Napoleons Casino & Restaurant - Visit Hull

JoJo's Bizarre Adventure OC Tournament #5: Round 1 Match 13 Glitch Vs Laverne

The results are in for Match 11. The winner is…
The Graveyard Shift, with a score of 70 to Underground Exodus’s 64!
Category Winner Point Totals Comments
Popularity The Graveyard Shift 18-12
Quality The Graveyard Shift 22-20 Reasoning
JoJolity Underground Exodus 20-22 Reasoning
Conduct TEAM 10-10
As things settled, it was hard to tell if it was a fight that had occurred or purposeful demolition. In the middle of it all, sitting atop of one of the only remaining operational washers near the back, Byte had helped himself to a bag of SunChips from the destroyed snack machine as he waited for the load of linens to finish it’s final spin. Thanks to a last-second LOAD, he looked just about no worse for wear, standing out like a sore thumb amongst the carnage. He took the few minutes of relative silence to reflect, his gaze passing over his unconscious opponent laying face-down on the damp floor.
“Boy, that escalated quickly.” His token stream-of-consciousness mumbling coming through even with a mouth full of chips, “I guess it really does kill some people to be patient. I wonder how much it’ll be to fix this place? Fira better be damn happy for all this, maybe I should ask for a raise. Are there any sodas layin’ around-”
Just as the Mandible hopped down to his feet to look for a beverage, the front door of the laundromat swung open, causing Byte to duck down out of reaction. He was expecting company, but had hoped to be long gone before they showed. An amazingly tall suit-vested man stands in the door frame with a look of shock and wonder on his face, tattoos of ‘shading’ adorning his shaved head to make it seem oddly angular. He lets out a long whistle as he strolls in, surveying the damage. “Sweet mother of FUCK, what happened in here?!” Byte knew how bad this all looked, knowing he’d need some kind of cover if he had hopes of fooling the Syndicate capo, so without hesitation deftly smashes his own hand with his hammer. The pain was tremendous, but he manages to keep the screams internal as he bolts up from his spot.
“Kilroy! Thank god you’re here!” Byte lied, holding his now broken hand weakly as he puts on an air of hopeless panic. “You shoulda seen this lady! She was flying all over the place, smashing into walls like some kinda monster! Completely tore up the place!”
Kilroy hurried his pace at the sign of a survivor, moving to get in close. “’re from that restaurant, right? The one that stiffed the elders? The hell are you doing here?” The tall man nearly trips on the unconscious body of Marlin, only further adding to his confusion.
“Our machine is shot at the restaurant, I came here to clean some stuff.” Byte motions to the active machine with his broken hand, inciting a wince that he exaggerates for effect. “Then that... Monster came in and just started destroying the place! I dunno how she was putting these holes in the walls, it was insane!”
Kilroy stooped over the chain-bound woman’s unconscious form, nudging her head lightly with a finger before shaking his head. He crouches down for a closer look, mumbling under his breath, “Wonder what these chains do…”
Byte’s eyes shoot wide, managing to keep his thoughts internal for a change. When Kilroy dropped into Elephant Bones the other week, he made no hint toward being a stand user himself, even saying that the Syndicate is actively hunting them down. Byte had even successfully SAVEd a copy of the capo to see what he had on him; did he deliberately let Byte do so? Just what the hell is the Syndicate about?
“So you took her down by yourself?” The question snapped Byte out of the parade of questions in his head, meeting Kilroys glance with his own. Suddenly Byte had a very strong feeling that he shouldn’t stick around any longer, and moved to go retrieve his wash which had thankfully just ended.
“Uhh, yeah! I got lucky with a swing of the hammer, caught her as she was spinning around…” Byte’s mind raced for an exit as he pulled the damp linens free, every minute he hung around here was endangering everyone back at the base. ”Listen, did you need me for anything, or can I head back? Fira needs these ASAP and I’m already running behind, she can be a real nightmare when she’s pissed.”
Kilroy laughed, his disposition seeming oddly bright. “I know exactly what you mean, I kinda wanna clear out before the boss gets here myself.” Byte gulped. “Shouldn’t you at least dry those things? Maybe get that hand looked at?”
They both glanced over at the destroyed rows of dryers, to Byte’s relief, not a single one seemed to be in working order. “Nah, we got first aid back at the gym. And I think our dryer still works.” Bundling up the linens back into their garbage bag, Byte heads for the door. “Good luck with all this, and uhh, hope we can see you back at-”
“One more question, if you don’t mind.” Byte froze as he reached the door at Kilroy’s suddenly raised voice, the guy was pretty unstable when he paid them a visit, too. “Did you happen to see the Archbishop during the fight? Big guy in blue robes, probably handing out change.”
Oh god, a witness. Byte shook his head. “He left before she came in. Went that way.” He pointed down the street, still inching out of the building. Kilroy seemed relieved, waving at the Mandible as he returned to surveying the scene.
Byte immediately broke into a speed-walk, heading down the street and away from danger, cursing his luck at rock paper scissors the entire way.
People continue to fight for petty reasons, in this match and the recently-concluded one, but when this goes up, there is still yet a day yet to vote in a match of performers and their supporters spreading a message of love.
Outside The Devil Blue, Waterfront District, 11:46 AM
The past few weeks had been odd for the staff over at the Elephant Bones and Duke’s Gym. Ever since Shelldrake’s encounter against that ice-flinging man over at the Los Fortuna Airport, they’d found themselves in more and more conflicts against other stand users, and had heard about many more taking place in various parts of the city.
The knowledge of these encounters, and the realization that the rest of the staff could very well end up in more of these very soon made a certain sense of unease hang over the restaurant. The utter chaos that surrounded it every day didn’t change, but it peered through in those rare moments of quiet, as much as some of them liked to ignore and forget it.
It was for that reason that Tiger “Glitch” Ricky made her way over to The Devil Blue, despite the high end resort’s “vibes” being as far away from the Elephant Bones’ as possible. The moment London overheard something about a supposed underground doctor working from the confines of the resort and notified the rest of the team, Glitch bolted outside the restaurant and made her way over to it as quickly as possible. As entertaining as it was, the whole “taking Shelldrake to the vet to heal his broken wing” debacle made the team realize the necessity of alternative treatments for stand related injuries.
Glitch knew that the treatment would likely be incredibly expensive and far out of her or her teammates’ paychecks, but keeping it in mind for any emergencies could certainly help in the future, right? And worst case scenario, if she found nothing, at least she’d be able to help herself to some delicious grub!
Then again, she had no idea where to find this supposed clinic.
Glitch leaned down on her cane, summoning Vida Loca and looking at the area around her. She was in the middle of a large plaza, The Devil Blue’s entrance in front of her. Behind her was the ferry station which she’d just arrived from, and to her sides were many stores and restaurants selling a variety of goods. Glitch kept these spots in mind for the near future, thinking about the delicious food they contained and making sure to figure out how to get her hands on some of it.
Truthfully, Glitch didn’t have much of an idea of what the hell she was planning on doing, but that didn’t matter, because she never did. She hopped around the plaza and the surrounding alleyways, keeping an ear out for the rustling of food packages amidst the sea of noises while exploring them, “helping herself to” (stealing) a few packets of chips for herself along the way. After enough skittering around, she made her way through an alleyway, Vida Loca alongside her, the gargantuan cat squeezing tight to fit, and blocking the path through. They were near an odd building - though it was an “information center” for the nearby nature reserves in the archipelago, it seemed unreasonably large to be solely for such a thing.
“Umm… Excuse me, miss!” An upbeat man’s voice could be heard coming from in front of Vida Loca, the stand separating between him and Glitch. “I’m trying to pass here, and your stand is in the way! It’s important, you know - I’ve gotta meet with Hull! Oh, wait, you probably don’t know who he is, right? He’s… uh... The own- wait no, I should stop before I accidentally reveal something too confidential, haha-” Before the man could finish his rambling, Glitch started climbing onto Vida Loca’s back, peering at the man from above.
From what she could make out, the man was blond and of average height. Vida Loca’s face, meanwhile, was squeezed into the nearby wall and facing the direction opposite him, so tapping into its senses wasn’t much of an option. “Hmmmmrgh...” Glitch let out an odd noise, legs wiggling and moving about as she climbed up more and more, until she found herself sitting on the stand. She then tried to climb on top of it in an attempt at looming over the man, before nearly slipping off, frantically struggling before using some vibrations to stop her in place and sitting down. She looked over at the man’s blurred face, making out a wide grin, which she responded to in kind. “Hehe,” maybe this man had information that would be useful for her.
“See, I’m looking for an underground clinic for stand users or something like that. Should be around here, but I can’t find it! I’ve been looking for so long that I managed to snatch three packets of crisps already!” as if to accentuate the number, she put her arm forwards and raised three fingers “And crisps are great! But I want to find this clinic as well!” Glitch raised her arms into the air in exasperation. “Now, if you tell me where the clinic is, or help me find it in some other way, I’ll get Vida Loca to let you pass! Does that sound good?”
There was a slight pause as the man tilted his head, before breaking out into laughter. “Hahaha! Wow, that’s one hell of a deal! About the clinic, I’m afraid to say that you’re gonna have to wait a bit more! See, it’s actually right here,” he says, pointing at a nearby, unassuming door “and I help run it, but we’re closed for the next hour! Me and Peres have some work to do and meetings to attend, so you’ve gotta wait! Don’t worry though, I’ll make it up to you - I’ll let your crisp stealing slide for now, haha!” Another fit of laughter.
Glitch’s expression shifted into a pout. So she was stuck here for another hour? Bleh! Seeing her expression, the man chuckled again “What’s the problem? I’m sure you’ll find something fun to do here for an hour, you know. Well, it probably won’t all be very legal, and the guards here might try to kick you out, but that’s not something I gotta deal with so I don’t really care, haha!” With that final sentence, the man crouched forwards and deftly ducked under Vida Loca’s body and between its tall legs, passing through.
“See ya!” Turning around, he waved to Glitch with a smile and walked back into the crowds of the plaza. “Plrrrgh…..” Glitch grumbled to herself, thinking about what she could do for the hour. She did overhear some of the resortgoers over in the plaza talking about going to the pool, so that could be fun. Sure, she was almost 100% sure that she wasn’t allowed in there, but what was the harm in sneaking in, eh?
She hopped off of Vida Loca, and with a pep in her step, began making her way over to one of the resort’s pools.
The ferry to the Devil Blue, Waterfront District, roughly 11:30 AM.
Laverne Cassiel wasn’t one to show it well, but they were definitely feeling slightly on edge here, and internally, criticising such an attitude. You can’t be on edge when you’re going to a luxury resort… You’re supposed to be at your best of moods when you go to do something nice, something extravagant… People will know that something is off, something is the matter.
Though troubled, it was not on their face nearly as much as they’d thought, however; it wasn’t so much that people were avoiding them based on a bad mood, so much as one did not talk to strangers on a ferry so much as they spoke to strangers on a bus, but also multiplying that by the disconnect of opulence towards those ‘not worth’ associating with.
“You hear about the prices on Niters? I’ve been absolutely dying to give these a try, demand is higher than ever, and the supply just… Tanks? What’s with that?” A random guy, hipster-looking, foodie, maybe, was complaining to a similarly bougie-looking friend, shaking his head.
The other man nodded, groaning. “I hear you, I hear you so hard… I wasn’t going to eat the stuff, seafood is against my diet, but I was going to prepare such wonderful pictures of a Niter Blowfish Tartare for my food blog… I’d already put down my deposit, contacted a local photographer and everything! I’ll have to get into their kitchens and find some, no matter the price, or my clout is ruined.”
Laverne had seen pictures of the stuff, and frankly, that guy was a moron if he thought it possible to make those things even remotely photogenic, even if he was probably making the right call not wanting to put it in his mouth; if Laverne ever had the opportunity, they would sure as hell wait for the other guy to take a bite. Had they heard it right, though? They were harder to find now or something?
Of course it made sense for the Devil Blue to get them in lighter capacity, if anyone in the area was, but what could be causing the shortage, so soon after they seemed to be becoming more common than ever? There was apparently an incident of sorts here not a few days ago, though people were keeping shush on just what the hell was going on because of that.
Honestly, Laverne didn’t actually care all that much. Their assessment was that it related to whatever in the area would sometimes cause people to ‘disappear’, and whatever that was was probably injured or forced to retreat now (not dead… If it was dead, the supply would stop entirely, which was not the case) and ODIN was trying to keep the news quiet. Least the news made it a lot more comfortable for them to travel by ferry for what they really cared about that day: this Devil Blue resort apparently had a clinic which serviced the Stand-using underground. Doubtless, in times of growing strife like these, a place like that would be an informational hotbed, tactically vital to get in good with.
Though even the decision to investigate that today had been an improvised one, determined on the spot to be a sound tactical decision for one tipping point of a reason: they were being followed, and needed to get the hell away from that.
Roughly an hour ago - Sound’s Garden, near Heartache Casino
For the past several days, the members of Red Carpet Renaissance had all a strange feeling about them. While always it seemed there were eyes upon them in Los Fortuna, for some reason, it had been different in recent days. There was a particular sense to everyone that there was someone, specifically following them, and nobody knew who it could be, or why.
Laverne, though they had yet to report this, had a feeling about where it came from, correlating when it started: it began the day after Kimijo Kaneko went to investigate that damn baseball game. Sure, some people on that chat program were doing their moral grandstanding about what happened there, pretending they’re better than that, that her opponent being a good man makes any of what she did different from every damn fight every damn day in this city, but all of them, it seemed, were at least for the moment wise enough not to put their money where their mouth is and actually follow up on it, and if they had, they’d probably be in some nightmare backroom right now.
This feeling, it was different, as if someone had started to take the entire team more seriously… Which, itself, meant a lot to unpack.
They had actually been trying to follow a sheepish event manager’s association with the owner of the casino that day, see if they couldn’t find something worth blackmailing him over and making him feel ‘indebted’ to them, but that case hadn’t been going smoothly as it could, and as they combed over the area, that is when they saw ‘them.’
A thin figure clad head-to-toe in black, jacket zipped up with a fuzzy-looking trim, biker gear, with orange underneath, and a distinct-looking helmet that looked like something out of a science-fiction film, mouthpiece something like a helmet of armor, visor black, lines and circles along the surface. The morning light reflected off of the visor hard enough to make Laverne squint. This person sat upon a sleek-looking sports bike, revving it at them.
When Laverne looked their way, the figure seemed to drive away, but kept showing up throughout the area, and more and more, Laverne got the distinct feeling this person was exactly the bad news they were waiting for…
They had to lose them.
So naturally, Laverne did just that, utilizing their Stand in a diversionary effort that seemed to successfully draw the figure away, and figuring that an offshore hotel was just the place to lose a biker for a little while. Besides that, within a few minutes of their reflection, the ferry wasn’t a minute away from reaching port at the Devil Blue. They could focus on this now, and not that bastard.
“H-hey, check this out! Someone’s driving on the water!”
The hipsters were speaking to one another, one handing the other a set of binoculars to look out on the waters due North of them, towards the mainland. The other, then, remarked in alarm. “Oh, my god! Is that the Black Angel, here? Oh, ooh, what a sight, what a sight!!”
“It definitely is, look at that!”
“Lemme see,” Laverne said, speaking up now before going ahead and seizing, with little resistance, the binoculars still around the first guy’s neck, going wide-eyed at what appeared on the other end.
The damn motorcycle was uneasily yet consistently making its way along the water, tires spinning as it raced forward against the momentum of the waves. The rider was the same, and what Laverne had read as a trim of fuzz around the upper torso of their jacket, now, flying just behind them as they advanced like a pair of short wings.
Shit, seriously?
Fucking hell, of course it’s a Stand or a Stand User or something.
Would Laverne have to fight on the way to this place..?
Wait, no, never mind. As they looked around, they saw the ferryman overhear just that, muttering into a radio too far, too quietly, to hear them, but close enough to see that the words ‘angel’ were being mouthed on their lips.
Ah, the island was close at hand, certainly closer to arrive at than this ‘Black Angel’ was fast, and some strong-looking people were coalescing around the ferry docks.
Keeping it cool, as the boat found its way to a stop, Laverne walked away, the sounds in the fading distance of a woman saying, “did you forget already? You’re not welcome on this island. Set so much as a wheel on the pavement before this resort you approach, and you know what comes next.”
Though the future was uncertain on whether or not they would cross paths again, for the rest of their time on the island, that was the last Laverne Cassiel saw of the Black Angel. Preliminary research made security seem lax here (they don’t deal with VALKYRIE at all, which is… Rare, for a high-profile private business like this), but it seemed they were just holding out for the important things… They couldn’t help but crack a private grin at how this poor bastard had followed them all this way, only to get turned away near instantly. Haha! Victory: Laverne. Serves you right for wasting my morning! Now, onto making use of this new place..!
They soon, like Glitch, learned that this ‘Peres’ was out, that they couldn’t get into the clinic without either breaking and entering (not that they were morally above it, but it wasn’t necessary) or waiting for that point…
Well, they’d come to a resort island, and knew for the time being that they were completely safe, so why not try to live a little to kill time?
A pool within The Devil Blue, Waterfront district 12:02 PM
Upon sneaking her way over a fence and into the resort’s pool, Glitch found herself with a severe case of choice paralysis. She stood out like a sore thumb, sprawled out on a lounger, ear perched out, picking up on and discerning between the wide variety of going-ons at the pool with a mischievous grin on her face the whole time. She could start off by taking a plunge, or perhaps use Vida Loca to get someone else to take one, or maybe go on a trip to the bar for a snack, or do one of the million other ideas that popped into her head!
“Heheh- oh!” before she could get too comfortable, she heard something very interesting - the sound of someone jumping over the fence, just like she had previously done. “Hmmm….” summoning Vida Loca for a better look, she saw Laverne, catching the investigator right in the middle of a decidedly illegal act. Not that Glitch cared, or even knew much about this odd person, but her interest had certainly been piqued.
Just as Glitch had taken notice of Laverne, so did they take notice of her, or more precisely, of Vida Loca’s massive form, staring right at them. With a quick shuffle they attempted to get out of the stand’s sight, preferring to avoid any unnecessary encounters with other stand users in what was supposed to be their way of killing time. However, Glitch wasn’t going to let them get away, and Laverne quickly found her right on their trail, wanting something to do with them. Instead of running away and possibly drawing more attention to themselves, Laverne opted to wait for Glitch to arrive.
And arrive she did, hopping towards Laverne and stopping in front of them, leaning in to get a close look at them and letting out an curious “Hmmrgh...” , which Laverne responded to by leaning back and putting a distance between them and this nuisance. “Do you want something, miss...?” they asked, faking confusion. With any luck, this person will leave them alone and they’ll be able to go on with their day.
“Glitch! I couldn’t help but overhear you jumping over the fence to get in, so I decided to go over and greet you! I did the same thing, you see, hehe...” She said, giggling to herself. Laverne looked back at them, a straight face hiding their annoyance at Glitch’s harassment.
“And I’m Laverne. I do believe that it’s best to keep a low profile in these situations, so it’s best for us to stay away from each other. If we make a scene and are caught, we’ll be kicked out of here, and I’m sure you’d rather-” “Boooooooooooooring!” Glitch interrupted Laverne with a loud shout, attracting the attention of some of the resortgoers, who’d begun murmuring between themselves. Laverne knew they needed to get away from this person if they wanted to stay in the resort.
“Hmm. Feel free to do whatever you want, Glitch, but I’m just here to relax, so I’ll be keeping a low profile. Here, take this and go find something fun to do.” Laverne said, taking a ten dollar bill out of their wallet and tossing it in the air, leaving Glitch to chase after it while they slunk away.
Glitch, on her end, was quite pleased by the bribe, and immediately found herself spending it all on snacks which she quickly gobbled up. With the bribe money and snacks gone, she once again found herself thinking of what to do, keeping an ear out for interesting occurrences. A little boy slipping into the pool, an arguing couple, Laverne talking with a staff member about something…
She decided to focus on the latter, and managed to pick up on their conversation. Laverne was mentioning some sort of nuisance that had snuck into the pool, a short woman who was currently in the- wait. They were talking about HER, weren’t they?! They were trying to get her kicked out!
Gasping out loud at the sheer audacity, Glitch was utterly shocked! This person, whom she had seen as a kind benefactor who had given her spending money, a comrade who had snuck into the resort just like she had, was trying to get her kicked out! “Hrrrggh…” She growled in annoyance. Laverne had just made this personal! They were trying to get her kicked out? Nonsense! She’d get them kicked out instead!
Laverne, meanwhile, hadn’t been successful in getting the staff to escort Glitch out of the premises. Something about them not having “sufficient evidence”, apparently. They turned over to look at her, only to realize that she had caught onto their attempts, as evidenced by her angry expression and the fact that her stand was out, staring at them as well. She pointed over to Laverne menacingly, her body language practically screaming ‘I’ll get you kicked out instead, just you wait!’.
“Tch,” This wasn’t perfect, but no matter. Laverne looked around the pool area, taking everything in. The positions of the employees, the items in the area, and the resortgoers… All predictable. The one anomaly was her, Glitch. She seemed so odd, with her utterly simple desires and her desire to one-up them. Laverne was an expert of deduction, but their expertise was completely unnecessary when it came to trying to tell what this woman was thinking.
She wanted to challenge Laverne? So be it. They were sure they weren’t going to lose.
OPEN THE GAME! (credit to magistelles for the image!)
Location: A fenced-off area with two pools, one regular (20x48) pool and one diving pool (20x20, very deep), one of many such areas within The Devil Blue. The whole area is 80 meters long and 44 meters wide, each tile being 4x4 meters. The light grey areas on the map are the walkways, and the light green ones are grassy areas on the side of the pool. The dark grey paths going over the pool are bridges, tall enough that they can be passed under. The purple rectangles indicate the positions of the diving boards, one being 1 meter tall, one being 5 meters tall, the final being 10 meters tall. The brown tiles represent the bar area.
All across the pool’s perimeter on the walkways, there are many lounging chairs for relaxation and umbrellas for shade, with resortgoers occupying many of them. A few are situated on the grass as well. Some of the resortgoers have left their bags on the loungers, containing a variety of different items that one might take to the pool, alongside cash and their room keycards. There’s also the bar area, serving basic food and drinks to whomever may need it, provided they have the cash for it.
Goal: Get the employees in The Devil Blue to kick your opponent out! If you act overly suspicious, the resort employees will ask you for your room keycard and attempt to investigate you.
While the employees won’t bother you unless you bother them first, they’ve got a few rules they expect you to keep:
  • You must have a keycard to be within the pool
  • Don’t bother or attack the other resortgoers and ruin their stay
  • Don’t carry any dangerous objects within the pool area
  • Don’t destroy any resort property
If the employees spot you breaking any of the rules, or are given evidence of you doing so, they will begin questioning you and ask for your room keycard. If one is shown to them, they will let you off with a warning, and if one isn’t, they will kick you out. After you’re let off with a warning, you will be kicked out if you’re reported and approached an additional time.
Additional Information: Resortgoers can be found all around the area, with 222 physicals and a 3 in “dear god just let me calm down in peace”. Unless you’re really annoying them, they’ll try to ignore you and go on with their lives, and if you do annoy them enough, they’ll complain about you to the employees.
The employees are situated mostly around the bar area and around the gates, but are also dotted around the perimeter of the pool, overlooking the goings-on of it, though they’re situated sparsely enough that there’s substantial “deadzones” that their sight doesn’t ordinarily cover. They have 222 stats, and a 4 in collective memory - they communicate with each other efficiently, remember your faces and which keycard you supposedly have, and will call you out if they spot you breaking any of the rules multiple times.
Any stand users that are currently within the area, if there even are any, don’t seem to really care about you letting your stands out and won’t pay it any mind. However, if any resortgoer is injured in a severe capacity due to your stands for a reason that can’t be explained away as anything else, the pool will be closed and you will lose the match.
Team Combatant JoJolity
Graveyard Shift Tiger “Glitch” Ricky “My tail is second only to my face! I want to rub it on my teeth and then lick it back all pretty!” Though Laverne has interrupted your plans somewhat, the reason you came to the pool in the first place was to have fun, and you’re not gonna let that change! Make sure to have as much fun as possible while trying to get Laverne kicked out!
Red Carpet Rennaisance Laverne Cassiel “Look! My right hand! It turned back into wood again! It’s not gonna turn back into a hand anymore! This is bad, Toshizaku!” As opposed to Glitch, you’re not the type to be so blatant about your actions and attempts at kicking Glitch out. Remain subtle throughout your strategy, make sure that your clay statues aren’t exposed for what they truly are in front of the bystanders!
Link to the Official Player Spreadsheet
Link to Match Schedule
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submitted by Dungeon_Dice to StardustCrusaders [link] [comments]

