Sunday, January 17, 2021

Honey, Vinegar and me.

 Tonight's cargo discharge was a frustrating one. 

       The ship is owned by the largest shipowning company in the world. They're so big that they own the ship, the terminal we were at, and also the oil company we were carrying fuel for. 

           Tonight kicked my ass, or maybe it's better to say that my response to tonight's events kicked my ass. I am hoarse from a LOT of yelling. My voice is breaking like a 12-year old's at anything louder than a whisper at the moment. 

       It was one of the assistant engineers on the ship in question. 

           Now, it's not nice to say, but the caste system is still very much in play aboard many  ships that have all-Indian officers. It's enough of an issue that the International Maritime Organization, the UN's excuse for having conferences in the most beautiful places in the world twice a year, has devoted time and some of their fun money at it... and I'm not going to go into it and get called a racist, but when I see it, I don't like it. I don't see much further through a brick wall as the next man, but I see a bully, truth is I want to throw a shackle at his head. 

     So after witnessing a mixed crew of Indian/Pakistani (I don't know) crew getting shat upon from a great height, I was less inclined to be cooperative than I normally am. Oh, I have a job to do, and I'm not going to do anything unsafe or illegal, but after more years than I like to think about, I know the law where it comes to my trade, and I know the exact words on the contract between the ship and the HQ. 

 Let's just say I said 'no' a lot. And that I was very picky. And when the engineer in question wanted to use my crane to help him move a couple hundred pounds of oil transfer hose, I was not disappointed to tell him that my responsibility is to get my hose to his deck edge and only that.  Normally I like using our big cargo crane. I'm a whiz with that thing, and being immature, I like using big toys. But hell no. 

 You know that feeling like when you meet someone with just an absolutely punchable face, someone you immediately dislike for no reason?  Imagine that feeling but you've also seen them being a gigantic asshole to their shipmates too. 

    So I was in an awfully foul mood all night, and it wasn't until we sailed after the job was done that I realized that I need to take ownership of that feeling of residual anger and annoyance. Once I registered that the guy was a donkey, any emotional issues related to that are all on me. There was no reason for me to get pissed off enough that one d-bag could ruin my night. Why give that much of myself? 

 Anyways, while we were sailing off, I had my workboots half-off, unlaced and just on my feet loosely, as my feet were sore, and I realized I had left about 5 gallons of used motor oil from the last oil change on one of my generators, and it was sitting in a big, shallow pan. I ran out, unlaced boots, and marched that big, ungainly pan over to the waste oil barrel, and promptly dumped about a quart of motor oil DIRECTLY into one of my boots. And on my foot, and leg, too, of course. And the generator house deck. 

    By the time we were at the anchorage to drop the hook, to await the next job, I had cleaned up, but the oil in my boot was enough to shock me out of my mad-on. Like stepping on a banana peel, I guess, I feel better now. 

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