So, yeah, we could use a little warmth. And early Tuesday morning, someone (or someones) piloting a more than 1,300-foot-long ship, now known to the Internet as the Suez Canal boat captain guy, was kind enough to provide it, when he somehow managed to jam one of the worlds largest boats sideways in the Suez Canal a jam he couldnt manage to unjam.
It probably shouldnt be comical. No other ships could get through, after all, stranding more than 100, costing untold millions in shipping delays. In the old days and by, the old days, we mean most of human history youd just go around Africa. But these arent the old days. These are the new days, ones replete with phrases like murder hornets. Of course this caused a global crisis. It lasted for less than a day, but thats long enough for it to become Marchs version of that Very Sad Rockefeller Christmas tree from November.
Lets put it this way: When someone joked that were five minutes away from learning all of our vaccines were being stored on the big ship stuck in the Suez Canal for some reason, it took an uncomfortably long second to realize thats fiction. The whole thing feels so absurd, so ridiculous, so perfectly on-brand for the state of the world that it crossed the bridge from heinous to hilarious.
Instead of wondering how on Earth does a boat get stuck in the canal that sees almost 20,000 ships a year, everyone just thought: Well, duh. Theres nothing the sadistic screenwriters of our current reality can throw at us to faze us anymore. Instead, we delight in the disaster. What else can we do?
The late Joy Division frontman Ian Curtis once opined that Love Will Tear Us Apart. What he failed to mention is a ship lodged in a canal like a particularly stubborn cork in a wine bottle would bring us together. As the cartoonist Jephs Jacques put it on Twitter, Good news for today: whatever happens, at least youre not the guy who got his boat stuck in the suez canal and broke maritime shipping.
After all, who cant relate to comedian Kath Barbadoro, when she tweeted, As someone who is terrible at parallel parking I know exactly how the Suez Canal boat captain guy feels. Hes probably like ah geez. Oh brother.
But parking gaffes are the tip of this iceberg, not to mix our ship metaphors. Because we all have a memory, a mistake haunting us at night as the clock maddeningly ticks toward dawn. What shameful gaffe do you replay again and again and again, a broken film reel in your brains, when sleep proves elusive?
Whatever it is, you may be in luck. The Suez Canal guy might have just helped re-edit that reel, which podcaster Caspar Salmon seemed to realize when he decided to share his own humiliating misstep.
This thing with the boat in the Suez canal is making me feel better about the time I was working at Waterstones and got asked to shut off all the lights at closing time and pulled a lever in the back of the shop which caused a humming sound that didn’t stop for several months, he tweeted.
Ahh, yes, the truth shall set us free. The healing power of light. The cliches are cliche for a reason, and all that. The floodgates opened. Those midnight memories became joyful proclamations of petty failures as others rushed to share their own stories with Salmon.
This mortifying gem, from editor Victoria Richards: Once wrote a headline about a Very Famous Person but accidentally put fattest instead of richest and hit publish.
A boat hasnt been this unifying or this cleansing since Boaty McBoatface. If nothing else, its a good reminder that the world may be going to hell, but at least its warm there.