You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘blogging’ category.
Note: This morning I noticed that wordpress has automatically added a captioning space below each photo, so I’ve decided to use it. What unifies this set of photos is the fact that it shows three of the most powerful NYC-based tugs that primarily assist powered vessels into and out of the port.
I think the last time I used a photo of Amy C McAllister was here, actually not that long ago. Here’s a comparison of the three boats featured here by horsepower.
Eric McAllister–5150, Laura K–5100, and Robert E–4000. I suspect the sixth boro will be seeing a new Moran vessel with 6000 horsepower by mid-summer.
Let me know what you think of the use of captions.
All photos by Will Van Dorp.
I know some folks refuse to spend time with Facebook. I entered there in 2008 after figuring out it was the only way to communicate and exchange photos with some people. Now I’ve joined 14 groups there . . and checking in has become similar to dropping by the breakroom at a job.
Saturday night I saw this photo. Actually it’s only a detail of a bigger photo. Any ideas what it is?
Here’s the entire shot, an assemblage of mostly tugboats attached to a circular base where a crane is mounted. Two landing craft travel from left to right and what looks like a few miles distant there’s a beach with mountains not far behind.
The photo was put up on Saturday afternoon. Notice the initial comment by Kees (pronounced “case” ) van der Ende. Of course, I needed to respond as I did. What amazed me was the thread that followed in less than an hour!
Less than 24 hours later, the tugs as well as the project had been identified through a textbook case of “group sourcing.” I love it. Click here for more on Aegean Pelagos. Click here for some Zouros tugs. Click here for Arctic Kalvik, although I wonder why such an icebreaker would be in the Med.
Once Kees had expressed interest in being the CEO, another 20+ posts followed on the topic of logos and such.
Click here for a photo of the completed bridge as well as points along the way to completion.
By the way . . . pay a moment or two tribute to Mardi Gras today, even if NYC and the sixth boro is as cold as . . . . You decide how to finish it in some original way . . . not borrowed from J. D. Salinger. Here was my first mardi gras post from five years ago!
You know the colors and organization, but can you name the vessel? And as to the organization, do you know all the foreign countries where they operate? I didn’t.
The vessel is USACE dredge Yaquina, here at the entrance to its namesake river.
Michael’s searched tirelessly for this dredge ever since last October, when I posted these fotos of McFarland. That post also generated this impressive list of USACE vessels from the esteemed Harold Tartell . . . a veritable encyclopedia of USACE newbuilds from 1855 until 2012 . . . including the 1981 Yaquina.
Previously, the latest dredge in a distant location I’ve been looking at was Xin Hai Liu, in Rio.
For these fotos, many thanks to Michael and Jamie.
Captain Charles . . 1953. Know the location? The bridge in the background is a clue. Answer can be found at the end of this post.
James Turecamo, like me class of 1969, foto taken just before yesterday’s planned building implosion. By that early hour, James had already earned a fair amount of “keep.” To see James in Turecamo livery, click here.
Hunter is something different! She’s just towed in a dead fishing boat. How much would a RIB like this cost new?
Catherine and Kimberly, both Turecamo, escorted Tonna up the Arthur Kill, past the scrapyard where Gary Kane and I filmed the documentary.
Jennie B, 1955, in the mighty Columbia.
Captain Bob, August 1945 Marietta Manufacturing Point Pleasant WV hull #538, is a one year younger sibling LT of Bloxom (June 1944 and hull # 519)! Also, in this run was Mary E. Hannah and James A. Hannah, posted here on tugster in 2012. To get a sense what Captain Bob (ex-Sea Commander) looks like high and dry–and by extension what Bloxom of Graves of Arthur Kill once did–click here. On the vessel below, I love the green “door.”
Linda L. Miller, eastbound of the East River. Linda L. and Gabby Miller assisted in loading Mighty Servant a year and a half ago.
Coastline Bay Star, once known as Coney Island, dates from 1958.
Longsplice (originally Shrike, 1959) recently high and dry near the Arthur Kill.
And this vessel, on the left bank of the Willamette, I’ve no idea. Anyone help?
All fotos taken in the past month by Will Van Dorp.
Very related: I’m looking for someone (or some group of people) to take over guest editor position of this blog for about a month this summer. Compensation is a fortune of sixth boro shellbacks as well as fame; you could become a paladin of the port. You really can be geographically any watery place. And you have to adhere to a disciplined foto-driven/sparse verbiage mix of workboats, history, eccentricity, and apolitical wit. Of course, you can add to that a smattering of your own favorite sprinklings.
Hmmm . . . does that describe tugster? Feel free to add to a characterization of the blog. But seriously, I need to step away for a while this summer . . . to gallivant, of course. Get in touch for details. Learning the blogging template is not difficult.
