A one-time school project gone terribly, terribly wrong.

01 November 2008

Archie's Nautical Tale Reminded Me

Of the story of the ship's captain who found he was having difficulty with his sattelite navigation array. It seems the guano from seabirds was clogging up the sensitive antennae.

So the captain, resourceful fellow that he was, hired a young Filipino lad to sit atop the wheelhouse and chuck rocks to frighten away the birds. And all was well for a while.

But gradually the boy grew tired of the monotony of his job, his stone-throwing became listless. Until one day he noticed that one particular bird, an arctic tern, seemed to display more interest in him than the usual crowd.

The boy began sneaking the crusts of his lunchtime sandwiches to his post and feeding them to the bird, which he named "Charlie." He discovered a new vigour in his work, and the captain was well pleased.

Things worked out well for Charlie too, he had his choice of preferred perches, and the best part of the young crewman's lunchtime sangies.

Alas, it could not last. Eventually, Charlie's own guano began fouling the navigation antennae, and the Filipino was told that he must be more dutiful in the performance of his job.

"From now on, you chuck rocks at every feathered creature that alights anywhere near the navigation array," rumbled the captain, "No exceptions--you get that?"

"But sir ..." protested the younger man "... even Charlie?"

"Even Charlie, lad," replied his boss gently, "For the safety of the ship, we must leave no tern unstoned."

Update: Sorry, Archie, I neglected to close the tag. Fixed now

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At 7:30 a.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hehehehe - they're infectious, aren't they - like chickenpox :roll:

At 7:58 a.m., Blogger The Nag said...

I was close to tears for a moment. Good one.

At 12:26 p.m., Blogger Lori said...

Gads. I have to live with this sense of humour.

Makes me cry too.

At 1:29 p.m., Blogger Silverstar said...

It's bad enough going to Archie's, knowing you will be assaulted by bad puns, but to walk in here all unawares and be ambushed....

Well, at least Archie won't be able to use this one for a year.

At 2:15 a.m., Blogger Philipa said...

Awww per-lease :-)
I should have known coming from aerchie :-))

At 11:55 a.m., Blogger Metro said...

I think a better metaphor might be syphilis--they tend to make your nearest and dearest avoid close contact.

@the nag:
No goodish pun goes, indeed.

Be fair--you entered this with every intention of "reforming" me. I well remember what you said at the wedding: "Aisle, altar, hymn."

"A hand on the bird is worth two in ambush," so they tell me; I think.

Around here you're only allowed one tenant per-lease.

At 12:03 p.m., Anonymous g Eagle Esq said...

Errr .... ummmm

Signor Metro - please put on the Kein-Sheila Filter

I rather like your Post - does that make me a Bad Person

Doesn't Her Ladyship ApilihP mean :


At 10:56 a.m., Blogger Metro said...

@G. Eagle, Esq.

I have no idea what you mean. Something about hiring a cat.

Of course you could always hire a tern, they have been known to be available on hire purchase, particularly above the ships' delicate navigational instrumentation. However, cats may be had on reasonable terns.


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