A Mariner’s Tale

I haven’t been wharfside. Nay, not since the storm. The storm done changed things, y’see. Done changed me. I want you t’listen close to my tale, boy. Because what that storm done to me was somethin’ serious. Y’see boy, the storm done made me a gay.

Yes, a gay. A regular ol’ jack o’ the jollies. You may have noticed the way I scampered and skipped down her to greet ya, but I didn’t always walk with this pep in my step. Didn’t always appreciate the way smooth vocal stylings of Bette Midler mingled with the sound of the sea breeze out my window. Didn’t always own the largest collection of Midler LP’s from here to Boothbay Harbor. But I’ll be damned if I’m givin’ that up now.

Before the storm, boy, I had grit. I had a standin’ in this here town. Not a one could hitch a rig faster than yours truly. But after that terrible squall, I became listless and my mind turned to wanderin’, as is the way of us tinsel-ticklin’ patsies. I stopped a-pinin’ for the sea and started a-pinin’ for those fit young shiphands and the boys on the wait staff of the Jolly Roger. The scent of the salty brine brought me no content. I much preferred the delicate aroma of white lavender bath salt, and the way they exfoliate my weather-wearied pores.

Ne’er will I forget thatĀ fateful night. We was out Nova Scotia way when the skies opened up somethin’ fierce. Took the whole crew to pull in the traps as the waves pounded against the hull as one pounds his beloved. Y’ever seen a man swept up by his britches and dragged into the murky depths of the sea? One minute I was wavin’ at Percy to come inside from the bulkhead hatch, the next he was servin’ as Poseidon’s doxie boy, gettin’ sodomized by a trident twenty ways to Tuesday. Bless his soul.

Of the rest of the ordeal, I can’t rightfully say I remember much. What I do recall is me an’ the crew huddlin’ close in the galley. With our clothes in one pile, our shiverin’ bodies in another, we awaited our fate. The restless waters tossed our boat like salad. A bolt of lightnin’ sensually struck the sensitive masthead. A deafenin’ clap of thunder stood our fleshly bones on end. The ship leaned portside, and all o’ the sudden I was swimmin’ in the murky depths of another man.

Well, sonny, ‘at is my tale. ‘Tis been a blessin’ and a curse, bein’ a bum-buggerin’ ninny and all. A curse in that it done took away my livelihood. My friends and family done deserted me and I’ve got no one left. A blessin’ in that I no longer have to worry about the Freudian implications of heartily suckin’ on this here pipe all day. And I can be proud to call myself a seaman. No use bein’ a homophonephobe.

D’ya get it, boy? Homophonephobe. Y’can have that one.