by Rupert Insider
Today from his cockpit in Valencia, or wherever else he actually is, Captain Duncan Oldham slashed the air with his iron hook and issued a blood-curdling warning to the crew of his pirate ship “KopTalk”.
Remember what I did last summer – he snarled – I’ll do it again you varmints – I’ll cull you all.
And to give his threat some teeth he confirmed that First Mate, “Dense” MacNeish is in full command of the ship with direct authority to make the whole crew walk the plank, if necessary. And to rub salt in their wounds the captured slave-girl “Vacant” Katrina will also have powers of arrest.
We know what he did last summer. Captain Oldham panicked.
The blog started. He could not grapple it, board it or broadside it or frighten it with his “hitters”. He could not ban it, or lock it or delete it. So he tried to ridicule it. Then he tried to shout it down with his own blogs (in the plural).
And when all that failed he flogged anyone who talked about it and chained them below deck. They may have paid him 30 pieces of 8 to come aboard but he’d show them who was Captain of his ship.
But he could still hear the mutinous mutterings. So he got nasty. He gave 20 lashes to anyone who mentioned the blog, hung them from the yard-arm and fed them to the sharks.
He did the same to anyone who asked about the crew members who had “disappeared”. Then to those who asked about those who had asked about those – and so on.
I don’t know how many mutineers he culled last summer – possibly 30 to 50. To cover up his paranoid blood-fest he said he did it to protect the mutes from the troublemakers. (Apparently there were thousands of frightened mutes lurking in the riggings).
The Captain learned his maths in the school for thieves. He was never very good at honest figures. The truth is he lost well over 1,000 crew last summer. And they were not culled – they abandoned ship.
It seems he smells mutiny in the air again. Like Captain Queege of The Caine Mutiny, he fancies some of the crew are talking behind his back. He thinks they are laughing at him, calling him “Craptain” instead of “Captain”. Some of them are questioning his tall stories. They want to look inside his treasure chest.
In his mind its beginning to feel like the summer of 2006 all over again – and you know what that means.
So bring in the popcorn, The Koptalk Kull- Part 2 should make for an entertaining summer.