OBLIGATORY FILLER MATERIAL – Just take a hard left at Daeseong-dong…6

After the third pony keg of beer was delivered, it was decided that the next few days would be spent in the conference room discussing what we thought was the best way forward.
We wanted dry-erase boards so we could start taking detailed notes, even though I was well ahead of the curve in that regard. We instead ended up with some mobile elementary-school blackboards and a pile of grainy, sooty chalk.
Leave it to Dr. Cliff to go into a discourse on the genesis of chalk and its economic importance.
Bloody carbonate geologists.
Bloody White Cliffs.
We geologists need to punctuate their conversations with pictures, so these would suffice quite well.
At 1700 hours, the official end to the workday was called; we’d meet here again tomorrow. I’m not certain by whom, but it was readily agreed upon. We were more or less on our own until 1000 the next day. I needed to spend some time in my room with my notes and update a number of dossiers, field notebooks, and other items I was using as a running chronicle.
Several folks decided to invade one of the hotel’s restaurants for dinner. Some wanted to head to the casino, a couple wanted to get a massage, and others wanted to do what tourists are normally wont to do on the second day of being a foreigner in a foreign land.
I declined invitations to dinner and other activities, as I had a long writing session in front of me. I wanted to get this all in its proper place while the memories and notes were still fresh.
30 minutes later, in my room after a 25-minute wait for the elevator; I’m updating dossiers, creating several new ones, and updating my field notebooks. Suddenly, after an hour’s work, I notice something is amiss.
“I don’t have a drink or a cigar,” I said to the four walls. “This. Will. Not. Do.”
I was used to Happy Hour in Russia. Happy hour is slightly different; there are no ice cubes or orange-peel twists in the vodka. Also, it lasts all day.
I remedy that situation by finding and clipping a nice, oily oscuro cigar and digging the bourbon out from under my boxer-briefs in my dresser drawer. I heft the bottle and feel that it’s significantly lighter than when I left it last night. I happen to look in the trash can and spy the wrapper for a box of my festively colored Sobranie cigarettes I obtained back in Dubai.
“Hmmm”, I think, “It would appear that we have some light-fingered Cho Louies or No Louises around here. I’d best guard my supplies a little more securely.”
I move all my smokeables into one of my now emptied aluminum travel cases. They lock with the stoutest of combinations and it will be readily apparent if anyone is fucking with them.
I move some of my best booze into the pretty much worthless in-room safe. With a deft application of duct tape, I seal the safe. It may not be the most secure spot on the planet, but if anyone tries anything troublesome, they’ll leave an immediately recognizable record of what they were up to. It’s just too obvious; they’d have to be crazy to go in after anything inside there.
My money, keys, and passports are in the safe deposit box down in the lobby that the hotel supplies for visiting dignitaries. Even so, they let me keep my shit in one of them anyway.
That handled, I spend another hour writing like a madman. I suddenly realize I’m tired of all this and need a diversion as well as some food and, of course, drink.
30 minutes later, I’m down in the byzantine basement tunnels of the hotel. It’s crowded with hordes of Chinse tourists, and the casino is ground zero for the incredibly loud chatter.
I look in on the bowling alleys all three of them, and they’re full. The massage parlor is hopping, although I leave my name and they promise they will call over the PA when a suitable masseuse is available. Evidently, I ‘intimidate’ some of the more demure ones.
I wander over to the bar, now there’s a surprise, and see it’s packed to the rafters as well. I decide to wait for a seat to open up on Mahogany Ridge when there’s some gargling over the PA and a pair of Chinese nationals leave the bar in great haste.
I grab one of the two newly open seats, much to the chagrin of a couple of Oriental Unidentifiables (OU) who had their eye on them as well.
“Sorry, mate”, I said, “First come, first served. It’s the capitalist way.”
One of the pair grabs a seat and the other just stands there, looking annoyed unspent bullets in my direction. Forget that I’ve literally twice their size and could be an aberration as an angry American. They just order a couple of drinks, and content themselves in giving me dirty looks and probably say nasty things in their own indecipherable language about my national origin and familial heritage.
As if I gave the tiniest of rodental shits.
I fire up a cigar, as literally everyone else in the joint was smoking something more or less tobacco. However, there was a definite barnyard aroma, a regular Dairy Air, in the room. I think some of what was being smoked there was more bovine or equine in origin than botanical in nature.
With numerous hilarious attempts at Korean, pointing at a garishly photographed drinks menu, I was finally served a cold draft house steam porter and 100 milliliters of probably ersatz ‘Russian’ vodka, vintage late last Thursday. This bartender that could at least form some of the phonemes found in American English. A few. A definite few.
Since it all cost the equivalent of US$0.50, I really didn’t care.
Apparently vodka helps flowers last longer when they're dying. But you can put vodka in anything and it'll make it better.
Being a trained observer, I rather enjoy just sitting in any old bar, smoking my cigar, drinking my Yorshch, and watching people. I try and not be intrusive and I never eavesdrop, but I like to try and think of what strange set of circumstances brought us all here together in this place at this time. It gives me writing ideas, some of which I jot down in a notebook I always carry. It also gives me a good shot of nostalgia when I look back at something I wrote some 40 or so years ago.
Yeah, old habits do die hard.
I take a drag off my cigar and set it in the ashtray in front of me on the bar as I go to correct another egregious misspelling in my notebook. I have to immediately proofread what I wrote, or I’d never recall later what the fuck I was trying to convey; especially if it’s in a noisy, smoky, or murky milieu.
Quicker than a bunny fucks, Unidentifiable Oriental #1 (UO #1) deftly reaches over, snags my cigar, and helps himself to a few mouthy puffs.
I look at him, the empty ashtray directly in front of me, him again, and then UO #2.
Since I speak no real Oriental, much less Korean, language, and my Mandarin at this point is worse than laughable; I just point to the cigar, turn out my hands and shrug my shoulders in the international “What the actual fuck, dude?” gesture.
He just smiles a gappy, toothy, and snaggle-toothed at that, grin at me and makes a point of ensuring that I see him enjoying a few more drags on my own damned cigar.
Not able to contain myself any further, I venture a “What the fuck, chuckles? That’s not your fucking cigar.”
Like gasoline being tossed on a fire-ring full of embers, they both go unconditionally incoherently insane.
Yammering, chattering, jumping up and down, and getting right into my face. They wanted me to unquestionably understand that my few words of English insulted them far more than their filching of my $20 cigar.
OK, I’m pretty well trained in Hapkido; an oddly, given the present situation, hybrid Korean martial art. I’m at least 6 or 7 inches taller and who knows how many stone/kilos/pounds/Solar masses heavier than these two clowns. I could easily go all Gojira on their hapless asses and mop significant expanses of the floorboards with them.
Instead, I look around for the bartender. I figured since I was keeping him well supplied with Korean won via tips, and he spoke some English as well as perhaps whatever the fuck these characters were chattering; maybe he could get to the bottom of what was happening.
The bartender walks over and I ask him to ask the two unidentifiable twins why they stole my cigar.
He nods in agreement and goes on in whatever the fuck dialect was being used today by the pair.
“They say they wanted it. So they took it.” They ask, “What are you going to do about it?” the bartender relates.
I deftly reach inside my field vest, as everyone concerned ducks and covers.
I extract two fresh cigars; not a .454 Casull Magnum.
I give one cigar to the bartender and one to OU#2.
“With my compliments.” I pleasantly say.
I was well apprised of the fact that in certain places like this, the local authorities often approach foreigners with, for the lack of a better term, ‘Agents Provocateur’.
Like the Westboro Baptist “Church”, they try to get a rise out of you so you’ll lose your cool and either create a scene or take a poke at the miscreant. Then they have all the pretext they require to drag you to the local hoosegow, shake you down for every penny on your person, as well as any phones, notebooks, wallets, passports, cigars, cigarettes, etc.
Basically, they goad you into a fight, then drop the thousand-pound shit-hammer when you retaliate.
It’s all so parochial. So obviously clear as vodka; this elementary charade only raised a single eyebrow.
I’m not going to even raise my voice over a couple of cheap cigars that neither of them noticed I slipped them instead of the premium ones I was smoking.
Thus defeated, I asked the bartender to ask them if they liked the cigar.
“What do you think?” I asked in cordial English, “Too tightly rolled? Not caged enough? Too green?”
UO #2 slipped and said “It smells very good…” where he realizes he’s blown his cover.
“Yeah, I like it too.”, I replied, “So much so, I buy my own. What are your badge numbers, boys? I will be reporting this incident to Inspector P'aeng Yeong-Hwan, the head of security for the IUPGS conference to which I was invited as special scientific consultant.”
Of course, they immediately dummy up and feign illiteracy.
I say loudly and very clearly, “You bastards aren’t gonna get away with this. I mean, what is going on in this country when scumsuckers like you can get away with trying to sandbag a Doctor of Geological Sciences?”
I ask the bartender to translate, but alas, it was too late. They vamoosed when I turned to talk with the bartender.
They left so fast, they didn’t notice me snapping their pictures with my ancient but trusty Nokia 3310, revised edition, during our little chat. Even with a mere 2-megapixel picture, I have enough to show the North Korean leaders of the project to get an identification and make known my displeasure of being treated like some commoner or buffoon.
They left both my cigar and the one I gave them. The bartender tucked the cigar I gave him into his pocket and stared lustily at the two remaining on the bar.
“Take’em”, I said. I sure as fuck don’t want them. “Just a clean ashtray and a refill, if you would be so kind,” I say, as pleasantly as possible, considering the situation.
Both the unsmoked and my smoldering, as well as well-traveled, cigar disappear as quickly as minks rut. A clean, new ashtray, double beer and ‘vodka’ suddenly appear.
“No charge, Dr. Rock”, the bartender grins, as he shoves my erstwhile high-mileage cigar between his teeth.
“OK, fair enough.”, I say, “Spaseebah.”, and deposit a raft of won on the bar. The pile won’t be touched until after I leave in a few hours’ time.
“Stranger in a strange land.” I muse over a couple of further beers.
The call from the massage parlor never came, or it did and I couldn’t hear it over the clamor of the casino. I went up to the hotel’s Korean restaurant; had some salty soup, a sad, sad salad, and some form of funky fish, I think, for dinner. I retired that night in a slightly foul mood.
I called Es then the next morning and caught her before she retired. With a 14 hour difference between us, I was getting up at 0700 and she was getting ready to hit the hay at 2100.
I told her of the events of the day previous, and she was glad she wasn’t tagging along. She would have never accused the Korean geologists of being behind the times and would have probably bent the guy’s nose that swiped my cigar.
Agreed, that she’d probably be unimpressed with this place. I promised her that we’d go on a holiday when I returned from all this. It would be up to her to find out ‘where,’ and I’d supply the ‘when’ when I could.
Everything else was going along smoothly, more or less, on the home front, and I didn’t want to give the local listening-in federales too much to say grace over, so we said our parting admirations and rang off.
Shower, shower sunriser of real vodka and citrus, a quick brush and comb, and spiff of cargo shorts and new ghastly Hawaiian shirt; 30 minutes later, back down in the restaurant for the inevitable breakfast buffet.
After what some would consider breakfast and others would consider a vague attempt at nourishment, we reconvened in the conference room precisely at 1012.
Nothing like precision with this group.
We spend the next two days going over, in various groups, what we think would be required to set forth proper the quest for oil and gas in North Korea on track. Everyone got in on the act, and we advocated for that. We needed everyone’s input to make this happen. Or to even map a way forward to present to country officials. Those from the West on what was needed and those from the East to tell us what was available, and the combined wetware to make what needed to be done happen with what existed.
It took no small amount of doing, but we secured a set of maps that covered the entire country. We were watched very closely by the shiny suit squad that we did not copy, photograph or otherwise take any extraneous information from these sheets of infamy. All other maps in the country were intentionally skewed, with errors deliberately added in to confuse “interlopers, spies, or other personas non grata”.
I made a massive stink and told them that if we didn’t receive the unfuckered maps, aerial photographs and satellite imagery pronto, we’re packing up and leaving that afternoon.
“We don’t have time for monks resisting the carnival. We didn’t come here to try and guess if the maps are correct or if our remedies will actually work on maps that say one thing and reality says something else entirely.”
They hemmed and hawed, but as I made the announcement to all before lunch that if the real maps didn’t appear by the time we returned from tiffin, we’re gone.
And we take tiffin purty durn early round these parts, buckaroo.
No one was surprised as I when we returned and there were folio after folio of government-uncensored maps, photos, and imagery for our program. I guess they finally reasoned it would be a relatively good idea to begin to take us seriously.
We spent one whole day just going over our field geological apparatus. They had a good idea of how to use a direction-finder compass and Jacob’s staff to measure sections. However, they were totally flummoxed by our Brunton Compasses, GPS systems, curiously referred to as ‘position finders’, notebook mapping applications, and electronic data storage and retrieval systems.
Gad. It was like being back in the 1970s before PCs were a glimmer in IBM's corporate orbs.
We spent the next week working to bring our less fortunate colleagues up to, well, not date, but at least up to the brink of the 21st century. We explained that plate tectonics, continental drift, and the precession of the continents was accepted geoscientific principles, not some arcane Capitalist or Socialist plot to undermine the quality of science in the east.
Yep. It was that mindset we had to first conquer. I think we’ve made great headway in that direction today.
The next Chautauqua session had us split up into two separate groups. We decided in a fit of Cesarean inquiry to ‘divide and conquer’. There are two distinct milieus which are able to contain economic deposits of hydrocarbons: onshore and offshore.
Instead of attacking both head-on, we’d focus initially on the offshore domain. Once we had a good handle on what was going on under the East Korean Sea, the Huangai (Yellow) Sea and surreptitiously, the South Sea; we’d collaborate our findings and work to tie them in and extend them onshore.
The singular Phyongnam Basin is the one large depositional, sedimentological, and structural basin in North Korea. It is filled by the Joeson and Pyeongan Supergroups of sediments, which are Cambro-Ordovician and Permocarboniferous, respectively. These are good hunting grounds for oil and gas. Could be elephant–hunting country.
But before we could undertake that, we had to get ‘back to basics’. That is, we had to understand and delineate the ‘frame’ of the Korean Peninsula. In other words, we needed to figure out how and when the peninsula came into existence.
South Korea’s geology is much more complex, fortunately than that found in the North. There were nasty side comments that were due to the relative development not of the geology, but of the geologists who studied each country’s geology.
It was, perhaps, a mean way of characterizing the situation. But, unfortunately, it was also probably fairly accurate.
The Korean Peninsula is characterized by huge massifs, which are sections of a crust that are demarcated by faults or flexures. In the movement of the crust, a massif tends to retain its internal structure while being displaced as a whole. The term also refers to a group of mountains formed by such a structure. It’s basically one huge, semi-resilient rock.
The basement rocks of the Korean Peninsula consist of high-grade gneiss and schist, Paleoproterozoic Precambrian massifs, which formed in the early stage of Earth’s history. These rocks are unconformably overlain by metasedimentary rocks; schist, quartzite, marble, calcsilicate, and amphibolite, of the Middle to Late Proterozoic. The Korean Peninsula is floored by a collation of about five of these huge Precambrian massifs that acted like ‘microplates’ during the aggregation of the peninsula. These massifs consist of thick dolostone, metavolcanics, and schist, which were intruded by Paleoproterozoic granites.
These Paleoproterozoic metasedimentary and granitic rocks underwent repeated intracrustal differentiation, followed by the events of cratonization, i.e., regional metamorphism and igneous activity, at 1.9-1.8 Ga. Sediments deposited in the peripheral basins during the Mesoproterozoic and Neoproterozoic lead to stabilization as the basement of the peninsula.
These early depositional basins formed the locus of deposition that continued on from the Proterozoic through the Phanerozoic. There are at least three, perhaps four, depositional basins in the south which are delimited by structural zones, such as the South Korean Tectonic Line (SKTL), a huge zone of continental transform faults and forms the basis of boundary demarcation between the Okcheon and Taebaeksan basins.
The boundary between the Seochangri Formation of the Okcheon Basin and the Joseon Supergroup of the Taebaeksan Basin in the Bonghwajae area is a thrust (or reverse‐slip shear zone). This thrust is presumably a relay structure (i.e. a restraining bend) between two segments of a continental transform fault (the South Korean Tectonic Line or SKTL), along which the Okcheon Basin of the South China Craton was juxtaposed against the Taebaeksan Basin of the North China Craton during the Permian–Triassic suturing of the two cratons.