According to the calculations on my rusty cruncher . . .
this number has passed in the wee and dark and windy hours of Boxing Day.
A million . . . graphic ways of representing this would be . . . it would take 158 trips of Queen Sapphire, currently in the sixth boro, to deliver that many BMWs. Or the hold of a half-filled Bebedouro would contain enough Brazilian pulp for that much orange juice.
Wikipedia offers some other ways to represent a million.
Meanwhile, this is my next goal.
Here’s the proof.
I’m humbled and grateful. Thanks for reading, sharing, and commenting. And thanks for the emails and private messages. The green coming out of the rusty cruncher above is getting to know so many of you. Thanks and more thanks. I never dreamed this was possible when I started the blog just after Thanksgiving 2006.
Meanwhile, I’ll be in the wooded upland between the Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico til after New Years’ begin.
It is a race, and that means there’s a winner, but the race committee decided to have both the first place (left, Lincoln Sea . . . 8000 hp) and second place (right, Meagan Ann . . . 2200 hp)) finishers raise the cup this year because of Meagan Ann‘s lightning speed that allowed her to beat at least four boats of equal or great horsepower. Is her hull coated with slippery paint?
Someone remarked that the Kirby livery makes this originally blue vessel seem larger than previous paint jobs.
This blue vessel built originally for Alaska is
speedy. She left us in the dust . . . er . . . froth!
Final shot of Lincoln Sea (for now) and
us as we appeared from her upper wheelhouse.
All fotos by Will Van Dorp, except the last one by Dave Boone. Thanks, Dave. You caught me waving . . . green deck forward of the wheelhouse.
Related: last week I got this email from D. J. Lake, who gave me permission to reprint it:
“I am contacting you with regard to the pictures of the first tug boat race in the New York harbor in the early ’50’s that you posted recently. My uncle, Vincent Lake, a long-time employee of the M & J Tracy Towing Line, was a captain on the William J. Tracy on the day of the race. As you probably know, the William J. Tracy was one of four new tugs acquired at that time by Tracy Towing, including her sisters, Kathleen Tracy, Thomas Tracy and Helen Tracy (all named for members of the Tracy family). These tugs were replacements for older units in the fleet. My Uncle Vincent always talked about this race and what an honor it was to be involved in it. I am glad the races have been given a new beginning. The races give the public an opportunity to see tugs in action in the harbor. Thank you. D.J. Lake”
D. J. . . . thanks for sharing that bit of history with us.
For a short video on this coming weekend’s Waterford Tug Roundup, see “now published author” Rick Old Salt’s blog here.
Inspiration for this post found me when I was looking at the WordPress homepage about a month ago and noticed a blogpost by a woman called Celine. She called it the “30 before 30 project.” At some point before she made a list of 30 things she wished to have done before she turned 30.
Tomorrow is my 21,900th morning on this earth, i.e., I turn 60! It’s stunning, traumatizing, but I have to get over it. When I was under 30, the way I imagined 60 is quite different from how it feels to me, but that’s another story.
I decided that what distinguishes the 60 mark from the 30 is that rather than looking forward to things yet to do, I feel drawn to reflect on what I’ve gotten from the 21,900 days behind me. So here’s my list of six lessons:
1. Ask. Cultivate curiosity. How could anyone look at this scene and not wonder what it is? Curiosity supports youthfulness, no matter your mileage or years.
vessels named Ever Diadem passing scows named Mighty Quinn, so be it. I know I’ve NOT done anything to hallucinate, so maybe in time I will understand. In fact, as I took fotos of Ever Diadem, clear as could be I heard the bow watch crewman shout out “Foto!” so I took one, will put it on the web, and whoever he is, he may or may not some day stumble upon it.
3. Act. Pulverize procrastination. But realize that running in competition with procrastination is triage. Some things will not get done first . . . might never get done at all, and those priorities could be fine. But act on what you want and need. Fred Trooster took this foto in Hellevoetsluis, downstream from the port of Rotterdam, last spring. Bedankt, Fred.
4. Smile. Whoop and overwhelm weltschmerz. I have my sources for smiles, and I go there when I need them to survive. It sounds silly maybe, but I’m as committed to balance in humor as in diet, work . . . .
5. Give. Give yourself, your humor, your urgency. Overwhelm some random person with your cheer. And although it’s not the motivation, whatever you give comes back many fold and in unexpected ways. Account ledgers, though important, tell only half-truths.
6. Relax. When I was under 30, I confused sleep with wasted moments. Relaxation allows wisdom to seep in. Here near the headwaters of the Hudson aka Muh-he-kun-ne-tuk, a few minutes of nestled into the sandy bank rearrange priorities and expel dark humors.
