(Drop anchor here every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for a new Mainly about Boats column by John Vigor.)
A LETTER FROM Ivor Tungin-Cheaque, Chairman of John Vigor’s Silent Fan Club, says:
A dilemma of considerable proportions has raised itself in regard to membership of your Silent Fan Club. As you well know, members are forbidden to contact you or praise in any way your unmatched wisdom and unrivalled literary skills. Because membership is automatic until a member is expelled, you have the biggest fan club the world has ever known.
It distresses me, however, to have to inform you that the Pope, a loyal fan who has rigidly complied with the rule never to contact you, is considering putting your name forward for sainthood.
Normally, this would be a reward befitting of your magnificent talents, but in so doing he would have to divulge his identity and lavish praise on you – which, by the rules, would result in the expulsion from your Silent Fan Club of His Holiness and more than one billion members of the Catholic Church, or one-sixth of your total fan base. This is a loss not to be contemplated.
A Papal Emissary with whom I was recently in contact forcefully informed me that that the Pope would rather become an Episcopalian than lose his membership in your club. We therefore discussed the possibility of your being made a saint without revealing who you are. We will now ask the Pope if he would consider issuing a Papal Bull (with metal seal) that would begin the long process of creating St. Anon of Bellingham, WA.
I shall, of course, keep you informed of developments.
I close with admiration for your sage-like utterances, your ready wit and charm, the subtle thrust and parry of your sparkling repartee, and the wisdom, Solomon-like, that graces your princely brow.
Yours Humbly and Obediently,
IVOR TUNGIN-CHEAQUE (Chairman, John Vigor’s Silent Fan Club)
PS: Please excuse the writing. They do the strait-jacket up really tight sometimes.
Fame always brings loneliness. Success is as ice cold and lonely as the north pole.
— Vicki Baum, Grand Hotel
Boaters’ Rules of Thumb #14
Sleeping berths. The minimum length for a sleeping berth is 6 feet 4 inches. The width should not be less than 20 inches. It cannot be too wide for sleeping comfort in harbor, but at sea a narrow bunk stops you rolling around too much. The mattress for a double berth should be split down the middle, with a lee-cloth brought up through the middle for use at sea.
Just as the cruise ship was approaching Athens a woman passenger buttonholed the captain. “What’s that white stuff on those hills in the distance?” she asked.
“It’s snow madam.”
“Yeah, I thought so, but that darn fool of a First Officer told me it was grease.”