Archive for March, 2010

Your tax money at work

March 30, 2010

This is Kaleb, who works for National Marine Fisheries Service.  I’d tell you who his side-kick is but I don’t think it can talk.  Kaleb is a lil’ bitch, who occasionally wanders out of the fancy new building up at the blackburn industrial park to teach us a little bit about what we do.  Typical ‘marine scientist’: just because he can identify a couple of fish out of a book he thinks he’s qualified to discuss how we should approach the new management regime.  Scott has asked me to limit my interactions with them because apparently I can’t behave.  I did manage to ask if they got overtime when it rained.

Yesterday I listened to Kaleb give Scott a verbal reach around about the obvious problems with sector management.  To bad he’s more than happy to grab ankle for anyone in his office selling sector management.  That coffee looks good.



March 27, 2010

Neil Young told me that it is better to burn out than fade away.

Practice what you preach, freak.


March 27, 2010

Over the last couple of weeks several different people have asked me: what is going on with these ‘sectors’?  My answer: I have no idea.  The most radical change in fisheries regulation since the beginning of national marine fisheries service, not to mention measures that could potentially put more than half of the day-boat fleet out of business is supposed to begin May 1st.  No one knows what, how or if any of these poorly planned and misguided ideas will be acted upon.  Scott has figured out our two options if this plan goes through: 1) We fish in a sector with allocation based on our fishing history…Allocation that will cut us back by 80% of last years landings.  2) We remain in the current ‘days at sea’ program, which will leave us with 24 days to fish per boat next year.  Farewell and ado to me fair Spanish lady…

Go to your happy place, Happy

March 27, 2010

My Happy place:

My reality for the next five days:

Ah, Carl Weathers.  How could your soothing voice and rugged good looks lead me astray?

Belated weekly drinking story

March 24, 2010

This story comes from a good friend of mine who we’ll call DP.  And while it is not one of the great stories of which he is a part, it did happen to a friend of his (whom we’ll refer to as X).  Enjoy.

X was happily married with two children, and one on the way.  With his lovely wife approaching her due date, X had been on call for about a week when one night he was sent out to grab dinner for the family.  He went down to a local pizza place, that happened to serve alcohol and ran into an old friend of his.  X called his wife asking if it would be alright if he had the pizzas delivered and sat for a few cocktails with his ol’ pal.  She was on board.

X and his ol’ pal made like a couple of frat boys, beers and shots.  We all know how long that lasts before the old autopilot takes over.  Well, with no knowledge of the nights events, X was surprised to wake up in a hospital bed with and awful hangover.  He was Even more surprised when a nurse handed him the newest edition to his family.  He was most surprised of all when he realized that he had pissed the bed.  Viola.

Just when you think…

March 24, 2010

When you work in a town like Gloucester, it can sometimes be a severe blow to your ego to realize that no matter what you do there is always someone working harder than you.  I came to terms with this my second year fishing after a 15 hour day.  We were selling our lobsters at about 6:30 pm, and I was exhausted.  I made a comment to the ‘lumper’ about how we deserved more money than the other fishermen because we were working longer hours.  He laughed, and let me know that there was another boat scheduled to arrive in two hours.  He also mentioned that the other boat had been on that schedule for seven straight days.

I mention this after two straight months of great fishing.  Running two boats, we haven’t come in without a limit of cod yet…a first for me when it comes to winter fishing.  We took only one trip today so that we could catch up on some maintenance (oil change, fuel filter change, general check-ups on  hydraulic systems) and get a little rest before the last seven days of our season.  During this short time working at the dock, I heard an ‘old-timer’ talking about the fishing 30 years back.  His schedule went like this: closed the bars at 1 am; grabbed three hours of sleep before leaving the dock at 4; fish all day for around 20,000 pounds of pollock and hoped to meet the lumpers by 10pm; If the fish prices were above .10c/lb. they would head to the bar for a couple of nightcaps before sleeping on the boat to do it all over again. 

The thought of handling 20,000 lbs of pollock every day for .10c/lb scares me.  That’s about half of what our boats make a day for 1600 lbs of cod these days.   I have to take all of this into consideration when I am trying not to yell at my boss, because as much as I hate to admit it, he’s done my job before and back when it was much more difficult.

Valuable life lessons

March 22, 2010

When your Friends from Uganda come over for dinner, there are two things you should never say/do:

1)  If one of their children can’t finish what’s on their plate, Do not say “There are starving kids in Africa”.  They already know.

2)  When the patriarch of the family asks “why are African-American men so lazy?” do not allow time for an awkward silence before changing the subject.

there is always one asshole

March 19, 2010

it just figures that the one chicken that is teaching all of the others how to jump the fence was named “Doug” by the neighbor kids.  Whata they gut a problem?

Oh, and if any of you are bored, I’ve got a couple of acres to rake.  I’ll buy the beer.  Hell, I’ll buy the meth if that’s what it takes.  No mom, I’m not on the meth.

The chief’s are moving to Florida? Bullshit!

March 19, 2010

So Sarah and I have made our reservations for our yearly vacation to Florida.  Its really a simple plan for us: She sits by the pool reading 100 books or walks the beach collecting way too many shells to bring home.  I fish.  I mean I really fish.  Bridges in the middle of the night; beaches at first light; wading the flats during the day.  Then we spend too much money eating too much food and drinking too much alcohol in the evening.  By the end of our stay, at least three things will have happened: A waitress will bring me one cigarette with the check even though she knows it will make Sarah mad.  A large black man in a bright purple suit will get a kick out of me and Sarah  grooving to his rendition of ‘The Thrill Is Gone’.  And the same old miserable douche-bag will complain about something that we do at the condo complex.  Ah, some people just don’t want to be happy.

Another highlight will be fishing with my good buddy John Meskouskas of Stuart fly-fishing.  I have been a guide; I have fished with guides; I have been in charge of the behavior and performance of guides;  It is not easy to find a truly good one, especially in Florida where every other guide is a pretentious douche with a pony tail and a bonefish earing.  The last thing I want to do is pay to fish with a guy that talks all day about how he is the best guide in Florida.  John is a laid back, down to earth guy.  He is by far the most accomplished photographer I know.  And on top of being a good fisherman, he is a great guide (there is a huge difference).  Check him out at

Aunt Flow

March 17, 2010

Stop the press…The Ipswich river is flooding down town.  Look out for the pub, bitch.