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Old 08-30-2016, 12:04 PM   #176
IslandGuy
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

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Good luck. Myself and a lot of others are pulling for you.
Thanks! That really means a lot.

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GL man. I think it is a good decision to get rid of a car. You really don't need one to get around. It is healthier without. I mean in a city you won't get as much exercise as on a lobster boat. And on top it is better for the environment.

I don't think that you will make it as a poker-pro. But I think it is also not about it. It is about struggling and not giving-up and looking for ways to make things work. Very inspirational.
Well I haven't gotten any exercise on a lobster boat since December! I think getting rid of my car really is a good decision though and I am looking forward to the exercise. I respect that you don't think I will make it as a poker pro, and I may not. I will give it everything I have though and if I fail I will try and try again until I either succeed or find something else in life to put my focus into. It's not like I am trying to make a ton of money grinding or looking for the baller poker dream. I just want to be able to get by.

Thanks for following everyone!
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Old 09-03-2016, 10:05 PM   #177
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

So things have been great so far here in Bangor. The live grind has been going well and I have been really focused and disciplined with my online game and review time. I'm getting to know my roommates and they are both pretty chill. One of them took a little while for her to warm up to me.

Today I was having a decent session at the casino and I heard there was a Blink 182 show going on later just down the road. I thought that would be awesome but I knew they were sold out. Later, near the end of my session, I stepped outside to smoke a cigarette and there was a group of girls walking by yelling blink 182. I laughed and said hi, then immediately they said "we have an extra ticket!"
I talked her down to $50, even though it was a $40 ticket. I figured it was just too much of a coincidence for this to happen, I love music, I love Blink, and here was a ticket. A Bovada payment that I have been waiting on for 5 months finally came through yesterday so I thought I would treat myself.

Then I get to the show on my mountain bike. I lock it up, and as I am walking in I see the bag policy. My super tiny backpack that is no bigger than a purse, isn't allowed in. I considered stashing it in the bushes or something. I mean, it's only my tablet, my phone that doesn't have service, and a notebook full of the tendencies of regs who play at Hollywood Bangor. I guess it's a pretty cool little bag though. I looked around and there were homeless people ****ing everywhere. I fought with myself for a while.

I took last night off from grinding online to have some fun and I think that was the influencer in my decision. I decided I should get in a good night of grinding online so I decided to try to sell my ticket. After 15 minutes or so I was ready to give up. The show had already started and I knew I wouldn't be able to sell it. There was a young girl sitting on a rock outside the gate, by herself, listening to the music. I asked her if she wanted to buy a ticket and she said she didn't have any cash. I decided to just give her the ticket. I guess I'm a sucker but it felt nice.

Now I sit here in my apartment about to start my Saturday night grind, and I can hear Blink 182 through my window loud and clear from a mile away. They are playing Damnit right now and it sounds great.
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Old 09-07-2016, 10:10 PM   #178
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

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Old 09-15-2016, 08:26 PM   #179
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

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Old 09-21-2016, 10:49 PM   #180
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

So things have been going alright for me up here in Bangor. I've been pretty much doing 4 hours at the casino, then 4 hours online every day. I have been logging my study/review time so that I can set goals to help motivate myself.

So there, that's the poker stuff. Now it's story time!

The Mutiny

I was working on an off-shore lobster boat out of Point Judith, Rhode Island. I would make the 5 hour drive to go out to sea for 5 days. The captain was a real ******* and he always screamed at everyone, except me. He really like me. That's why it was kind of a bummer when he said he was selling the boat.

He brought someone along one trip. He just said he was a friend of the captain and I didn't ask any more questions. I was the first mate on the boat and throughout the whole trip I would explain what we were doing and answered any questions that he had. His name was John.

When we got back to the dock the captain and John broke the news that John would be buying the boat. He laid out his plan for us. We would leave from point Judith and move all of our lobster traps from the southern most part of the Gulf of Maine, just on the edge of the continental shelf, to about 150 miles north on the northern most part of Jordan Basin. We could fit 5 trawls on the boat reasonably (40 traps per trawl) and we had to move about 1600 traps. The ride to the fishing grounds was about 10 hours, and then it would take us about 30-35 hours to steam north with a full load of gear.

I knew it was quite an undertaking, especially with a new captain/owner. I almost just packed my things up and moved to another boat, but I saw opportunity here. John told me that he needed someone who knew what they were doing and who knew the boat. He used to own a swordfishing boat out of Honolulu, Hawaii but his lobstering experience was minimal. He had a very mellow, kind manner about him. He smiled when he spoke to me and would listen when I spoke. If he seemed like a jerk I probably would have left right then. I decided to stick around. That was Oct.15th. The boat didn't leave the harbor for almost 2 months...

There were some issues with the insurance company and John couldn't take the boat until they got straightened out. When things were finally taken care of, Winter was upon us. When the weather changes in the fall, it gets really nasty out on the water. An average day 80 miles off-shore in the Gulf of Maine usually entails 10-15 foot seas and a wind that gets in your bones.

We did what we had to do though. John was obviously inexperienced and he constantly was asking me what we should do in most situations. It was more responsibility than I was used to, but I liked it. After just a few trips, John had a sit down with me. He told me that his intention was to get these traps moved north and to get things how he wanted them, then he would have me captain the boat while he stayed on the mainland. It was my dream right there in front of me. I was going to be the captain of a steel 70 foot off-shore lobster boat. Everything I had been working so hard for, it was right there!

