Marine industry and the NFL

If you’re like me, this time of year gets you excited because the 32 teams that make up the National Football League are in camp. What I can do without is the analysis that permeates networks like Fox and ESPN. I like the news they give me, but they can keep the analysis.

I’ve been watching football since Y.A. Tittle quarterbacked the New York Giants. Do you really have to tell me it’s a tough profession? Granted, it’s a tough way to make a living. But so is working in the marine industry.

My beloved New Orleans Saints have been in camp in West Virginia for the past two weeks. The team went to West Virginia to get away from the oppressive humidity of southeast Louisiana. The guys are away from their families during this time. Imagine that? What about when a boat captain who has been in the Gulf (oppressive humidity) for two weeks, away from his or her family, comes into port, finds out the relief didn’t show, and has to head back to the wheelhouse?

What’s really tough in the NFL, our emotional experts tell us, is a “busted” play. This is when things break down and what was supposed to have happened, doesn’t. Really? Could someone die from a busted play? Doubtful. But if a boat crew is transferring fuel and unbeknownst to them a ship loses steering and is headed right for them, could someone lose his or her life? Yes.

The NFL quarterback has to know exactly where everyone is on the offensive side of the ball, and, hopefully, be able to figure out what the players on the other side of the line are trying to do. Think that’s hard? How about pushing a 30,000 bbl. barge along the Houston Ship Channel in a summer downpour and hoping all the other vessels nearby do what they’re supposed to do?

Yes, the NFL is a tough place to make a living, but let’s keep it in perspective.

Go Saints…

About the author

Ken Hocke

Ken Hocke has been the senior editor of WorkBoat since 1999. He was the associate editor of WorkBoat from 1997 to 1999. Prior to that, he was the editor of the Daily Shipping Guide, a transportation daily in New Orleans. He has written for other publications including The Times-Picayune. He graduated from Louisiana State University with an arts and sciences degree, with a concentration in English, in 1978.

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