It seems that the summer has finally arrived, because like the purple martins coming back to … where is it? Ah yes, Cucamonga. Yes, like them with their regularity, Tom has invited the entire office to a boat outing for Memorial Day. I was used to spending the time around Memorial Day being forced to watch tanks roll up and down our town square, so this offered an interesting change.
As you may recall, the last boat outing ended very badly. I will not shame our distinguished leader by recounting it in detail, but suffice it to say that Tom insisted we all come out for a trip around the lake, a bit of awkward and unavoidable social time together, and an opportunity to expose our skin to destructive, carcinogenic radiation. Regardless I wished to make Tom’s invitation successful, so I arrived on time only to find I was the only one to have accepted. We shared a brief shameful moment at the realization.
Tom, ever the consummate host, nevertheless insisted we sail around the lake a bit. As we set out, Tom piloted the boat clumsily, yet pulled us out into the main flow of traffic after fewer than seventeen attempts. As we puttered about the large lake, there were very, very many others who were also inexperienced and likely intoxicated. I silently hoped that Tom would steer clear of them.
Unfortunately, we drew within a few feet of another boat whose occupants were all dressed like seamen. Oh, pirates, yes. Suddely as we passed by they threw a grappling hook, which caught on the front handrail. The burly seamen began to reel us in. Tom attempted to steer us away, but they were already aboard.
“Dude, where’s your beer?” said one moments before Tom knocked him overboard with a boathook. “You scratched my new deck!” Tom shouted after him. Meanwhile I was busy subduing two others who had stepped onto the foredeck. Within seconds I had lashed one to the mast and thrown the other back into the boat from whence they had originated. The attack ended just as quickly as it had begun.
As we sailed back to the harbor to drop off our new passenger at the harbormaster’s office, Tom remarked at what an amazing team we’d made fending off the intruders. I blushed self-consciously, unwilling to admit that I had been a little slow to react and that my skills garnered from years of fending Somali pirates off from commercial freighters had obviously gotten rusty. I simply thanked him and remained quiet. Upon reaching land again, he insisted that we must go boating again. I nodded, this time with no hope that we would be joined by our landlubber coworkers. We would be able to handle the pirates just fine ourselves.
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