It took us all winter to move the gear. We would be stuck on land for at least a week at a time and when we did make it out the weather was so bad that it made things take longer than we wanted. We went through crew left and right. Every trip we would have at least 1 new guy, if not a whole new crew. We weren't making any money because the lobsters had left the area where we were picking up gear. John would give everyone a check for $300 or so just to try to keep people around, but not many people made a second or third trip. By the end of the Winter we were taking any random dude from the bar because nobody wanted to do what we were doing in the weather we were doing it in for less money than they would make at McDonalds.

The fact that I am alive today to tell this story is a miracle. That Winter we were trying to do things that the vessel just wasn't capable of doing. There are dozens of times that I jumped out of a ball of rope just in time to not get hauled overboard. Countless nights at the wheel riding up to the crest of a 20 foot wave to see a mountain range of white sea, all while overloading the boat with traps. One night we were steaming and we had a guy on wheel watch and he didn't notice that we were taking on water through the fish hold hatch on deck. John woke up because the boat was riding at a really sharp angle and just in time he noticed that the engine room was filling with water. Another 5 minutes and the engine would be submerged and we would be dead in the water. Needless to say that guy got fired.

Then it was March. The weather was starting to calm down. The sun started shining and the wind would take some days off. The only problem, John couldn't find any lobsters! We would haul traps for 20 hours a day and only catch the equivalent of $500 worth of lobsters. We weren't even catching enough to cover expenses.

This went on for another month or 2 and we had managed to keep the same crew for a couple trips, promising big money when we finally got onto some lobsters. I was losing all faith in John but I did my best not to let it show. I knew that once I was captain I would get the gear on some lobsters. I knew the tricks. I have spent countless hours picking the brains of my uncle's and other lobster captains that I respect. I knew what the lobsters were doing this time of year, but John had his own plan of attack and I respected it.

Then John had a breakdown. We left for a trip that was only supposed to be 5 days. We had been out there for 9 days when he snapped. He came out on deck and started yelling at all of us. He was yelling about anything he could think of. Screaming because there was an empty soda can in the corner, yelling at the other guys because they didn't show him enough respect, and singling me out saying that I wasn't worth my salt and that I would never run this boat.

We had a 30 minute steam until we got to the next set of trawls when we would put in another 8-10 hour stretch of hauling. I told the guys to go down into the forecastle and make us some peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and that I would be right down. We didn't have enough food for the trip because we only expected to be 5 days, so we were scrounging the last of what was in the cupboards, and PB&J on moldy bread was all we had.

When I was finishing up on deck I was steaming. I had put everything I had into this boat over the past winter. I had put my life in danger countless times. I worked the deck by myself for 10 hours one trip because the 2 guys we brought with us quit in the middle of hauling. Now this guy is going to fire me when we get in and I'm not going to run the boat? Alright I've had it.

So when I go down into the galley I have a talk with the guys. They have been all done for days now and the only reason they have continued to put effort in is because they respect me and they were following my lead. I asked them, "Are you guys ready for plan B?" and they were all about it. I told them to go up on deck and rinse down the boat and clean up the deck like we do when we are done with a trip.

John came out on deck and wanted to know what was going on.
"We're all done John, you've lost our respect and lost a crew, now turn this boat towards home." I said

"What? We aren't done with the trip, you had better watch your attitude!" but I could hear fear in his voice.

"Ok, John. Let me put it to you this way. You can either go into the wheelhouse and point us towards home, or we are going to tie you up and I will point us towards home." I told him

He stared at me open mouthed for a good 5 seconds. "You guys wouldn't" then the other two put down what they were doing and walked up behind me.

"**** you John, we're all done" Eddy said

"No! We are staying out here until I say it's time to go in! If I have to stand out on deck and haul trawls myself I will!" He said defensively.

Then I told him, "Don't make us hurt you John. Look at my face, do you really want to try me?"

"Ok,Ok, fine. I have a wife and a kid, don't do anything crazy. I will take us in." and he walked into the wheelhouse and turned the boat around, all the while yelling that he was going to have us arrested.

When we got to the dock John was the first one off the boat. He went straight to his car and drove off. I never saw him again and hopefully I never will. Sometimes I wonder if he ever got things straightened out or if he just ended up selling the boat.

I hope you guys enjoyed that one!
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Old 09-21-2016, 11:34 PM   #181
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

How much did you get paid for your final excursion?
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Old 09-22-2016, 06:31 AM   #182
Mike Haven
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

http://docs.unbound.co.uk//unbound-for-creators
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Old 09-22-2016, 11:22 PM   #183
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

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How much did you get paid for your final excursion?
On the way in I told him that if he gave us each $300 that nothing bad would happen to him. I explained that he had a lot to lose and that I had pretty much nothing to live for.

He called my bluff and we all walked away with nothing that trip.

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That's very flattering. I think once I complete the poker chapter I might have enough material.
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Old 10-04-2016, 11:22 AM   #184
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

I just read through all of this, what an interesting story.
Mike Haven is right, A great book in the making.
GL going forward
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Old 12-30-2016, 07:52 PM   #185
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

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Old 12-30-2016, 11:27 PM   #186
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

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Mmmmooooaaaaaaarrrrrrr

As a quick update I saw/worked/grinded/hung out with him for a bit. Had him sit at my table of variance for a couple nights.

He's alive and doing well
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Old 02-24-2018, 10:06 PM   #187
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Re: My Life as an Island Hermit

Still alive and doing well?

Still on the island?
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