Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Grumpy Summer Vacation, Day 7

At sea again.

At breakfast the table near us was occupied by a guy in his 70's and large extended family. After a few minutes he suddenly launched into a loud lecture to his family members (and unfortunate nearby diners) on methods he was using to improve his "spincter" control. He didn't clarify which of his bodily "spincters" he was referring to, leaving such sordid details to our imaginations. His family seemed to take this in stride.

1st point: I really don’t care about your "spincter" or how tight it is, or how much it's been leaking recently, or what you do to keep it tight.

2nd point: It's called a "SPHINCTER" you illiterate dipshit.

Due to an unscheduled Category 1 hurricane, we were informed today that the ship would be skipping Puerto Vallarta and later going to Ensenada instead. I don't see this as a big deal, but the torch & pitchfork mob outside the purser's office sure did. It was so much fun listening to them that I got a front row seat in the lobby and ordered endless Diet Cokes. You heard things like:

"So what if it's a hurricane! I want to go fishing!"

"I knew a guy who survived Katrina, and the boat he done lived on was smaller than this."

"Can't you just drop me off to go shopping, and bring the ship back later?"

“Why can’t you just have the hurricane go somewhere else?”

“What causes hurricanes? Are they different from earthquakes?”

While Mrs. Grumpy took a nap, I went to the pool on the aft deck. I got a Diet Coke and jumped in the hot tub, enjoying a soak while 2 pimply adolescent guys argued about movies on the other side of the tub. After a few minutes a collection of blond teenage titwillows jumped in the hot tub with us (the kind who never gave me the time of day in high school, and now call on my office as drug reps).

They paid no attention to the middle-aged doctor and 2 pimply guys, just discussed where they were going to go shopping in Cabo San Lucas. When I looked over at the zit brothers I noticed that both were transfixed on the titwillows and (more alarmingly) their hands were underwater and out of sight. So I jumped out of the tub before a sticky situation developed.

Why on Earth does the ship’s TV show Cartoon Network, with the shows in English and the ads in Spanish? And why are the commercials so damn funny when you can’t understand a word of them?

At lunch I went for some fries. That station was empty, but the line for burgers was full. So I just walked ahead of the burger line to get some fries, only to have a 3-toothed hag kick me in the shin, throw a grape, and loudly accuse me of cutting in front of her. I told her that the ship’s dentist was on deck 1, and got my fries.

After lunch Frank wanted to go golfing. Playing miniature golf is an odd sensation when you're doing it 11 stories above the ocean, on a moving platform. If the ship rolls it can really screw up a shot in a high-stakes game of minigolf. As a result I owe Frank a nickel.

I want to know who picks what they show on the Jumbotron poolside screen? Sometimes it's entertaining, like “Night at the Museum”or “Star Wars”. Today, however, it was "Tom Jones! Live! In Vegas!" It looked like it was filmed in the late 60's, early 70's. I was hoping some inebriated babe would toss her room key up at the screen, but no such luck.

At around 5:00 the captain made an announcement. These start with a few chimes and then "Ladies and Gentlemen, Captain Speaking” (as far as I can tell Captain Speaking has commanded every ship I've ever been on). Unfortunately, the rest of the message is usually garbled. I've never understood this. These companies spend billions to build monster ships, but have the PA systems made by the company that does the inaudible drive-thru's at McD's. So the rest of the announcement sounds like he's either repeating an order for cheeseburgers, fries, and a shake, or that he's telling you the ship is sinking.

After he was done gargling into the intercom I flagged down a passing ship’s officer (I think his name was Mahjong, I swear) and asked him what the captain said. Mahjong smiled and told me "It concerned the ship, sir" and walked off. Thanks, Officer Mahjong, I feel much better now.

At the dinner buffet tonight I was in line behind a lady who asked if the seafood enchiladas contained seafood. WTF?

We’ve noticed an interesting phenomenon on this cruise. Disappearing food. Marie will ask if she can try your soup or something. You give her a taste. And she politely says thank you. Then you look away for a minute, and when you return to your meal your bowl of soup or whatever is gone. It's now on Marie’s plate. And she gives you this look of surprise, as if the ship's roll had shifted it there.


Carrie said...

I've been reading your blog for a few months now and just wanted to say that I really enjoy it. Not only because you have a great and entertaining writing style, but that as a psychology graduate student, I'm interested in related topics (though I'm not going into Neurology, I'll leave that to you smart folks). Mostly it is because you make me feel much better about my Diet Coke addiction. I think I could give you a run for your money on consumption! I don't drink coffee or energy drinks, but I have had people say they didn't recognize me without a can of the 'Nectar of the Gods' in my hand.
Enjoy the rest of the cruise, and good luck with the hurricane!

Grumpy, M.D. said...

Thank you, Carrie!

Mrs. Grumpy calls Diet Coke the same thing.

moppie said...

What would happen if you were served regular Coke?

Grumpy, M.D. said...

Life would go on, but I'd have a better chance of fitting into that size 74XXX bathing suit.

Caffeine is the key.

Carrie said...

As strange as it may seem, I actually prefer the taste of Diet Coke. I don't like regular Coca-Cola. And anyway, based on some of the studies I've seen, the literature has found that diet sodas contain more caffeine than regular sodas.

Grumpy, M.D. said...

Agree. Caffeine is king, and I like the taste.

Dr. House has his Vicodin and I have my Diet Coke.

It sets my caffeine-abusing migraine patients at ease, as they can see evidence of my own addiction (open can and discarded smashed ones) all over my desk.

knitalot3 said...

Thank you so much for sharing your vacation with us. I don't care what it cost or how you paid for it. I do hope you go again soon. I really enjoyed it. It was just like being there, only better..... because I wasn't. Haha. I can't wait to hear how your patients got along without you. Keep blogging, frequently.

WWWebb said...

I think that while everybody HAS sphincters, a subset ARE sphincters.

Anonymous said...

Captain Speaking was probably saying "a sphincter says what?". Party on, Dr.Grumpy!

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