Wednesday, 12 October 2016

The Ceremony

Yesterday I turned from a pollywog into a trusty shellback and I like to think it was done with some style. If you read my last post, you’ll be aware that my co-conspirator, Paul, and I had weaponized the slops by pouring them into condoms. We stole flour and old coffee grounds and put it into paper bags to burst over the crew. War paint was applied (shoe polish) and our fellow pollywogs rallied. The plan was explained; we would ambush the crew as they came to search for us along the deck. Splitting into two groups, the first would draw their interest by singing abusive songs and the second would attack from the rear. We tooled up and went for it.
Rallying the troops

We fought a gallant action. I personally had the satisfaction of landing a slops balloon straight on the cook’s chest. Which was fairly wonderful if only because my aim is never good and a liquid filled condom is not the most aerodynamic of projectiles! Watching the cook getting hit with his own slops was fantastic. Paul managed to get hold of a hose and soak most of the opposition before a glorious assault with a bag of flour in which he himself was captured but managed to coat someone with a whole bag of white powder.
Paul and the Flour

 Kerry achieved high distinction by hitting the purser with his own cudgel! But the day came to a close when we were cornered by a high pressure sea water hose used by a giant amongst the stewards, which blinded most of us with salt water. We did, however, have the incredible satisfaction of watching Maddy launch a sneak attack on the steward from a higher deck and hitting him with the final bag of flour. A white powdery giant!
King Neptune's Court

It was then our turn to be brought before the court. The plaintiff was placed into a chair, “cuffs” around their wrists, and a list of the charges read out to them. With every charge a ladleful of slops was poured over the head of the accused and then they had to kneel before the king and queen of the sea and kiss the mackerel tied to the queen’s foot. The Queen had somehow rigged up a bra to squirt a truly revolting brown liquid which was apparently Kahlua and milk and therefore probably the only nice part of the whole thing! Medicine was given (a truly revolting mixture of soy sauce, Tabasco, mustard and lime; try it some time) and the newly inducted shellback was led away to be hosed off!

Hearing the Charges

So what were my charges? Apparently I say absolutely a LOT when I agree with people. And I had unkempt RED hair in the saloon. And I had wound the senior officer up with use of terms like the “blunt and pointy ends”. But my worst charge was being one of the ringleaders in the plan to steal the slops. Immense. I’ve never been a ring-leader before!


Happy now? Absolutely!

(No seafarers were harmed in the making of this post).