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Pop-Psy on the Water
b
y Barb Hansen
August  2006

Being an amateur psychologist, I like to analyze people by the boat names they choose. Every boat name is like a mini-psychological profile of the vessel owner.

I won’t waste your time on boats like She Got the House and She Whines a lot. They’re just too easy. Dittos for Sin or Swim, Swimsuits Optional and Nauti Couples.

Somewhere in Alabama there’s a boat called Auburnsux. I don’t ever want to meet the owner of that boat, so I won’t risk angering him (or her?) with my non-professional psycho workup.

Because they are confronting their demons, the owners of Sir Rosis of the River, Zoloft and Xanax get a pass today. And I won’t take the bait and analyze the owner of Analyse This.

The owner of Singood the Sailbad has some issues. He (or she?) needs counseling for poor sailing, that’s for sure, and maybe for good sinning, too. Or is it good singing? We’ve got a split personality here, folks.

I have to get this off my chest. You’ve seen boats named Hell Froze Over?  I imagine that here we’ve got an older male individual. He was married for some years. His wife was always just dead set against him owning a boat and he sulked about that. Then something really drastic happened. I’m not saying foul play was involved but something tells me his spouse is no longer in the picture.

Anyway, I recently had a chance to take a look and reflect on the annual top ten list of the most popular boat names from Boat U.S. The winners for 2005 were, from the top, Seas the Day, Aquaholic, Island Time, Dragonfly, Pura Vida, Encore, Black Pearl, Destiny, Serenity Now and License to Chill.

Seas the Day was up from number seven in 2004. I don’t know about you but I’m picturing a preppy kind of skipper tucked between two masts. This fellow used to wear a captain’s hat and a blue blazer with lots of gold buttons and always-too-clean Top Siders. Nowadays, in a more casual world, he wears a ribbed, linen crew-neck pullover, a pair of $200 hand-sewn navy blue boat shoes, a Blackberry, and a pencil-thin mustache that he trims approximately hourly.

I picture the owner of Aquaholic as a Houston pork bellies baron. Billy Bob’s up there on the bridge of his 52-foot sportfisherman overseeing a lighted panel of information –- GPS interfaced with radar and sonar, real-time satellite images of loop currents and water temps, a 52-inch flat screen TV with satellite reception. He has a Stella Artois in his left hand and a wireless remote control in his right to control the Bose sound system which plays either Emmy Lou Harris or George Jones. The autopilot takes care of the steering but he rests a foot on the wheel anyway just for a sense of control. The other foot is for goosing throttles.

I have to say I puzzled over the profile of the owners of Black Pearl. That’s a new one on the list. I thought, “Oh, this is your financially-secure skipper with inherited wealth and a high-fashion trophy wife. But then somebody pointed out that the hit movies in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” series are all about a fictional pirate galleon called the Black Pearl. Oh my, this changes everything.

Vic’s opinion is the owner of Black Pearl is, in fact, a lawyer who files class action lawsuits during the week. But I think Black Pearl’s skipper plays strictly by the rules Monday through Friday, goes to church every Sunday, and turns into a pretend-to-be swashbuckler only on certain Saturdays.

This is all in fun. The new top ten names suggest to me that in real life these owners are all solid, taxpaying citizens who just like to escape the world’s madness once in a while and who can fault them for that?

Naut me. Sea ya.
 

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