Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Mike: Evan's Knife

This story was, in my opinion, the funniest moment of the cruise. Lindsey was showing about six of us how to splice rope on the tonnage hatch. Evan, a crew member, was busy hacking away with his knife because, occasionally, a finished splice had to have its loose ends trimmed off or an aborted splice had to be excised altogether. Seeing this, Lucas proceeded to tell him how to cut lines properly, saying, “No, you don’t saw lines! It ruins the lay. You have to put your knife on it, take your marlin spike, and just give it a good whack.” Taking the advice to heart, he put a piece of line on the chopping block pressed the blade of his knife down on it. With his other hand, he drew his marlin spike far back and brought it down swiftly on the back of his knife.

CLANK! Well, for all his enthusiasm, I can say this much for Evan: the rope was indeed severed. His mighty blow, however, had also severed the hilt of his knife from the blade, which was firmly lodged in the chopping block. We rolled with laughter as Evan furiously waved his one-inch stub of useless steel. Even Evan had to admit that he only got what he had paid for. Earlier in the voyage, Evan had mentioned that he had bought his knife from Bed, Bath, and Beyond and had sawed and sharpened it into shape. Evan wrenched his blade from the block of wood, uttered a few choice words about the quality of his purchase, and solemnly committed both parts of his knife to a watery grave.