In the late Proterozoic, sedimentation was initiated in basins of the Korean Peninsula, accompanied by deposition of siliciclastic and volcaniclastic sediments as well as carbonates. The massifs were submerged in the Early Paleozoic during a greenhouse period, forming a shallow marine platform and associated environments.
The Cambrian-Ordovician succession unconformably overlies Precambrian granite gneiss. It consists of mixed carbonate-siliciclastic rocks of sandstone, shale, and shallow-marine carbonates. Sedimentation was initiated in the Early Cambrian with a global rise in sea level on the stable craton of the Sino-Korean Block.
There was a major break in sedimentation during the Silurian and Devonian periods in the entire platform. During the Carboniferous to early Triassic, sedimentation was resumed in coastal plain and swamp environments with progradation of deltas.
Major tectonic events were initiated in the Triassic when the South China Block collided with the Sino-Korean Block. The eastern part of the Sino-Korean Block rotated clockwise and moved southward relative to the South China Block along the SKTL.
In the Middle-Late Jurassic, orthogonal subduction of the paleo-Pacific plate under the Asian continent caused compression and thrust deformation. A number of piggyback basins formed along the thrust faults in the east of the SKTL. At the same time, the entire peninsula was prevailed by granite batholiths, especially along the northeast-southwest-trending tectonic belt.
In the Cretaceous Period, the paleo-Pacific Plate subducted northward under the Asian continent, forming numerous extensional (left-lateral strike-slip) basins in the southern part of the peninsula and the Yellow Sea. A large back-arc basin was initiated in the southeastern part.
In the Paleogene, both the volcanic arc and the back-arc basin ceased to develop, as volcanic activities shifted eastward, accompanied by a rollback of the subduction of the Pacific plate. In the Miocene, pull-apart (right-lateral) basins formed in the eastern continental margin.
The Korea Plateau experienced continental rifting accompanied by extensive volcanism during the extensional opening of the southern offshore basin. It subsided more than 1000 m below sea level.
So, as South Korea was mix- mastered by a half-a-billion years’ worth of structural tectonism, which created several depositional basins quite capable of generating and storing economic quantities of oil and gas, the scene to the north was much more quiescent.
The North was composed, from south to north, of the relict Imjingang Belt, which was an old back-arc basin between the Gyeonggi Massif to the south and the Nagrim Massif to the north. It is a paleo-subduction zone, full of volcanics, volcaniclastics and other non-hydrocarbon bearing rocks. It was mashed and metamorphosed, and basically forms a convenient boundary between the complex geology of the South and the more relaxed geology of the North.
Heading north, we come across the Pyeongnam Basin, the only North Korean basin thus far defined that could contain hydrocarbons. Further north is the huge Nangrim Massif. It’s a huge block of igneous and metamorphic rocks that weather very nicely and form some spectacular scenery, but from an oil and gas economic outlook are worthless.
Offshore North Korea, there are two possible petroliferous basins. The offshore West Korea Bay Basin and East Sea Basin, along with five onshore basins could be offering exploration potential. At least ten exploration wells have been drilled in the West Sea, with some showing “good oil shows” along with the identification of a number of potential reservoirs.
The West Sea potentially has oil and has reportedly flowed oil at reasonable rates from at least two exploration wells when they were drilled and tested in the 1980s. Meanwhile, the East Sea has seen Russian exploration efforts previously including the drilling of two wells, both of which reportedly encountered encouraging shows of oil and gas.
Onshore, there has been little exploration to date, apart from efforts by the Korean Oil Exploration Corporation and also recently by Mongolia’s HBOil JSC (HBO). Among five main onshore sedimentary sub-basins, the largest is south of the capital; while unconfirmed reports point to a 1-trillion-cubic-foot (tcf) discovery in 2002.
Historically DPRK was thought to consist of five under-explored geological basins, the
• Pyongyang,
• Zaeryong,
• Anju-Onchon,
• Gilju-Myongchon and
• Sinuiju, Basins.
These basins are all located more or less along the coast, rather than inland. This also points to a certain degree of geological aptitude; as it’s much easier to explore along the more populated coast than it is to venture inland. There may be more hiding in the interior of the country, it’s just that no one’s looked as of yet. That’s difficult. Exploring along the coast is much easier.
With 3 basins supposedly proven to have working petroleum systems; 22 wells have been drilled and the majority are said to have encountered hydrocarbons with some wells testing production at 75 barrels of oil per day of light sweet crude oil. This has yet to be documented or confirmed by the Korea Oil Exploration Corp (KOEC), North Korea’s state-run oil company.
Yeah, our work was definitely cut out for us.
It was decided that a series of excursions offshore in one of the few remaining seaworthy, which was a real judgment call, KOEC seismic boats would be appropriate. The one we received use of was an old, decommissioned Chamsuri-class patrol boat, one Chamsuri-215(참수리-215), PKMR-215 in particular.
It had been basically stripped to the gunwales and completely retrofitted as a seismic acquisition and recording vessel. It had been renamed: “조선 민주주의 인민 공화국 영광” or “Glory of Democratic People's Republic of Korea Science”.
In reality, it was an aging rust-bucket piece of shit that might have possibly seen better days but wasn’t letting on. All the military nonsense, except the powder magazine, had been removed and a new superstructure consisting of slap-dash hunks of poorly-welded low-carbon, cold-rolled steel were erected to form a pilothouse in the area where the bridge once existed. They also built, extra haphazardly, a shooter’s room, galley, cold and wet storage areas, recording room, and storage of tapes and the extra bits and pieces needed for a none-too-extended stay on the sea. It was, being charitable, almost utilitarian.
They could not make their own water, so trip times were limited to about three days in length. Besides, they didn’t really have a hot galley, so it was cold, canned Chinese chow for the next 72 hours. They had a couple of fairly sturdy yardarms with heavy winches to handle the towed seismic arrays of geophones, which were of ancient heritage and showed it. These were probably appropriated back in the 80s or perhaps earlier when they first thought about opening their waters for seismic exploration.
They ‘borrowed’ most of the sensing and recording equipment back then from oilfield service companies and simply forgot to return it once finished. Since they burned that bridge so glowingly, they couldn’t get parts nor service when things failed. Being delicate seismic sensing and recording equipment, fail they did.
So, we had to use what was leftover, or what DPRK industries could cobble together, or what could be salvaged from salt-water drenched recording equipment that hadn’t been too heavily cared for over the span of the last 50 years.
We weren’t terribly optimistic.
So, we load the good ship ‘Rorrypop’, as Viv christened the thing, and head out to the wilds of the Yellow Sea. It was an abbreviated foreign crew, as there was really nothing other than upchuck and curse me soundly for insisting the non-geophysical scientists came along.
Aboard were the two geophysicists, naturally; Volna and Activ. I was there stick-handling the logistics and hoping to help out with the geophysical signal source explosives.
Morse and Cliff, the two other geologists accompanied us on the trip, and Dax decided to go with me as he figured I’d have access to the best booze no matter where we went.
The remainder of the team, the geochemists, Erlan and Ivan, the geomechanic, Iskren, the PT, Joon, and the two REs, Viv and Grako, remained behind onshore at the hotel. They set forth cataloging what data was available; from what sources, it’s vintage, veracity, and usefulness.
Augean tasks, both. Not as fecaliferous as Hercules’ jobs, but still, they held their own rations of shit for each sub-team.
Heading seaward, the Yellow Sea extends by about 960 km (600 mi) from north to south and about 700 km (430 mi) from east to west; it has an area of approximately 380,000 km2 (150,000 mi2) and a volume of about 17,000 km3 (4,100 mi3).[4] Its depth is only 44 m (144 ft) on average, with a maximum of 152 m (499 ft). The sea is a flooded section of the continental shelf that formed during the Late Pleistocene (some 10,000 years ago) as sea levels rose 120 m (390 ft) to their current levels. The depth gradually increases from north to south. The sea bottom and shores are dominated by sand and silt brought by the rivers through the Bohai Sea and the Yalu River. These deposits, together with sand storms are responsible for the yellowish color of the water referenced in the sea's name.
Being shallow, the Yellow Sea is more perturbed by the frequent seasonal storms of the region. The area has cold, dry winters with strong northerly monsoons blowing from late November to April. I was told that the summers are wet and warm with frequent typhoons between June and October; but now all we had to contend with were swelling seas, spraying saltwater, waggling waves, and a shivering, shimmying ship.
All the navigation, communications and other shiply duties were being handled by both members of the DPRK Coast Guard Auxiliary, mostly older guys who were of great and high humorous jest; and an actual pleasure to be around. They were like their scientific cadre on this cruise, basically a political ‘give a shit’ attitude, and a desire to get the job done, smoke the American’s cigars and drink as much as we could get away with.
The scientific portion of the cruise was being undertaken by students of the various universities and members of the North Korean national oil company. The demeanors of these characters ranged from extremely earnest and stringently North Korean politically correct in the students and academicians, to a more relaxed ‘yeah, let’s just get the fucking job done so we can have a lot of drinks’ sort of view of the older members of the DPRK scientific team.
It was a fun admixture of cultures, ages, professions, and behaviors.
Oh, forgive me for forgetting to mention our ‘guides’, or handlers. They were also chosen, nay, ordered to come along. Landlubbers all, they were less than thrilled with the assignment and inevitable seasickness; which seemed endemic to those of Oriental extraction on the cruise. However, our guides did enjoy drinking. As we learned that alcohol is a central part of Korean culture, and they encouraged us to socialize with them when the time was appropriate.
Or, not appropriate, as I was being denounced by one of the geophysical students after only a few hours into our very first day. Hell, we weren’t even in the Yellow Sea proper. We started here at Pyongyang, down the Taedong River, over the Giva Dam, through Pushover, across Shmoeland, to the stronghold of Shmoe; into the very belly of the frothing Yellow Sea.
Most everyone, other than the foreign elements on board, were either making the trip in the bowels of the ship; nursing and cursing seasickness; or by rail, doing exactly the same thing.
“Chum it over the side, ya’ blinkered mucker!”, I admonished one bottle-greenish national. “This ain’t the Captain‘s mess, Chuckles. You have to clean up your own spew!”
I was reveling in getting back out on the water and regaining my sea legs. I never get seasick.
Be it a seismic vessel in the heaving Arctic Ocean, a pirogue in the swamps of Louisiana, my cousin’s fishin’ johnboat back in northern Baja Canada, a US nuclear submarine under the permanent pack ice of the North Pole, or VLCC in the Straits of Somaliland; I just don’t get seasick.
Airsick? Nah. Carsick? Nope. Ready to puke in a Hind-20 over the Caspian Sea during a strong local thunderstorm? Close, but no cigar.
So, I’m doing a Titanic scene recreation. Up in the very bow of the craft, standing in stark defiance of the gusting winds and blowing salt spray, smoking a huge cigar, and totting out of one of my emergency flasks while trying to hang on to my Stetson. I am also endeavoring to remain upright, field vest and really, really ghastly Hawaiian shirt billowing in the breeze.
I’m not certain if it was the cigar smoke, the wind-whipped beard, and hair, the give a fuck attitude, or the flapping of the Hawaiian shirt to which the little local geophysicist objected. But he was pissed. Olive-green with seasickness, rubber-kneed but still standing a good social-distance away, reading me the riot act in high-pitched Korean.
As I usually do in such delicate situations, I just smile and wave. Show them I’m mostly harmless and they either cool down or get pissed off even more and stomp off in disgust.
Either one was a winning situation for me in my book.
So, I return to doing my ship’s figurehead imitation and revel in the wind, spray, and feeling of really being booming. Sure, some might complain of the cold, but not me, the sting of the salt-spray or the windburn; but I eschew what most people enjoy as ‘normal weather’. I live for pushing the boundaries. I love rough weather and situations that thrust the edge of the envelope further past normalcy.
Besides, we were still in sight of land. Hell, if everything went south at this very minute, one could practically walk back to shore. I can hardly wait to see what these wigglers will do if a night storm comes up when were 100 or more kilometers from land.
The boat’s thrumming heavily from both the thrust of the Soviet-era diesel engines and the craft’s bludgeoning its way through the waves. Most hull designs are so the ship will ‘cut’ through the surface waters. This craft’s flattened trihedral hull design didn’t so much ‘cut’, as ‘slam’ it’s way through. The boat would then crash up one side and smash down the other of each large wave we encountered. The boat would shudder whole, adding a new note of resonance along with the monotonous one-note song of the aged Russian diesels.
The spray would fly, the boat would convulse, time would seem to freeze until we bashed into the next wave. The captain of the vessel took his orders very seriously. “Get to coordinates XXX and YYY by the most expedient means possible.” If that meant charging, full-throttle into the teeth of the oncoming monsoon-force wind while we were traversing the worst kelp jungle I’ve seen this side of the Sargasso Sea; well, piss on it, full steam ahead.
“Fuck it”, I thought, “Not my pony, not my show. Let’s see how this plays out.” While I light a new cigar and search for Emergency Flask #2.
After I’d been upbraided by the geophysical student for transgressions still unknown, Cliff and Dax wander out to ask me what the hell I was up to.
“Have you gone completely barmy?”, Cliff asked. “It’s a full gale out here and you’re standing in the teeth of it like it was a warm, sunny Sunday in Piccadilly.”
“Nope, not at all”, I replied, “Just reveling in the delights of an angry atmosphere.”
“He’s nuts, I told you”, Dax smirked, “He’d go anywhere and do anything to have a cigar.”
“Not just a cigar, me old mucker”, I smiled and waved my second emergency flack under his nose.
“Figures”, they both respond in unison.
Dax departs and returns mere seconds later with paper Dixie-style cups he liberated from the ship’s one head. We are going to do our very best to extend the lifetime of the onboard water supply for our scientific and military friends. I pour them each a cup full.
“Whoa, Doc”, that’s gotta be 100 milliliters!” Cliff objects.
“As the Siberian saying goes: One hundred versts, roughly a hundred miles, is no distance. A hundred rubles isn't worthwhile money. And a hundred grams of vodka just makes you thirsty. Prosit!” I say in reply.
We retire to the overhang on the fantail of the boat. It’s a sunshade and keeps the worst of the weather out for the lightweights on the cruise. I decided we’d withdraw there to keep these Dominionites out of the worst of the wind and sea spray.
“Rock”, Cliff notes, “You are a complete throwback. You do not belong here in the 21st century. You need to find a way back to the Calabrian and ride herd on the continental Neanderthals. Give them the gift of distilling and tobacco agriculture, and you’d reframe the world.”
Dax agrees, but notes if I do find a way back, he and Cliff would be selected against.
“Good point”, Cliff agrees. “Rock, stay here. We need your expertise now more than ever. Plus your ready supply of strong drink and cigars.”
“Glad to know that I’m truly appreciated around these parts.” I chuckled slightly acridly.
“Ah, Rock. Buck up. You know we’re only takin’ a piss.” Cliff says.
“Aim it starboard. Don’t want it blowin’ all over the seismic gear”, I reply, laughingly.
The trip continued, and I found a not-bolted-to-the-deck chair and moved it outside under the shade back by the boat’s fantail. I refreshed my emergency flasks and replenished my cigar supply. I’m not about to sit inside and listen to the wails and gnashing of teeth of the landlubber crowd, the patter and timor of the geophysical throng as they titter and argue about array design, nor the military hut-hutting all over the fucking boat.
A couple of times, one or more of our ‘handlers’ would venture out as I had the only supply of readily available smokeables and drinkables. Oh, we had food, lots of beer, soju, some knock-off vodka, and some of that faux homebrew bourbon for later once the workday was declared over; but for now, I was the one and only dispensary.
We’d have some random chats while they screwed up their courage to ask me for a smoke or a tot of drink. I brought several bundles of really cheap-ass cigars for just such occasions; besides, I figured one of my Camacho triple-maduros would have them chumming for the remainder of the trip. I had also many, many cartons of Sobranie pastel-colored cigarettes, and many more cartons of knock-off Marlboros I bought at the duty-free when we hit town.
It was chucklingly funny to see these harsh, military, no-nonsense characters walking their duty beats smoking pastel green, lavender, and mauve cigarettes.
We got bogged down a couple of times when one or more of the ship’s twin screws fouled with kelp as we tried to put some distance between us and the shore. Each time, one really dejected low-ranking young Coast Guard character would go over the side with a rope around his waist and a knife in his hand to free the props. I was going to object as this was moronically dangerous; but, again, not my pony, not my show. This called for full proper tethering and SCUBA gear.
They had neither aboard.
Welcome to the wonders of a centrally planned economy.
To be continued.
submitted by Rocknocker to Rocknocker [link] [comments]

