You are currently browsing the daily archive for December 7, 2008.

In Moby Dick, Chapter 36  aka “The Quarter Deck” depicts a muster aboard Pequod in which the captain calls the crew to dedicate themselves to a project.  If it were possible to factor the melodrama out of Ahab, you’d have a lesser novel but a better leader, one who creates a shared vision.  Mary Whalen‘s  70th party helped forge a clear vision.

The  foto below shows a serene tanker reflecting on her past and future and the communities peopling both.  Communities already lived within her and those yet to come converge in what becomes more than cold steel.


By land,  people came, as well as


by muscle-powered craft, and


by diesel.  Shown below are Pegasus (1907)  and Janice Ann Reinauer (1967).


Just as the muster aboard Pequod pulled together a global array of mariners, so the Whalen party brought together young and old folk, students, retirees, artists, seafarers and their families, business people, politicians and policy makers,  as well as fans from all walks of life.  That’s what moved me:  Mary A. Whalen on her birthday party got attention and gave the gift of community to all who came.

And to all the readers of this blog who I met either for the first time or for the n’th time yesterday, it was a great place to see each other.

Speaking of blogs, bowsprite is now ready top share her blog with the known universe:  check it here.  Her most recent post shows the poster she created on the event of the Whalen birthday.  Help me welcome bowsprite–with her own take on the sixth boro–to the BlogSea.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

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Documentary "Graves of Arthur Kill" is AVAILABLE again here.Click here to buy now!

Seth Tane American Painting

Read my Iraq Hostage memoir online.

My Babylonian Captivity

Reflections of an American hostage in Iraq, 20 years later.


December 2008