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Gus Openshaw's Whale-Killing Journal

I Got A Fish To Kill


June 11
Don't make me relive the details just now. The short of it: a whale ate my wife, kid and right arm. And he got away. For the time being.

Now, there are these Indians in the state of Washington. They have one of those licenses you can get--because of a special religious dispensation or whatever--to kill one whale a year. For probation agreement reasons that I can't get into, I had to get myself one of these licenses before I could go back out on the water--let alone set a toe on a dock--without getting shot at by the damn Coast Guard. So I went up to Washington to pow-wow with those Indians.

Prior to the incident, I worked on the line at a cat food cannery. Literally the worst stinking job you can get. Point is, I was earning just north of squat. But I'd married way better than I deserved. And when she died, I was worth--including everything from the house to my boxer shorts--$515,200. Oddly, the Indian Chief priced the license at $515,000, take it or leave it. I took it, gladly. I later learned that my lawyer had "coincidentally" done some "legal work" for the same Indians that same day, getting him a check $51,500. But I was too busy readying my boat to care about the lawyer. My thoughts were on getting to the neck of the Caribbean where a particularly fat sperm whale had been sighted.

I bought an old wooden cabin cruiser from a geezer in Port Helslop, Washington for $20. Wood boats are a bitch is why. Takes a good couple hundred hours to scrape and paint the hulls every year. Invention of fiberglass made wood boats' asses obsolete. So folks with wood boats they don't use no more are left with this dilemma: "Do I keep paying two grand a year to keep this sucker in dry dock, or do I pay some guy twice that much to come over, chain saw my family heirloom apart and haul it to the dump?" So the price for these craft is zip. The twenty bucks was for the gas in her. And it was a good fifty bucks worth of gas.

A few days later, a few leagues north of the Equator, I upgraded to a 180-foot superyacht that came with this computer I'm blogging on now. I'll get to that next time I blog. Now I got to hit the head.


Posted by Gus Openshaw at 12:01 AM MNT
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