What Returning to Work Will Look Like in Offices, Cafes and Factories Around the World

Expect lots of temperature checks and one-way routes. ‘As we experienced in China, this will be a journey.’
Wearable social-distancing buzzers. Masked blackjack dealers. Drive-thru electronics purchases. From cubicles to factory floors, cafes to clothing boutiques, businesses around the world are dreaming up creative ways to reopen, attempting to start revenue flowing again while minimizing the risk to customers and employees.
The global economy is riding on their ability to pull off that delicate balance. A new flareup of Covid-19 cases could shutter offices, stores, restaurants and manufacturing plants once again, further choking off the flow of goods and services and threatening more jobs. Some governments, such as China, are providing rigorous oversight of the process. Others, including President Donald Trump’s administration, have offered looser guidance and are entrusting businesses to monitor their facilities. Scientists are still studying how the virus is spread, and whether keeping people six feet apart is enough, adding to the risks.
The companies’ plans rely on a steady supply of masks, gloves, thermometers and tests that is likely to strain budgets and manufacturers’ ability to keep up. Social distancing will be built in, with people divided by barriers and kept apart from colleagues and customers, a U-turn after years of movement toward open floor plans. Some companies will monitor employees more closely than ever before, while others will let workers choose how much protection they need. The way we work, shop, travel and eat in 2020 – and probably beyond – is being plotted out in boardrooms around the world.
Here are the changes companies are contemplating for their workplaces in the coming weeks.

