The main tourism in the British Virgin Islands is all about the sailing. Famous for practically year-round ideal trade winds, these tranquil waters are one of the top destinations in the world for seamen and seawomen to get their sail on. Living on my little rock in the middle of all the action, I am surrounded by boats every day of the year.
Watching the boats come in and out of the Sound each day, I can’t help but take notice of their names. Few are intriguing, some are memorable, most are generic, and many incite collective groans in their wake. Call me petty, but I’d like to see a bit more creativity out there. I’d enjoy spotting more names that make me want to know the story behind them. Or, at the very least, less that make me want to roll my eyes and yawn.
While the appeal of a boat’s name is highly subjective and there’s no formula for what makes a winner, there are definitely a few categories of names that are more groan-inducing than others…
Perhaps these types of boat names were considered wildly clever back in the advent of puns. Maybe the first time people ever saw a boat named Knot So Fast it was a laugh riot. Maybe. But now, if I can borrow a phrase from 1997, “they are played out, yo.”
If I’ve seen them once, I’ve seen them dozens of times. Such is their popularity that when I spot these pun-tabulous handles, they often have Roman numerals after them: FriendShip VII – meaning that they are the 7th+ person to register their boat in that country under that name. If that’s not a sign to branch out, I don’t know what is.
These types of names are notorious eye roll instigators. I feel almost as though my intelligence is being insulted. Please, oh please – don’t spell it out for us. Choose something – anything – else.
It’s Aboat Time
Keel n’ Time
Seas the Moment
and, eye roll if you please,
To Sea Oar Knot To Sea
REFERENCES TO THE COST OF THE BOAT
We all get it – boats cost a lot of money to buy and a continuous stream of money to maintain. Money that you could be spending elsewhere. But you’re not, because you have a boat. Hilarious, isn’t it?! Hardy har har.
Nobody likes hanging around a whiner who’s constantly reminding them of how much all this fun is costing them. Don’t be that whiner; no one will want to play with you, even if you do have a boat.
Oh, and FYI, this also includes using dollar signs in place of your “s”s.
Her Shoe Money
The Money Pit
B.O.A.T = Bring Out Another Thousand
Price-Sea (double infraction)
Acrewed Interest (double infraction)
While I realize this was a customary practice in the Days of Yore, I’d like to think that we have evolved beyond naming our inanimate possessions after the women in our lives. Let it be known that this misguided “honor” is one I never wish to have bestowed upon me. The last thing I need is to give people a reason to say things like, “I’d love to take you out for a ride on Chrissann“; “Chrissann sprung a leak”; “Chrissann sank”; “Chrissann’s portholes are covered in rust”; “Chrissann is so filthy, it’s going to take us days to clean her before we can take her out.”
Plus, I can only imagine the conversational spotlight-stealing that this would lead to, always having to clarify who/what you’re referring to – do you mean Human Chrissann or Boat Chrissann? The injustice of it all would no doubt drive me to violence.
My deepest condolences go out to the women with boats named after them. Though it must be noted that the vast majority I see cruising around with women’s monikers invariably tend to be yachts. In which case, I don’t actually feel all that badly for their namesakes riding around in them. Even still, there is so much potential for something more exciting.
You get the idea. Blah de-blah blah blah. We can do better, people.
GRAPHIC DOUBLE ENTENDRES
This category of boat names is by far the worst offender. I generally don’t find it difficult to refrain from having sexual thoughts about perfect strangers, but these boat names all but force me to it. Here’s some average-looking person, reading a book on the bow of their anchored boat. Nothing to see here….then….BAM!..there it is – Master Baiter. No matter how much mental focus you devote to stopping it, it’s now all you can picture and it makes you want to puke all over that person and their boat, which you now assume you’d never want to see under a black light.
For whatever reason, people who own catamarans (boats with two hulls), or “cats” for short, are the most likely to christen their boats in this genre. That fine line between “cat” and “pussy” proves too tempting for them – they usually can’t resist crossing it.
If the judgmental disgust of your fellow human beings is not enough to deter you, consider this: one day your boat may be in peril and you may need to radio for help on the ever-public VHF. Suddenly, your urgent plea is corrupted with ridiculousness as you’re forced to scream, “Mayday, mayday, this is Dixie Normous. I repeat, this is Dixie Normous and we’re sinking!” Save yourself the embarrassment and speed the response time from your Coast Guard rescue team by not causing them an inevitable delay whilst they make fun of you mercilessly.
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Really and truly – let’s not overthink this. If you find that you’re trying to be funny, it’s a sure sign that you’re trying too hard. Just pick something that means something to you. Make it short, make it sweet, make it quirky, make it weird. Above all, just make it unique. And please – don’t make it FriendShip XXVI.