Friday, February 3, 2017

Bob and Paul go fishing

 In my yoot, I walked away from a lot of good jobs to go lobstering every spring.

  I got serious about it after grad school, when I realized that I didn't want to be a scientist anymore, and that being a policy administrator was no longer open to me for moral reasons, environmental policy administrators mostly being venal, self-serving and parasitic sons of whores who destroy their hosts to collect a government salary paid in blood, with a goal to destroy the people whom they reign over via boot to neck (I've got a childhood friend who's a fairly higher up admin at NOAA. I hope he's still an exception, though we've grown apart and haven't spoken for years, I'd still count him a friend, I suppose. Can't say I much respect his employers).

    I had already been a season out of grad school and mostly settled on being a fisherman when I started working for Bob and his dad. I had been fishing the year before with Chuck Z, another lobsterman down the dock, and mostly enjoyed it, though I got a hair across my ass when a friend from the New England Aquarium recruited me to design a build a small-footprint fish farm in Boston, and I spent 6 months doing that, and relearned why I wanted to be a lobsterman after all.

 At this point, being in my mid-20's, still a polite person, not messing with drugs and being a mild drinker, getting a job meant walking from one end of the marina's fishing pier to the other and saying hi to people. Being a sternman on a lobsterboat is not exactly a high-demand job. Passing by the RITA C, a big white newish boat, I got to talking with Bob, the captain, who was a childhood friend of my brother. I met his father, who knew of me, (I worked 150 feet away on other boats on and off for the last 8 years after all). We talked about fishing, and fisheries management, and I admitted that I swam around that pond a bit and found it horrifying.
 Anyways, end result was that I had a job, starting the next day. Other than trips to sea on ships during the off season (which eventually became my full time gig), I found a home.
      Bob's dad gradually went back to semi-retirement, coming out to bait bags and band lobsters and shoot the shit with us every now and again. From there, Bob and I would work together for the next 8 years, becoming partners in the process, and eventually I would be captain on the RITA C, when Bob got a job running a research boat.

 Still the best job I ever had.

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