The Office

Seats on the shuttle bus to Unilever’s Shanghai offices can be reserved using a chat group. Employees must be masked to board, and they sit on alternating sides, one person to each four-seat row. Upon arrival, each worker scans a QR code and fills out a health status report to get a daily pass to enter. Then comes the temperature check and the hand sanitizer.
Inside the office, movement is tightly regulated. Employees keep their masks on and are encouraged to use the stairs instead of the elevator, with spritzes of hand sanitizer before and after touching the regularly disinfected handrail. In the canteen, a single person is allowed at each four-seat table.
Such measures might seem predictable in a centrally controlled society like China, but some version of them is starting to appear in the West. At Britain’s former state phone monopoly, BT Group Plc, call center workers sit two meters apart, and walkways are designated as one-way to keep people from brushing past each other. Temperature checks are becoming routine at Sistema, the Russian conglomerate, which also says it’s developed its own two-hour test for Covid-19. Employees who come to the office have been tested in the past couple of weeks, though as many as half of the call center workers at MTS, the mobile network controlled by Sistema, are operating out of their homes.

More Room

Flexible space operator Knotel, which runs offices for corporations including Uber and Netflix, says workplace design has to change. Offices will likely be less densely populated, and altered to make them “antiviral,” according to Amol Sarva, Knotel’s chief executive officer.
“Things like ventilation, UV light, density screening, video monitoring, and temperature monitoring, cleaning protocols — those are all going to have to change,” he said. “Certainly there’ll be more space.”
In China, Cushman & Wakefield has helped move nearly a million workers back into 800 million square feet (74 million square meters) of office space. The company is creating a Recovery Readiness manual for landlords and tenants, based in part on its experience in China, that includes colored carpets to create visual boundaries around desks, plexiglass shields between desks that face each other and signs that direct walking traffic in a single direction.

Fewer Meetings

Even when people do come back to the office, meetings will be limited, and large gatherings are out of the question. This week, Facebook Inc. CEO Mark Zuckerberg canceled all physical events of 50 or more people through June 2021. The vast majority of employees are required to work from home through May, and those who need to carry on doing so will be able to work at home through the summer.
The road to normalcy may be much longer than that. At Abcam Plc, a British protein research company, 40 out of 300 China-based employees started returning to work in Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou and Hong Kong on Feb. 14. Two months later, the company is running split shifts to maintain distancing for the roughly 50% of employees based in manufacturing, logistics and essential lab work.

The Factory

On Feb. 10, Winly Automotive (Wuhan) Ltd. was assigned a checklist from the government. To reopen, the company would be required to have a one-month stash of masks and sanitizer, take a photo of the supplies, and send it to officials before submitting to a detailed inspection. “The policy has been constantly changing,” said Wang Xuepan, one of the plant’s managers. “It’s very difficult for us to handle.”
In the Seattle area, Boeing Co. has worked with the Washington state labor department on a plan to reopen its factories. It will be doling out cloth masks to most workers, saving the gold-standard N95 masks for a select few in more hazardous conditions.
Unlike office drones, factory workers have to show up in person to get the job done. Figuring out what basic protections they’ll need is part of the challenge. At Boeing, industrial engineers are analyzing the sequence of work on its assembly lines to find ways to spread apart workers.

Taking the Temperature

Airbus SE has divided employees at its plants into red and blue teams, who don’t see each other because they use different routes to enter and exit buildings. Volkswagen AG is allotting more time between shifts and reducing expectations for production because it takes longer for people to move around each other at a safe distance. Ford Motor Co. is experimenting with wearable devices that would buzz workers if they get too close together.
While the virus can be transmitted by people with no symptoms, many manufacturers are doing temperature checks, whether with thermometers, thermal imaging cameras or — in the case of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV in the U.S. — reusable forehead strips.
Fiat Chrysler, whose CEO Mike Manley is one of the executives talking with Trump about reopening the economy, is requiring workers to fill out a health questionnaire two hours before reporting to work each day. They must bring either a hard copy, or scan a QR code with their phone, to prove they aren’t displaying signs of illness or exposure to the virus, according to documents obtained by Bloomberg. Workers can’t enter the plant without it.
Some companies are closing cafeterias in favor of vending machines. Dongfeng PSA in Wuhan is handing out prepared lunchboxes to employees, who must eat at least 1.5 meters apart with their backs to each other.
Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. said Chairman Li Shufu wrote a song to keep workers motivated through such dreariness. “A world full of expectations/Turned to dust of yesterday,” the lyrics go. “Their sorrow flowing into the sea/But the flower of love is quietly blooming.”

The Airplane

When air travel resumes in earnest, it’s likely that hand sanitizers, face masks and thermometers will become standard at most major airports, said David Powell, medical adviser for the International Air Transport Association, a trade group. All three have shortcomings, but can also reassure passengers, he said.
The International Civil Aviation Organization, which sets global flying standards, wants to establish a “public health corridor concept.” Under such a plan, major airlines, airports, public authorities and other parties would adopt common protocols for screening, boarding, in-flight procedures, arrivals, customs and baggage.
“We cannot all just stop flying,” Ansa Jordaan, the group’s chief of aviation medicine, said during an April 15 webcast.
Emirates Airline said this week it was the first to conduct rapid Covid-19 blood tests, with results available in 10 minutes for passengers flying Wednesday from Dubai to Tunisia. It plans to extend the procedure to other flights, according to Chief Operating Officer Adel Al Redha.
Other carriers are attempting less invasive measures. Etihad Airways, another major airline in the United Arab Emirates, plans to deploy touchless self-service devices at its hub airport in Abu Dhabi to identify travelers with medical conditions, including the early stages of coronavirus.
In the U.S., American Airlines Group Inc. plans to continue spacing customers apart during boarding and flights, conducting extensive cleanings of aircraft and reducing food and beverage service to limit contact, CEO Doug Parker said in an April 15 video message.
“When you do fly, aircraft cleanliness and social distancing matter greatly,” he said.

The Store

In China, it’s become standard to have your temperature taken any time you want to go shopping. Visitors to the Wuhan International Plaza luxury mall are checked for a fever at the door, before they queue up to be served one at a time at Louis Vuitton.
Levi Strauss & Co. disinfects its Chinese stores three times a day and requires temperature checks for customers, who are expected to wear masks before entering the store. Fitting rooms and products that have been tried on are disinfected each time they’re used.
It’s unclear whether practices implemented in China will make their way to other parts of the world, though several companies said they’ll learn from their experience in Asia.

Drive-Thru Shopping

Another technique is to keep shoppers out of the store altogether. Dixons Carphone Plc, the electronics retailer, is considering plans for contact-free “drive-thru” style stores to limit the risk of coronavirus for staff and customers. Shoppers would park outside, call the store to select items to buy, use a contactless system to pay and then open their trunks so staff could deliver the products.
Salespeople at luxury retailers in China were already using social media to engage with customers before the outbreak, but they’ve stepped up the effort since, adding clients on WeChat and sending them information about the latest trends. Louis Vuitton tried showcasing its summer product line in a livestream show on March 26 featuring a social-media star, but was ridiculed for the quality of the video. Sometimes there’s no substitute for personal contact.

The Restaurant

Buffets and salad bars will be re-thought, and self-serve drink stations may be “a thing of the past,” said Taco John’s CEO Jim Creel, who added that other changes are afoot at the 387-store chain. Taco John’s popular salsa bar — around for the past 15 years — may be removed.
“We hope we don’t have to take them out — that we’ll be able to figure out a way to make them still work — but I’m afraid the fear factor our there will force us to go to a pre-packaged option.”
A test of self-ordering kiosks may also get pulled back. “It was a good idea three months ago, but not so good today,” Creel said.

Phone Pay

In China, restaurants and even bars have opened back up in Shanghai, with varying limits on seating arrangements – some allow six to a table, others only one. In Beijing, restaurants are doing temperature checks. In Wuhan, most places are still delivery-only.
“In the short run, as dining rooms open back up again, you’ll probably see many restaurants space their tables a little bit further apart,” said Jack Li, CEO of menu researcher Datassential. “You’ll see more restaurants try to adopt phone pay. So not having to hand your money or card to anyone. You’re certainly going to see more places continue to do things like contactless delivery.”
Starbucks Corp. is taking a store-by-store approach to resuming business activities in the U.S., with services limited to drive-thru, delivery and takeout via mobile orders and contactless pickup.
“As we experienced in China, this will be a journey,” CEO Kevin Johnson wrote in a memo to staff on Thursday.

The Menu

Chains are cutting back menus, focusing on products that sell best and are easy to make. Romano’s Macaroni Grill has pared down its menu to 70% of what it used to be, saying goodbye to pizzas and calzones recently. McDonald’s all-day breakfast menu is gone.
Fazoli’s Italian restaurant chain is trying to secure Purell sanitizing stations – four for each store — along with “millions” of alcohol-based wipes for re-opening the dining rooms of its 216 locations. The company is also re-thinking bathrooms and looking into touch-less soap dispensers. It’s an investment, but a worthwhile one, says CEO Carl Howard.
“I want to let the consumer know I’m doing everything I can to keep them as safe as possible,” Howard said in an interview.

The Arena

Large public gatherings aren’t top of mind yet in China, but Trump and the people who run the U.S.’s biggest sports leagues appear aligned in their thinking that live games, at least in some form, are a critical part of helping the country recover.
“The progression needs to be open outdoor sports first, golf, tennis, swimming so that we can start to test the waters — that I’m fine with,” said billionaire Mark Cuban, who owns the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks.
One obstacle may be local politicians. When UFC floated plans to host an event this weekend on tribal land in California without spectators, it was pressure from politicians, including Governor Gavin Newsom, that led to its cancellation. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has reportedly discussed the possibility of prohibiting large gatherings like concerts and sporting events in the city for another year.

The Movies

That said, there’s billions on the line for sports leagues, sponsors and media networks if the games don’t resume soon. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious-disease expert, has said that that the only way to do that this summer is to close venues to fans and keep all the players, coaches and referees isolated from society.
Cinema owners are also waiting to see when health officials give them clearance to open up. Cinemark Holdings Inc., the third-largest U.S. movie chain, has been in discussions with major film studios about when to release blockbusters again. The chain’s management thinks they could begin bringing back staff starting in late June, then build up a marketing campaign for a broader re-opening on July 1.
The experience won’t be like it was before coronavirus hit. The chain will either have to limit the available tickets for each showing, leaving about half its seats open. Or it may eliminate reserved seating, so customers can voluntarily spread themselves out when they arrive. Cleaning will have to be ramped up, and opening hours may be limited to accommodate the changes.
“How long that will take? We’re not completely certain,” said Mark Zoradi, Cinemark’s CEO, on a call with analysts and investors on Wednesday. “But we’re planning on anywhere from one to three months to light up that engine again and then to begin with higher profile, new product.”

The Casino

Las Vegas casino executives have discussed opening with as little as one-third of their rooms available, with limited entrances where guests’ temperatures could be checked. Casino employees would wear masks and gloves, and gamblers would sit at least a chair apart at blackjack tables.
The moves are similar to what is already occurring in Macau, the world’s largest gambling market, where casinos closed for 15 days in February and reopened under tight restrictions.
The companies are also discussing enhanced cleaning techniques, something unions have requested.

