Europe, it’s easy. Just don’t allow anyone from Africa a visa or status in Europe until it stops. They won’t come if they know there is no chance of being allowed to stay. And as for protecting our various homelands from Muslim extremists; just display caricatures of the prophet Mohammed at all border entry points to Western nations. If anyone gets visibly agitated about that, give them a one-way ticket back to where they came from. Job done.”

At first blush these solutions seem overly simplistic at best, and – in the case of the latter two – completely unrealistic with racist overtones. But Captain Forsythe was quick to set the record straight by unequivocally stating, “I’m no racist. I’m just a realist.” So that settles that.

As far as these straightforward solves being far too simple to actually be applicable, there are signs that the world of global diplomacy is ready for just such direct action, even if it is informed only by one biased news channel playing repeatedly in an unending loop on a television in the crew mess of a yacht.

“We’ve tried consensus building, we’ve tried in-depth studies and protracted conventions in an attempt to solve intractable problems.” Says John Kerry, Secretary of State for the United States. “And it isn’t working. Extremism continues to grow, ill-equipped boats full of hopeful migrants continue to sink in the Mediterranean sea, and we have no idea where flight MH370 ended up. Why not try the ideas these guys came up with over lunch? I don’t really know what a yacht crew do per se, or what their qualifications are for tackling geopolitical issues, but the fact that they seem pretty sure of themselves is good enough for me.”

Reached for further comment Captain Forsythe said he and his crew were enthusiastic about helping world powers. With a busy charter schedule coming up in the next few months he added that while he couldn’t promise that they would be able to resolve more than one or two historic problems per day, that being said, “We can always find time to throw our opinions around like they matter.”