The feline below left, less than six months old, gallops around the house more pony than cat. But it sleeps up to 18 hours a day. So does the 30-year-old parrot. Relaxation, re-energizing, a rovering spirit remain as much the prerogative of the over-60 as the under-30. Gallivanting becomes the parrot as well as the cat, although each does it differently.
So, where do I go from here? Tomorrow, my actual 21,900th day I don’t post. I work a 12-hour day at the bread/butter job. But in the breaks, I think of post-60 gallivants. Here are six that occur to me immediately.
1. the Panama Canal. It’d be just like sitting along the KVK, and I’d even see some of the sixth boro regulars, I’d bet.
2. the Erie Canal. I’ve motored it, but I have a 10-foot Hunter Liberty that I’d love to sail from Lyons to the sixth boro.
3. a freighter cruise. I’ve never been interested in big cruise ships. In my early 30s,I took a thrilling 60-hour ferry from Jedda to Port Suez.
4. the Amazon, and while in Brasil, I might stop in at Bebedouro. Maybe the freighter cruise could be up to Port Newark with holds full of orange juice.
5. the Mississippi, at least from St. Louis to the Gulf.
6. the Rhine/Rhone Canals from the North Sea to the Med.
So much for a list. Tomorrow some of these might differ. So what . . .
Here are some more lists . . mostly young people.
I’d planned something different for today, but then my inbox started to fill. And it makes me happy to feel a community building here. So . . . thanks all for reading and sending fotos and links. I wanted to go out taking fotos, but a pile of tasks told me to stay home.
First, Ann O’Nymous sent me a link to Tugboat Tales, a fabulous documentary made by the late Bart Lawson back in 1991. This first-rate documentary is divided into parts one, two, and three. A click gets you to youtube.
Next, harbor photographer extraordinaire John Watson went to check progress on Ambrose, and discovered the drydock had been floated out and reoriented 180 degrees, with the lightship on board. That would have been a sight to behold.
Next, from Allen Baker, this foto of a lightship undergoing restoration two hundred miles . . . downeast . . . well, in Boston. It’s LV-112, which last appeared in this blog almost two years ago. That info back in 2010 was passed along by Matt of Soundbounder. Check this link (Thanks to Rick) for many more fotos of LV-112.
As I said, I stayed inside this morning, chomping at the bit because Orange Star was headed out. Had I realized that her sister vessel was coming in and that they’d cross not far from the Narrows, I would have “busted out.” Nothing could have kept me inside. Then, I got an email from bowsprite informing me that Orange
Babe Wave had come into port, and I was beside myself. At which point . . . .
I got an email from John Skelson, with attached fotos of Orange Wave!!! If you’re new to this blog, I’m a self-professed orangejuiceaholic. Here, thanks to A. Steven Toby is a link to the technology of these juice ships.
And since this post has become a gallery of other people’s fotos, here’s another from Allen Baker. A little self-disclosure here: I moved to the Boston area in the mid-1980s. One day in 1986, I was walking near the Science Museum and saw two very tired tugboats there, Luna and Venus. The sad sight drew me in. To see these beauties in such an utter state of disintegration broke my heart. I thought both were doomed. Venus was clawed into matchsticks in 1995, and Luna very narrowly escaped the same fate. Read the much nuanced story here. Luna dates from 1930, the same year as W. O. Decker. I hope to see Luna again soon; too bad I didn’t carry a camera around back in 1986.
And Decker brings the post to South Street Seaport, which I’m thrilled isexperiencing early springtime, frigid temperatures notwithstanding. Also, if you’ve been in NYC recently, you know it’s been a snowless winter so far; this foto was taken last year. I’ve always know the vessel below as Helen McAllister, but now I’m embarrassed to note that she’s also the ex-Admiral Dewey and Georgetown. I’d never realized that. Further, she came off the ways into the KVK in 1900, built at the same yard that produced Kristin Poling! And this raises two questions: is Helen McAllister that last power vessel of that yard still extant? And, does anyone know of fotos of Helen McAllister that show her working during OpSail 1992. Which raises the question . . . am I the only one NOT hearing talk of planning for OpSail 2012 New York?
Both Ambrose and Admiral Dewey/Georgetown/Helen McAllister are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
It’s cold outside and tomorrow should be colder, so you could click on every link above and drink some hot tea. Did I complete many of my tasks today? No, but I had a ball with these fotos. Watching all three parts of Tug Tales will take about a half hour, but it is well worth the time.
Thanks to Ann, John, Allen, bowsprite, Steven, and John for fotos and info.