Fun Parks

The $19.3 billion U.S. theme park industry is also making plans, though no one knows when gates will reopen.
When they do, employees may be wearing masks and temperatures may be checked not only at the entrances but inside as well, said Dennis Speigel, a theme park consultant in Cincinnati. Operators may also institute virtual queues, where guests snag a place in line through an app and come to ride when it’s their turn.
“The theme park of the future is going to have to take a much different turn, from distancing to wanding to cleaning,” Speigel said. “I’ve never heard the fear in the voices that I’ve heard. Nobody knows what they’re going to be doing.”
Bloomberg News - With assistance from Thomas Buckley, Thomas Seal, Dana Hull, Natalie Wong, Julie Johnsson, Charlotte Ryan, Christoph Rauwald, Kyunghee Park, Gabrielle Coppola, Shiho Takezawa, Tian Ying, Chunying Zhang, Keith Naughton, Mary Schlangenstein, Justin Bachman, Layan Odeh, Jordyn Holman, Deirdre Hipwell, Robert Williams, Kim Bhasin, Jinshan Hong, Claire Che, Leslie Patton, Kelly Gilblom and Christopher Palmeri.
submitted by SesshamoNekodearuzo to what_couldve_been_if [link] [comments]

A homeless man has a holiday

During a freezing winters day, a homeless man was sitting on a bench that would normally overlook a lake in the middle of a seaside city, however the lake had been covered with snow from the previous night. As he is sitting there, a small girl runs out onto the icy lake chasing her ball and the homeless man hears the lake ice start to crack so he gets up and runs across the lake, scoops the girl up and runs back, all without making a sound. As he gets back a man runs towards him wearing a very expensive coat. When the man gets there, he says to the homeless man “Thank you so much for saving my only daughter, I’m very rich and can give you any reward that you could dream off”. Despite the homeless man telling him that he doesn’t need any reward, he eventually gives in and says that all he wants is £10 as that used to be a lot of money when he was a child and he didn’t want to take too much from the man. The rich man is mildly interested as to why the homeless man would want so little and so asks why that is the case, “well you see” replied the homeless man “I’ve been having a stressful time recently, so I really fancy going on a holiday”. The rich man chuckled at this, told the homeless man that he might have a hard time finding a holiday for that cheap but still wished him the best of luck.
The next day, the homeless man still full of happiness at the thought of a holiday walked into the travel agent nearest to him, walked right up to one of the staff and told them “Hi, I’m here for a holiday.” After asking for the budget for the holiday, the worker starts to apologise to the homeless man telling him “Our company doesn’t currently have any holidays for only £10 however I can look out back in storage in case there are any old holidays that have been taken out of the system due to no one buying them” and so the worker went into the back to look for a holiday for the homeless man as he felt sorry for him. After half an hour of waiting, the worker finally returned red in the face from the search looking happy and clutching a paper file, he walked up to the homeless man and said to him “You’re in luck! We have one cruise holiday that is just in your budget, and luckily for you it just so happens to be on a luxury cruise liner! The only stipulation is that you meet the captain down by the port tomorrow at midnight.” The homeless man doesn’t care about the weird rule and is overjoyed at the thought of a holiday, he happily takes his ticket and starts to head towards the nearest dock.
The next night, at midnight, the homeless man walks down to the port and is greeted by the biggest boat that he has ever seen. The boat towers two hundred meters above him and stretches back at least four hundred meters, the sides were a shining white even in the dead of night with perfectly round windows lining the side at regular intervals. The homeless man is amazed at his good fortune the homeless man starts to walk towards the ship. As he got nearer he saw a man in full uniform standing next to the gangplank smoking, the light of the cigarette just illuminating the man’s face. When the homeless man reached him, the captain threw what was left of his cigarette into the water behind him and looked at the homeless man with a tired smile, he introduced himself as the captain of the giant ship behind him and after checking the homeless man’s ticket he invited him onto the ship.
Walking onto the deck of the ship, the homeless man looked down at the ground behind him and marvelled at just how small everything seemed from on top the deck. The two of them continued walking until they reached a door marked “cabins”, they walked through, and the homeless man was met with grandeur that he’d never seen before. In front of him was the first-class cabin hallway, it was as high as a double-decker bus and as wide as three, the floor was pure marble making a beautiful pattern all along the floor, the walls were a perfect white with gold detailing linking between genuine Van Gogh’s and painting from other famous artists that sat between each mahogany door to each cabin. Above then were gold chandeliers that made the tapestry on the ceiling flicker with the candle light. They continued down a flight of stairs to the second-class level which was equally as magnificent, the only change being that the hallway was just a little smaller and the paintings just a little less expensive.
This continued as they went down the ship, passing casinos, ball rooms, restaurants, and the crew quarters, getting less and less extravagant, until they finally reached the very lowest point of the ship. This corridor was small and dingy, only just big enough for the two men to walk besides each other. They walked until they reached a single door at which the captain stopped and opened it for the homeless man. Inside was a room only four by four meters wide. The only things in the room were a bed, a bedside table and an alarm clock. Turning to the homeless man, the captain explained “Since this cruise usually cost people so much, we can’t let the first-class passengers see you as they will want a refund and our company will lose everything. Due to this, you can only go out during the night which is what the alarm clock is for. All facilities are open to you during your stay however if you go out during the day you will have to leave us. I hope that you enjoy your cruise.” The homeless man didn’t care about the overall look, he was just happy to finally have a room to himself regardless of quality and so agreed.
For the next few days, the homeless man had the time of his life. Sleeping by day, up and around the boat by night – he loved every second. Go Karting, archery, rock climbing, more food than he had ever seen in his life, everything was perfect.
On night, around a week or so into his stay, he found a diving pool while strolling around so he decided to give it a try. He climbed up the ladder for the diving board, curled his toes over the side of the board, looked down and bounced. He flew high into the air, turned at the very apex of his jump and went into the water like an arrow, barely a ripple went out from where he entered. Unknown to the homeless man, the ship’s captain had been watching then entire time as he had grown fond of the homeless man and his endless happiness regardless of his circumstances. The captain came walking up to the homeless man as he was getting out of the water and voiced his amazement, “Bloody hell, that was brilliant, I’ve never seen anything like that before, where did you learn to dive like that?” the homeless man was a little shocked that he had been watched but quickly got over it, “Well that was my first time actually. I’ve never had the chance to dive before.” The captain thought for a second before finally saying “You know what, with a talent like that I think everyone should see it. How’s this for an idea, you carry on training to dive and we’ll put on a show for the passengers. We’ll even pay you to perform and you can live on this ship in a bigger cabin” the homeless man barely thinks for even a second before enthusiastically replying “it’s a deal” and then while still wearing the biggest smile he could possible produce he got back to diving.
Over the next few days, the homeless man trained relentlessly, learning all sorts of tricks like spinning, front flips, back flips, absolutely everything he could think of that people might like.
Eventually it got to the day, a massive diving board had been erected specially for the event reaching all the way into the heavens. The homeless man walked out into the waiting crowd, all displaying shock at a homeless person suddenly walking into their midst. The homeless man walks up to the ladder of the diving board and starts to climb up
and up, and up, and up, and higher, and higher, the ship below him growing smaller, and smaller, and smaller, past the clouds, past an airplane with people looking out the windows in shock, until finally, he reached the top. The homeless man goes to the end of the diving board, looks at the below him, takes a deep breath, springs, and jumps.
He performs a graceful arc then starts to fall
and faster
and faster
the diving pool getting larger
and larger
the land getting closer and closer
he starter to do flips
front flips
back flips
spinning while falling
and faster until straight into the pool without a ripple
straight through the bottom of the pool
straight through first class
straight through second class
straight through the casinos
straight through the crew quarters
straight through the engines
straight through his own little room
straight through the steel hull of the ship
going into the water bellow like a bullet
straight into the rock of the seabed, drilling a 10-meter shaft in the process.
The homeless man struggled for air, his whole body screaming for it. He managed to just claw his way to the surface of the water to the deafening sound of applause from all those watching.
The captain threw the homeless man a lifebuoy and lifted the exhausted man back onto the boat before telling him “That was one of the most amazing things I have ever seen in my life, that was truly astonishing! But tell me, how did you manage to go through all of that and survive?”
The homeless man looks at the captain and gathers enough energy to tell him “Well you see, I’ve been a poor homeless man for all my life, and you must understand that I’ve been through many a hardship in my life.”
submitted by Kaspiaan to Jokes [link] [comments]

What's Happening in CT - 5/4-5/6

Friday, May 4th:
Saturday, May 5th:
Sunday, May 6:
submitted by SheCalledMePaul to Connecticut [link] [comments]

Endeavour - Cruise Liner Version

While the Genesis is the main transport vessel for passengers and modularity for luxury it IS rather small compared to ships we have today.
Would not the Endevour be perfect for a larger luxury linecruiser since the base hull itself have no direct specialization. It's one large modular hull.
The rear section could easily be designed into a floating casino, hotel and restaurant while the forward section can act as a lifeboat in combination with a few ships in the hangar.
submitted by Snarfbuckle to starcitizen [link] [comments]

stop shitting on janitors

i work at a fairly large and busy casino and resort, overnights. i'm just basic evs, we keep the surfaces of the casino floors and bathrooms clean. mostly emptying ashtrays, picking up trash, straightening chairs, cleaning the toilets and bathroom surfaces, and cleaning up spills. on slower nights we dust and polish machines. it's easy work for the most part, but necessary to keep the casino running smoothly. and it pays about 1.5 x minimum wage which is a whole lot better than most jobs around here. (small town Oklahoma)
i hear so many comments from guests about how i should have gone to college or how i need to get a real job. they say i should move to a better city, they say these things as if i cannot hear them. i think we make a lot of guests nervous as we have to police each row of machines several times most nights to empty their ashtrays, pick up their trash and sweep debris off of the floor.
most people in my department have degrees or are working on degrees, some of the elderly janitors (most of them are tribal elders and could easily get a desk job with the particular Indian Nation who own the casino) simply do not believe in retiring from work and choose to stay busy through this job. a lot of people start in our department and work for long enough (3 months) to be able to transfer to another department within the casino, better paying, more respected departments. people in my department haven't settled, no one wants to be a janitor forever, most of us just need this job for now. i get paid more than i would if i transferred to most of the available desk jobs. i don't think i could stand sitting for most of the workday (night) either. and working nights is only readily available in my department because apparently it's the least appealing shift in the least appealing department, but it's perfect for me because i need my days open for classes.
the only bad part of my job has been one shitty coworker and the rest is just guests behavior. guests of the casino not only talk trash and speak down to us, they leave trash EVERYWHERE. they make insanely gross messes, they get drunk and puke all over the place, they leave chewing tobacco spit and phlegm in ashtrays, they spill drinks and food all over, a lot of them ash their cigarettes onto the floor despite the overabundance of ashtrays we keep next to every machine or seat. they spit sunflower seed hulls on the floor, piss on the chairs, one time a lady walked in a dress across the floor and without even pausing she shit on the floor. they bring in registered emotional support animals (note: i got to pet a lemur once because of this) that piss and shit on the floor because they keep them inside without a walk for too long.
and speaking of shit, people find creative ways to spread shit all over the bathrooms, as if they've never used a toilet before. people stand on the toilet seats and squat, getting piss and shit everywhere. they pill the entire contents our of the paper toilet seat covers and stuff them into the toilets. i have to fish these out with my hands to unclog the toilets. they unravel entire toilet roll dispenser contents and strew them about the floor. in the men's restroom specifically, they piss anywhere but the urinals, they clog the urinals with cigarette butts and chewing tobacco. in both the men's, women's, and family restrooms it is not at all uncommon to find drug paraphernalia, used condoms, or even to walk in on people using drugs or engaged in sexual acts.
needles are a job hazard, i got stuck my first week before i'd finished training and learned how to avoid them and how common they were. i was tested repeatedly last year and luckily i didn't contract any diseases or viruses.
these people yell and scream at us not to touch their machines, say we're bad luck, take out their anger on us and our bathrooms. as if we've forced them to come to the casino and essentially give away their money. it's often like babysitting a bunch of toddlers in adult bodies.
but overall most guests don't interact with us at all, and a few are even friendly. tips are rare but greatly appreciated, i also appreciate that everyone gamling or visiting the arcade or restaurants or laser tag or the pool or spa or bowling or movie theater or attending concerts are all the reason i have my job. i am just ranting because i find the rude and aggressive behavior to be over the top and completely unnecessary.
i do love my job. i'm not allowed to say this but i got to meet KISS, and i stood a few feet from Kevin Hart which was cool. i get to meet a lot of "emotional support" dogs whose owners are usually happy to see them being petted and fawned over. i meet a lot of interesting people and have established a rapport with many of our regular overnight guests. one man who is a regular passes out two dollar bills which is really neat. on a lot of the slow nights i don't have a lot of work to do and our supervisors and managers let us socialize and walk around goofing off (within reason) as long as our jobs are done.
i've been encouraged by the Indian Nation i work for to go back to school (they'll reimburse me up to 5k per semester) so i can start a career someday working for the Nation.
the very best part of this job is that i've met the best friends i've ever had through it. i spent a lot of years allowing people to use me and then spent a while very socially isolated until coming to this job. i met and am building relationships witha handful of people who care about me and don't care what i do or don't have, they just want me around and in their lives no matter what.
sorry this rant isn't entirely about things i'm angry about, i suppose it turned into a rant about things i'm grateful for at the end.
submitted by stankpoon to rant [link] [comments]

[Speculation/Idea]: Cruise Ships/Passenger Ferries?

