Sunday, November 23, 2014

a little floor spice makes everything nice

My employer has 2 main classes of tugboats. The little ones are 3,000hp harbor tugs- sweet, maneuverable and versatile. Then there are the 4,200hp ocean-going tugs. Great for going in a straight line, but bred from the unholy union of a wrecking ball and a bulldozer. Too much ass, not enough rudder, really, for day-to-day maneuvering here at the Q, especially when handled by the tugboating equivalent of  being set up with a girl who's "got a great personality."

 Best tugboaters in the world would have a hard time making these pigs do what they're supposed to do. Not every 4200 driver is in competition for that title, anyhow. Some are pretty damn good. Some... not so much. Tonight's tugboat driver is an unknown. I've worked with him once before, and, the guy seems damn good.  Tugboats are festooned with rubber bumpers for a reason. They're made to be able to use the Braille method of navigation. "Am I close? How close am I? *SMASH* "OK, We're here."

 Our NY fleet is not like that, for the most part. There's some hellaciously good small boat handlers out there.

 Waiting for clearance to leave a dock, the tugboat comes up alongside us a little hard... and by a little hard, I mean it blew a large pot of soup clean off my stove and sent it 5 solid feet away from the stove before landing on deck. I checked. My galley deck looks like a crime scene, but the area around the stove is pristine.

 Anyhow, although I've been known to endorse the 5-second rule once or twice, there's no going back for about 4 meals worth of spicy tortilla soup. While there's no crying over spilled milk, there's not much choice when the living quarters' air is so spiced up that you can taste the soup just by breathing. Shit's burning the hell out of my eyes. I feel like I've been watching "Brian's Song" on repeat.

 Well, it'll be funny once the smell's gone. I got a sort-of laugh out of it. It'd be funnier if I wasn't hungry. I'm the only one awake right now... well, now I am, anyhow. I'm pretty sure that the sound of about 10lbs of soup and a 3-gallon steel pot achieving flight, not to mention 4,000 tons moving sideways about 5 ft in a 1/2 second probably wasn't something that you can sleep through.

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