Thursday, August 14, 2008

Captain Splash

Perhaps you need to know the star of this video to appreciate it but I believe, once I've given you the background and circumstances, you'll see the humour.

The man in the video is the captain of a very swept-up, very high-tech, very fast coastal passenger vessel operating out of northern Vancouver Island. We all know him as Captain Bill and those of us who know him can attest to his astute knowledge, unquestionable skill and a razor-sharp wit. I can state, without reservation, that I have learned countless valuable lessons from this man. His safety record as a seafarer is impeccable.

Thank the sea gods that riding a bike wasn't one of them.

Captain Bill was down at his vessel retrieving a battery charger which he needed at home. The vessel's berth is a long way down that narrow float so he rode his bike down to the ship. By his account, he was proceeding down the dock and wanted to gear down to get up the ramp you see in the distance. The gear shift was on the left handlebar and you can see that his left hand is rather occupied carrying the battery charger.

So, he reached over with his right hand to shift gears. Physics took over.

Now, the operator of the dock in the picture had recently installed a security camera system. Bill was unaware of this fact at the time and went home to rinse off the salt water. (That didn't save the battery charger). While Bill would have liked to have kept this low-key and below the radar, some members of his "company" thought there might have been some video of the actual event. Sure enough, a replay of the previous evening's security capture was extracted from the hard drive and there was a perfect image of Bill exerting forces on the direction of the bicycle into the harbour.

Feel free to comment on the part you think is the funniest. Personally, I'm torn between the "hands-on-hips" while looking back into the harbour, the resigned but purposeful "walk-away-leaving-a-wet-trail" or the second look back at "the scene".

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