I know it's a very large post, so bear with me here. I've been thinking about this for a while and I want to share my thoughts.
As the title suggests, this idea is about large sized cruise ships and passenger ferries to transport players across very large systems or between other systems though very specific jump points only accessible/survivable by these ships and their set of components. These transports would move large numbers of players, NPCs, their cargo/belongings, and (in the case of ferries) their ships between locations that would otherwise be difficult to traverse in personal ships. This would also give players an alternative transport option in the event their own ships could make the journey themselves or if players just choose not to use their own ship's jump drive to travel between locations.
I'm aware that in Star Citizen you can purchase jump drives and install them onto your ships so you can traverse jump points and cover large distances. However, we've seen that not every ship will come with a stock jump drive and with Ben's response here (#5) from a while back, there are definitely costs and considerations regarding jump drives. Things like fuel efficiency and quality of jump drives would affect player choices.
I thought about this as an alternative for players who may find themselves in circumstances where using their own jump drive would either not be possible or not be favorable; for example: * New ship without jump drive (possibly straight from factory, like MISC releasing a new ship) * Ship was recently destroyed * Ship's jump drive damaged during a fight * Ship recently replaced by insurance company without jump drive * Out of fuel for jump drive * Recharge time hasn't finished yet * Can't traverse certain jump points with current jump drive * Quality of jump drive does not favor survivability
And definitely other scenarios that may place the player in a situation without a jump drive. If I were shipwrecked in a system like Terra I would like to somehow catch a comfortable ride back to Earth where my hangar is and return home (assuming I still have any funds leftover from having my Superhornet explode).
Enter the cruise ships. Now we've all seen ships like the 890 Jump and its passenger capabilities, but a ship like the 890 is more of a luxury yacht for forty or fifty people rather than a cruise ship meant to transport thousands of passengers. I'm thinking of ships on the scale of Bengal Carriers and such. In addition to the transport capabilities mentioned above, players can explore these ships during the course of the journey: hang out at on-board pubs, browse the shops, enjoy the theaters, or maybe pick up contracts/missions/jobs while on the ship (assassinations maybe?). Like cruise ships of today, passengers can enjoy a number of attractions aboard the ship while in transit to their destination including:
The ship doesn't even have to be moving either; picture one of these as a sort of mobile space station that you can visit while in-system for certain parts/wardrobe/items that can only be obtained by traveling to other systems (like the Banu Merchantman). As a game that emphasizes on immersion and experiencing a sci-fi setting, I think that having cruise ships with these ammenities would add a new atmosphere for players to experience within the game.
Ferries could also provide players with a way to bring their ship along for the journey. Owning an M50 would be spectacular, with its racing and dogfighting capabilities. However, without a stock jump drive it'd be difficult to travel between systems if you wanted to. With ferries, you could purchase a boarding ticket, park your M50 inside a ferry's ship bay and enjoy the ride to another star system at a fancy restaurant.
And for orgs that like piracy and raiding, you've got yourself an extremely large mark that could make a few hours worth of work turn arond several weeks worth of bad luck! A fleet of cutlasses, some caterpillars, maybe even an Idris could attack one of these carriers (maybe a MISC Hull variant?) and board and raid these cruise ships. Player passengers could then even choose to defend the ship as a pilot with their own ships or take up arms with the ship's crew in some FPS combat against incoming pirates.
There's a bunch of opportunities with large public transport ships that I'd like to see in Star Citizen if at all possible. While dogfighting, close quarters FPS combat, exploration and salvaging are things that I certainly enjoy doing, I'd also like to walk around and experience the life of being a citizen or non-citizen living in the Star Citizen universe, sort of in the same way that Skyrim and Oblivion drew me in with collectible and readable lorebooks, conversations with NPCs, NPCs conversing and even fighting other NPCs, and interacting with this liveable world (shouting cows off of a cliff because I can :P). What do you guys think about having explorable and liveable cruise ships and ship ferries in SC?
EDIT: Formatting
submitted by TKuronuma to starcitizen [link] [comments]

[X-post from /r/starcitizen] [RP] The UEE Kashgar

My forum post if you would rather post there.
Designation: UEE Kashgar
Class: Hull E cargo Ship
Captain: Harvey Galus II
The Kashgar is a sorry sight to see, after over two decades of service the old girl has seen better days. Pitted metal and patchwork plating dot the 370 meter ship, combined with the graffitied storage containers and “trash wake” it’s more a flying slum than a star ship. The Kashgar is the most welcome sight on the fringe however.
Every storage pod on the Kashgar has been converted, some are tenements for the over two hundred people who live and work aboard, the rest are shops, restaurants, casinos, bars, and more. The Kashgar is a floating bazaar, a small town drifting through the night. Traveling in its wake are a small fleet of ships, some are for security, others trash or fuel. The Kashgar moves from system to system to peddle its wears and to avoid the law and pirates alike. There is something for everyone aboard the Kashgar, what is your story?
There are 512 storage pods on the Kashgar as well as a small fleet of ships traveling in its wake. You are somehow involved with the Kashgar, either as part of the crew, a tenant/shop keeper, one of the ships following, or simply visiting. Please, tell us your story.
submitted by kynmites to starcitizenrp [link] [comments]

UEE Kashgar (RP)

My forum post if you would rather post there.
Designation: UEE Kashgar
Class: Hull E cargo Ship
Captain: Harvey Galus II
The Kashgar is a sorry sight to see, after over two decades of service the old girl has seen better days. Pitted metal and patchwork plating dot the 370 meter ship, combined with the graffitied storage containers and “trash wake” it’s more a flying slum than a star ship. The Kashgar is the most welcome sight on the fringe however.
Every storage pod on the Kashgar has been converted, some are tenements for the over two hundred people who live and work aboard, the rest are shops, restaurants, casinos, bars, and more. The Kashgar is a floating bazaar, a small town drifting through the night. Traveling in its wake are a small fleet of ships, some are for security, others trash or fuel. The Kashgar moves from system to system to peddle its wears and to avoid the law and pirates alike. There is something for everyone aboard the Kashgar, what is your story?
There are 512 storage pods on the Kashgar as well as a small fleet of ships traveling in its wake. You are somehow involved with the Kashgar, either as part of the crew, a tenant/shop keeper, one of the ships following, or simply visiting. Please, tell us your story.
submitted by kynmites to starcitizen [link] [comments]

[Table] IAmA RMS Titanic Historian / Artifact Specialist, the 100 year anniversary of her sinking is coming up, AMA!

