Excerpts from Sig Hansen and Mark Sundeen's 'North by Northwestern'
Salty bits from a memoir co-authored by "Deadliest Catch" captain Sig Hansen and writer Mark Sundeen.
Excerpts from 'North by Northwestern,' by Sig Hansen and Mark Sundeen:
Time is money: "One time a skipper in the fleet announced that he was taking the day off to go to port to watch the Super Bowl. I was stunned. My crew was looking at me, wondering if we should do the same. I whipped out my calculator. So, four hours to watch a game? 'Well, four hours of crab, that's ten grand,' I said. 'You want to miss that kind of money?' "
It's a gamble: "We have no way of knowing whether any crab are crawling around 400 feet beneath us. Despite all of our technology and experience, ultimately we're merely dropping a steel box to the ocean floor and hoping the crab crawl in ... In my mind finding the crab is more of a challenge — a gamble — which is why I like it."
Are they lying? "I always monitor the radio ... if a skipper is blabbing for a while and then goes quiet, you might guess he's on the crab ... The better you know the players, the better you can tell when they're bluffing, lying, hiding or telling the truth ... I can smell when they're lying. I know when they're hiding something. ... That's part of fishing."
His father's Ballard: "The streets of Ballard rang with the musical rhythms of spoken Norwegian. The young blond moms pushed their babies in buggies ... The Norsemen Cafeteria on Market Street served pancakes, coffee and smorgasbord. Just across the street was Johnsen's Scandinavian Food, where you went for pickled herring and lutefisk."
Viking hangout: "The (Ballard) Smoke Shop ended up being the bear's lair for crab fishermen in Seattle. The whole era of big-money crab fishing and rowdy drinking by a rough crew of squareheads — it all went down in the Smoke Shop. In the Viking sagas, you had the Great Halls with goblets of mead wine and whole roasted pigs; in the Hansen saga you have a double Crown Royal straight up at the Smoke Shop."
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