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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Thursday, June 20, 2024
Deadliest Catch

Making the ‘deadliest catch’

Now that I’m back in the grind of the semester, I don’t have a lot of time on my hands. I mean, there’s going to class, my internship, readings and now my newest commitment, which is the most time consuming: Having the couch fused to my leg hairs as I mentally ride the waves of the Bering Sea on the deck of the Northwestern during king crab season. 

For those of you who know what I’m talking about… then you know what I’m talking about. For those of you who are sick of my weird TV crap and my cocky assumption that you ever read this/care at all, I urge you, in my last stitch effort to get you shaking and begging for your next hit of TV, to run, not walk, to Netflix, put your survival suits on and feast your eyes on some of the greatest TV ever made. 

I’ve only been watching this show for a day and a half, and I’m already on the fifth episode of the second season (and NO all my homework is NOT done, MOM). Every second I sit here (because clearly I can’t even pull myself away to write this column, and don’t think I’m not a little bit irked that I can’t figure out why Maverick’s engine stopped running) I become surer and surer that I’m going to take a gap year and become a greenhorn (n00b) on one of these ships. I can see it now-—queue Bon Jovi’s “Dead or Alive.”

I arrive on the docks of Dutch Harbor, Ala., just a dewey-eyed kid lookin’ for some fast money and a hard day’s work. As I go to shake the hand of Sig Hansen, captain of the Northwestern, he quickly denies me and adds, “I’ll shake your hand at the end of the season if you’ve done a good job.” This isn’t going to be a crab cakewalk (lol), but there’s no time for jokes on the Northwestern. I’ve got to get to chopping up frozen bait. 

In the meantime I try to bond with the rest of the deckhands, which mostly means me getting called "a wuss" and "a baby" and getting crabs shoved down my pants. Nothing has ever made me happier. I am a grinning fool.

Naturally, I’ve picked up a small chain-smoking habit, smell like sweat, testosterone and ocean mud, and I can barely understand the words coming out of my mouth. 

As we pull up full pot after full pot of crab, we yell stuff like, “Arghlookat ’em yeeebuddy!” and “Asawaywelikemyeaaaa.” It’s such fun. Capt. Sig invites me into the wheelhouse (lol yea right) as a thank-you for my hard work. As he talks fishing strategy with our partner boat, he says stuff like, “Roger, Roger,” “’Bout to drop our gear,” and “I’m thinkin’ we’re gonna pull another string and head to offload.” 

I love this. 

After a madly successful seven days at sea, we offload and I make out with $1,000, and finally, a prized handshake from Capt. Sig.  I’ve been asked to come back next season as a deckhand. At this point, I’ve been watching the show so long I realized I’m just writing like the narrator because that’s apparently the only language I can communicate in now. This show has ruined me, but I love it.

Do you understand the phrase  “Arghlookat ’em yeeebuddy”? Maybe you’d be interested in joining Jackie and the other greenhorns on the crab boat. Send Jackie a message in a bottle or drop her an email at

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