Verified? (This bot cannot verify AMAs just yet)
Date: 2012-04-04
Link to submission (Has self-text)
Link to my post
Questions Answers
I don't know of any Titanic-related conspiracy theories offhand, but have you heard of any? If so, what are some of the wackiest ones? Do any of them hold water? (zing!) No Titanic conspiracies hold water, and I've heard 'em all -- that the builders cut costs with cheaper quality iron / rivets (there were low quality iron rivets on the ship, but only in particular areas, and for different reasons than cost), the insurance fraud, the mummy, that it was a curse from God for Lightoller's off-handed "God himself couldn't sink this ship!" claim (which probably didn't happen), the "NO POPE" thing...
Were there any other passengers with tales of heroism like Molly Brown? Any cool facts about her? Did the band really keep playing until the end? Any cool facts about them? We often hear the Titanic described as "unsinkable." I know she only took on this moniker after sinking, but was she really built as well as she could've been and this was just a freak accident? Or did they overestimate her capability? Molly Brown wasn't all that heroic like common tales about her tell, regarding the Titanic, though she WAS an amazing person -- philanthropist, women's rights activist, a right decent gal. As far as the Titanic went, it's true that she didn't initially want to go into a lifeboat -- she kept giving her seats away, until three men dumped her overboard into one just as it was being launched. She also reportedly took up an oar (lots of women did) and gave her coat to one of the engineers that had survived, and had gone into a lifeboat in nothing but a tank top and pants. Yes! William Wallace Hartley's band really did play until the end, and they really did break before the ship went down, Hartley started to play solo, and then the band rejoined him. No cool facts necessarily, other than that their talent was unquestionable -- White Star Line musicians were expected to have complete memorization of over 500 pieces of music, and be able to perform them with the director simply giving the song's number in the book. The cellist had an interesting little fling with a 2nd class lady, often going to her cabin to give "private concerts". She survived -- the cellist didn't. The musicians travelled in 2nd class accommodations. The Titanic really was described as "nigh unsinkable", and for all practical purposes, she was -- designed to survive head-on collisions, beachings, impacts with other ships. In fact, her older sister ship was practically a hero in World War 1 -- she survived several torpedo and mine strikes as a troop transport, carrying over 400,000 soldiers across her tour. Titanic's accident truly was a freak accident of circumstance, of ignorance, and of confidence, to a lot of extent. The Olympic may have faired so well because after Titanic's sinking, Olympic's bulkhead doors were added and reinforced and a lot of other little security additions.
How do you know the band played untill the end? Wouldn't anyone who witnessed this also die? A lot of witnesses from lifeboats who had stayed somewhat near the ship were able to clearly hear the band until the ship was listing too much to stay upright.
There seems to be a number of elements that contributed to this incident. Outside of simply "hitting an iceberg", what, in your opinion, is the single most important event/failure/person/whatever, that caused the tragedy? Probably the Marconi wireless radio being down. Radio staff weren't hired by White Star Line, and they didn't take orders from the officers, except in times of emergencies. Any radio traffic coming to or from the ship was mostly based on the operators' whim, and they worked for tips, so mostly they were interested in relaying passenger messages to or from shore. The radio had been down April 13th, so on the 14th the operators were scrambling to catch up with the work load. So when important messages, such as the Californian's "Surrounded by ice on all sides" came through, they were either ignored, or worse, the operator snapped back negatively. Back then wireless communication was done on a single band, and the Californian's radio message jammed the operator's transmission to Cape Rice. So he replied to the Californian something like "Shutup, keep out, I'm in with Cape Rice", instead of relaying the message to the bridge. That /also/ upset the Californian's radio operator. He ended his shift hours early and didn't turn on the recorder for his radio (because it would keep him up). The Titanic's CQD / SOS messages fell on deaf ears for the Californian.
My husband's maternal grandfather is a descendant of the Phillips' family. The same family of one of the radio staff. Amazing! There's lots of information on him. He was one of the true heroes that night, sending messages up until the second that the radio stopped working.
WOW. This is amazing. Someone not passing on communications is unfathomable to me, as a soldier. It was pretty common, actually, though it was as a direct result of the Titanic disaster that all ships of a certain size were required to have 24 hour manned radios, and to prioritize any and all warnings.
I thought the guys in the watch tower watching Jack and Rose make out and not having binoculars was the cause of the crash... Sorry, just got back from the movie. Haha.. Another bothersome part of the scene... Jack and Rose would be severely chastised for going onto the forecastle deck!
It's Cape Race. Huh.
I may have been saying that wrong my entire career.
Changes that should have been put in place ages ago seldom are until some huge disaster happens. Sad really :( Let's hope we don't forget that again too soon.
What inaccuracies, if any, did you see in James Cameron's "Titanic"? Oh man, all kinds. They get the gist of the event right, but they put WAY too much effort into making J. Bruce Ismay look like the bad guy for suggesting the lifeboat situation was fine. Having 24 lifeboats instead of the "ideal" 60 was a practical decision -- having 60 full-sized lifeboats on top of the Titanic was a huge weight and storage issue, and would've rendered the boat deck largely useless. Plus, and this requires historical context, the Titanic was carrying far more lifeboats already than the boards of regulations had deemed necessary. The lifeboat regulations were based on information from the 1890's -- so 22 years of advancements in ship size wouldn't have been accounted for. They required a minimum # of lifeboats aboard a ship, -OR- a minimum # of deckspace devoted for lifeboats, both limits of which the Titanic already far exceeded.
According to Neil deGrasse Tyson, the night sky was also wrong. That's probably the biggest inaccuracy of them all. "biggest", I see what you did there. :D.
Also when the ship was sinking the actors were just walking through what was supposed to be ICE COLD water like it was no big deal. Yeah.. It wasn't convincing.
Isn't it also true the lifeboats were half empty? I read somewhere that if all of them would have been full 50% would have made it off. A bit over, even, I believe the total lifeboat capacity was in the 1400's, out of 2,228 passengers and crew. The lifeboats were lowered early and half manned for a lot of reasons, from poor loading procedures to rushing to get them down to boats simply rolling off as the ship's list became more and more severe.
What do you think of the Titanic conspiracy? Could the Olympic have gone down that fateful night and not the Titanic? Pardon me for cheating, but I'm gonna repost a reply I made in a previous thread. :)
The 'insurance fraud' stories are patently ridiculous, but they make for a good story. Happily I never retold those as half-truths in my time at the exhibition! :P For those who don't know, the Olympic was originally damaged pretty badly a few times, namely when she threw her screw in one accident and was rammed by the HMS Hawke another occasion. Conspiracy theorists suggest that the repairs to the Olympic were so costly and the Titanic insured so highly that they'd just call one ship the other, swim the Olympic (falsely called "Titanic") out to the sea, sink her, and collect a fat check.
It could never have happened for a few reasons, namely that the Titanic and Olympic were NOT completely identical ships. The Titanic included a covered promenade deck, a different layout for the first class cabins, unique restaurants and the grand staircase. Her steel was also labelled with her hull number, 401, or with her Board of Trade Registration number, 131428. The ship at the bottom of the ocean right now has those numbers, the covered promenade, the grand staircase, et cetera. Basically, if they had decided to swap ships for insurance fraud, they would have literally reconstructed the Olympic nearly bottom up, which would've easily negated any savings from the insurance fraud itself.
Any neat stories of heroism/humanity that you know of? The story of one of the richest men aboard, Benjamin Guggenheim, escorting his "date" onto a lifeboat, then heading into the parlour with his valet. When someone tried to usher him to the deck, he said "We are dressed in our best, and prepared to go down like gentlemen." He went into the smoking room and played a hand of cards as the ship sank. It was represetnted in the movie more or less accurately.
What is your favorite story to tell regarding the Titanic? The story about how the ship was on fire. O_O.
So one of the contributors to the tragedy (though it probably wouldn't have made a huge difference either way) was that, shortly after the ship left her berth in Belfast, she had a coal fire in one of her bunkers. It took days to put out because the fire had started deep in the coal pile. The captain was made aware of it, but decided to continue to steam on anyway. It took three days to get to where the fire was, and another day to put it out. Throughout this time it had very seriously damaged one of the bulkhead doors, and when the water pressed against this particular door, it most likely collapsed and hastened the Titanic's sinking.
Where was the ship when they realized there was a problem? Would it have been practical for them to head to port? They were aware of the coal fire from day one, but they're somewhat common occurences. The clincher there was that, until they finally left Cove, there were only 3 people to dig out thousands of tons of coal, and it took days to get down to the smoldering coals and finally put them out.
Cobh. Right, sorry -- "Queenstown" is more accurate, since Cobh wasn't called Cobh until the 1920's I believe, but I've never known its exact spelling. I only knew it because proud irishmen would pronounce it "Cove" while telling me the poster labeling the city "Queenstown" was inaccurate. :P.
What got you interested in Titanic? How did you start? To be honest, I didn't give two shits about the Titanic until I got the job with the help of a family member who had connections. They originally hired me to be a greeter, but when I demonstrated a proficiency in some other things, they decided I was probably brainy enough to retain enough information to do it. So, I studied hard, and fell in love. :)
Just so you know, I've been studying everything Titanic since I was seven (that's over a decade of information collecting, here), and I love you and wish I had your job. That's amazing -- definitely keep it up. Please feel free to inquire anything of me. Also, I love you too. <3.
Jebus McCreebus. It's not what you know, it's who you know. On the strip, especially.
Have you ever talked to someone who has actually been to the real thing? If so, what did they tell you? (I WILL save enough money to go there before it dissolves.) We had an iceberg for that purpose, a "real" one (in that it was a frozen wall of ice...) It was freshwater, though, so didn't measure up to the real chill. Still, we frequently had guests press their hands to it to see how long they could keep their hands to it. Once I had informed them that Carrot Top had licked the thing, they balk quickly. ;P.
Why didn't Rose share the door with Jack? Plus how funny was that one part where the dude fell from the back of the boat, hit the railing and spun into the water below? Because Jack was 3rd class. Being seen with him on the same door would be a TOTAL social faux pas.
Who do you think has the most interesting survival story from the incident? and the most honorable death? The most interesting survival story...... Probably Charles Joughin's, who was represented in the film even (the white-clad fellow beside Jack and Rose as they ride the forecastle railing down in the ship's final moments). He was a heavy set fellow, and allegedly, had wrapped leathers around himself and imbibed a fifth of scotch and other drinks before going into the water. Allegedly, he survived for hours in the icy water before being pulled onto the overturned collapsible B, where he stood for hours more until being pulled into another lifeboat with the other survivors of Collapsible B.
The most honorable death by far goes to the "firemen" -- a ship's crew who shovels coal into the fires to keep the ship powered. None of them survived. They continued powering coal to allow the radio to continue transmitting long until the lifeboats were completely gone -- the ship didn't lose power until just a few moments before she split and sank. To this day, I was told, many Cunard "firemen" and engineers still wear the patch that those 13 heroes wore in commemoration.
I always wondered if the power going out late in the film was real or not! Thanks. Of course. =)
What do you think about the similarities between the ship Titan in the book Futility and the RMS Titanic? OH MAN I FORGOT ABOUT THIS UNTIL YOU MENTIONED IT!
Crazy cool coincidences, so for those who don't know / don't want to click the link, basically this book came out in 1890's that was a social commentary about "the world's grandest liner", full of the world's wealthiest people, sailing across the north atlantic to New York and striking an ice berg and sinking, where nearly all passengers died because of a lack of lifeboats. It was pretty crazy!
More interesting than that book in my opinion is the fact that the Titanic was screening a movie about a sinking ocean liner when it got hit by the iceberg! Nope! Snopes trolled me good! Link to Gotta watch them troll posts ;P.
Is there any way the ship could have been saved from the moment it hit the iceberg? something they could have done, maybe? They could've stopped instead of going straight to full reverse, they could've not let David Blair leave the ship with the key to the crow's nest binoculars in his pocket, they could've stayed in Belfast to put out the fire in the coal bunker, they could've relayed more iceberg warnings to the bridge, they could've pushed back the launch date to finish the ship (she was about 1/3 of her cabins empty because they weren't finished).... All kinds of things, tragically. :(
So if 1/3 of the cabins were empty, how many spots was that? At least those hypothetical guests didn't die. Her total capacity was ~3,550.
Wow the ship wasn't finished? Is there anything else interesting related to that you might talk about? Great ama, thanks for doing it! Hmm.. Lots of interesting little facts. Only three funnels on the ship were real -- the 4th funnel was fake, but added to make the ship look more grand. It was carrying a lot of weird things, too -- an interesting one is that one woman claimed as she wandered the ship the night of the collision that she heard a cock's crow, which was considered to be a deathly omen. She may well have -- the Titanic was carrying 13 chickens and a rooster!
Are there any artifacts from the sinking that you believe should not be recovered out of respect for the victims, as many claim? I'm not much for "remembering the dead" as it were -- they're dead, they don't need things, they don't care about their stuff because they're dead. From a personal perspective, I don't think anything about the ship should be sacred, however I really enjoyed the policy of RMS Titanic, Inc. to return any artifacts to surviving family if they can prove it's theirs. I think that's definitely a social responsibility for recovered artifacts.
Are their still human remains recoverable trapped inside the hull, would you consider these should be left. There would not be any remains, no. The entire ship is open to ocean life at the bottom, and crustaceans and fish would have cleaned out everything, including the bones.
What artifacts have been discovered and returned to families since you've worked there? If none, what do you know of? A pocket watch was one -- returned to the daughter of a survivor, then returned to RMS Titanic, Inc. upon her death.
What's your favorite titanic related joke? Also, what's the spookiest fact you know... also, how do you feel about Battleship? This horrifying gift-shop item is probably my favorite / most horrifying "joke". The spookiest "Facts" probably had to do with the exhibit themselves, and I retold them frequently, even though I'm a big skeptic and didn't believe a word of it until some really weird shit happened to me one night (though I still kind of rationalize that away as different things). Battleship the game? I love it. :o.
I'd say this is probably in poorer taste than that ice cube tray: Link to Yeeowch....
Oh man, don't leave me hanging like that. Now you have to tell me EVERY spooky or weird fact you know about the Titanic. :P. The big one was the story that a journalist aboard had told a woman to impress her, most likely -- he said there was a cursed mummy aboard the ship. This was "corraborated" by one couple who decided against boarding at the last moment because an old woman said "that ship is cursed". There was no mummy, though, and it's no surprise an old woman thought the ship was cursed -- hundreds of thousands of people saw her off and 2300 people were aboard. SOMEBODY had to be a doomsayer.
What happened that night? I'll preface this by saying I was in a casino, underneath an empty IMAX theatre, and above a casino floor. Noises could've come from anywhere.
spooky voice
Okay so the place had 16 rooms, and near the end is a room that's designed to be completely dark. House lights shine special blue filtered lights on a 15 ton piece of the titanic's hull and the room it's in is huge. I was cleaning some cases after hours, and the house lights had come on, and I hear some voices on the other side of the room. The door is blocked from view by the big piece, and I think its my supervisor, so I go take a peek into the previous room. This room is /also/ dark, followed by an even darker hallway, and two even darker rooms after that, and I hear a sort've ghostly giggling noise. I assume some guests got stuck or I missed them or something and it's after hours, so I need to go get them out. Each preceeding room I walk into, the opposite door shuts, so I start hurrying, running through -- I go past the promenade deck exhibit, it's getting darker, the laughing gets louder, it's getting weirder. Finally, I get into the Grand Staircase room -- the stairs go up to a light gallery. I peek around, nothing up there, so I leave. As soon as I am back out that room, I hear what sounds like footsteps, like someone just took a running leap down the steps. TOTALLY freaks me the hell out.
At this point I get on my wrist radio (secret service style), telling my supervisor "There are kids playing around in here, check the cameras for me". He says he sees nothing, nobody's in there but me. I check all the doors, locked in and out, even the fire gate is down. So, a little freaked out, I return to that big piece room, and start hearing footsteps behind me. I turn around, and the footsteps sound like such that, were I looking at somebody, they'd have been stomping, hard, up to my face -- but, naturally, nobody's there. At THAT point, I just threw my rag and spray bottle, said "Nope!" and told my supervisor I'm done. He wouldn't go in afterwards either -- the cleaning lady had to recover my stuff the next morning.
I remember thinking when I went on one of these things in 8th grade that it might be in bad taste. I still went on it 50+ times tho, those things were ridiculously fun. May you step on a lego for your disrespect!
I bet that old woman shook her head ruefully and said "I told them so" to herself. I wonder if she naysayed everything, and this was the big payoff of her life, or if she'd just had a weird feeling about this one. Yeah, kind of like a hypochondriac getting cancer. It probably validated every worry she ever had in life.
You need to sex this up, flesh it out a bit, and submit it over at /nosleep. It'll be a hit. I'll do just that. Sexin' things up is a personal favorite activity.
How many artifacts have been recovered in total? During my time at the exhibition, over 5,500 artifacts had been recovered, ~320 of which were in my exhibit. A lot of it is coal -- RMS TItanic, Inc. and Premier Exhibitions, Inc. sell the coal in knick-knacks.
Where can I buy authentic titanic coal, btw? Online or at any RMS Titanic gift shop, basically.
What would you say the coolest artifact recovered was and, if necessary, why? My favorite artifacts were culturally related things -- it was apparently a practice for gentleman to carry "story cards" to entertain women or children in a pinch. They were small postcard-sized pages with tiny stories printed in them. I loved reading those!
Wow that's pretty cool so if conversations went dry they would, well, whip it out? Hahahaha.. YES.
Any idea why they went out of style? Those sound awesome. It was completely awesome! They had snarky cards too, for souvenirs, I suspect. We had an artifact postcard that said something like "If you see a woman in a pretty dress, don't talk to her -- go buy the dress. It's cheaper" or something.
Well, that sounds nice, but are there efforts to recover that freaking necklace that bitch threw back in the ocean? The necklace was fictional. :)
Do you believe the theory that when the protestants were building the Titanic in Belfast, the Catholics were busy making the ice-berg? As an ex-catholic, I can independently confirm that this is 100% true. :D.
If this is a bit too personal, please disregard: What's your story on becoming an ex-catholic? It's Ask Me Anything, after all! Not a terrifically interesting story, though. I was raised as a softcore catholic for a while, and I kind of accepted that this Jesus dude had died for my sins around easter and is born around Christmas and I have to hang out with family on both occasions. Around high school I really started to pursue the priesthood as my mother pressured me to, but as a lot of ex-catholics will tell you, the #1 way to make an atheist is to make them read the bible. I became disenchanted with it, embraced rationalism, and the rest is history.
Knowing what you know, if you had been on the Titanic as she was going down, what would have been your approach to survive? Sheesh... Find leathers, gathering mattresses. There was a little Japanese fellow (I wish I remembered his name, sorry!) who strapped himself to a door and a mattress. He survived, even, being pulled aboard by officer Lowe as he searched for survivors. He was frozen, and given a coat and a blanket by some of the passengers. When he warmed up though he even took an oar. Unfortunately, his home country didn't look so kindly on his survival. It shamed his family, and he died alone.
his home country didn't look so kindly on his survival. It shamed his family, and he died alone. Wait, what? Why? An honor code, I think. That he survived where so many women and children didn't implied that he was somehow a coward -- that one of them could have survived if he hadn't.
So is it possible that as every person on board had a mattress, that they might have survived if they had been employed as flotation devices? Or at least increased their chances, if they'd strapped a few mattresses to a door like Masabumi had.
Not all of them, certainly, but it might've helped.
You are referring to Masabumi Hosono and yes, in those days his behaviour would be looked upon as shameful. These days, not so much. Exactly, that's his name! Thank you =)
Following up on that particular topic: could the eddies created by the ship sinking have been fightable for people sinking with the ship? If not, how far would one have had to be away from the sinking ship to not be pulled down? Reports from witnesses indicated that was no suction whatsoever -- Charles Joughin was riding the stern rail down "like an elevator" and stepped off the ship into the water without getting his hair wet. Mythbusters has an episode about what forces are required to suck someone down into water after a sinking ship.
Did anything you find really catch you by surprise? Tiny-ass clothing. I'm a bigger guy, and people were an average of a foot shorter back then than we are today. Some of the books were in immaculate condition, too.
Oh -- also, "Calling Cards". We had some. It's a phrase based on a real thing! You would call upon a visitor, and the butler / valet / greeter would take your calling card, take it to the master of the estate and recite its contents. Then they'd return, and give you your card back, or invite you in.
Have you ever given tours to survivors of the Titanic? How did they respond? Overall, how emotional do people get when learning about it? Never to a survivor -- by the time I had the job, there was only one last living survivor, Melvina Dean, died shortly after. To living relatives of survivors, though, somewhat frequently, and they were always very overcome with emotion.
Given that this exhibit was on the strip, people's reactions were all over the place, but the cost was high enough ($32 for a single adult ticket O_O) that generally only people that really were interested came in. A lot of tears.
I've always heard that the Titanic's rudder was far too small to properly steer the ship around, say a floating iceberg. Are there any other fundamental design flaws like this that contributed to the disaster? Were these design flaws addressed in Titanic's sister ships like Olympic? The Titanic's rudder size was fine -- the problem was that the rudder was directly in front of the largest of the ship's three screws, which was also the only reversing screw. This plays a huge part in the sinking -- when Lee called the bridge with "Iceberg right ahead", officer Murdoch put her screws into "full reverse" instead of stopping. The screw just slammed into gear and started turning immediately, churning millions of tiny bubbles -- think of it like locking your wheels in an emergency stop instead of edging the brakes to slow down. It's possible that this decision was the final nail in the coffin for Titanic. As far as I know, this was not addressed in the Titanic's sister ships.
The center screw was the smallest, and was the only one that did not reverse. Edit** Position when the order to go hard to starboard was put, that is. In those days people didn't refer to which direction you wanted to turn by which direction you intended to go, but rather which direction to point the Rudder. The rudder turns to the right, "starboard", and pushes the nose of the ship left, "port".
Hindsight being 20/20...was there anything at all the crew, captain could have done to keep the ship afloat after the impact had they known immediately what happened, how bad the damage was? Yes -- when the ship first hit, Murdoch ordered the ship full reverse, then stopped. Captain Smith then ordered the ship half ahead, changing the course to Halifax, thinking he could perhaps dock there as an emergency. (This also contributed to the difficulty in finding the ship -- she was some 13 miles I believe northwest of her last posted position because nobody was informed of this change of course.) The damage to the hull of the titanic acted like a "scoop" in that sense, pushing water in and causing greatly hastened flooding, before the Captain understood the extent of the damage and ordered the ship stopped. Keep in mind though that this ship was massive... it took 45 minutes for the ship's carpenter, then the Captain himself to "sound" the ship, walking back and forth along it to ascertain damage.
Would the ship have still sunk had they decided to stay dead in the water (no pun intended)? Yes, it would still have sunk, but perhaps given them a few hours longer to fill the lifeboats. Chances are high the ship would still have been gone by the time the Carpathia arrived, though.
So was the sinking inevitable, then? Yes -- after the strike, sinking was inevitable.
Given that the ship crashed the way it did, is there a possible scenario/way to save the ship at all? Not if you're referring to once the ship collided, but there were a dozen ways beforehand that the tragedy may have been avoided entirely!
Did you ever play a PC game back in the 90s called Titanic: Adventure out of Time? What are your thoughts? I thought it was pretty cool the way they reconstructed the whole ship, but alas you can't walk through all the nooks and crannies. I've heard about it, but never gotten to play it! I wish...
There are a small group of programmers that are rebuilding the game with the Cryengine 3 used to power Crysis 2. Here is an old video they did and their Facebook page, full of screenshots of their most recent work. I think they are trying to release it by the 100th anniversary on the 14th. SO MANY AWESOMES.
What do you think fascinates people so much about the sinking of the Titanic in comparison to other "transport catastrophes" such as the Hindenburg disaster? Only that it kept coming up. Even in context of the time, the Titanic was forgotten about fairly quickly -- the great war, the great depression and World War 2 were quick to follow, relatively. Larger ships were released just the following year. If it weren't for her discovery and subsequent dives, she'd have never been revived in the 80's, then James Cameron's film of course created a huge resurgence.
Last updated: 2012-04-09 06:23 UTC
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