Boogie Nights

A sweary hyperactive maritime professional, really very keen on laughing a lot, doing their best to avoid all the trappings of societies' expectations by acting on impulse to any adventurous idea that wafts by. Let's go!

bienvenu, hola, ciao!

03 April 2015

Size Matters

Size anxiety

It's a thing.

Big Daddy. As a kid in the 80's he was a BIG thing.

It's very easy to become obsessive about space saving, weight saving and generally keeping a small living space uncluttered. Especially if you are trying to keep that space as light as possible with a view to being competitive during the odd race offshore.
It's also easy to accumulate larger things because of the extra added value perceived to be given by buying in bulk.

"Part of this obsession manifests in size anxiety."

When the HP sauce ran low recently, a very well meaning friend popped out and bought a new bottle. The new bottle resembled a WW2 Sherman Tank

"Sherman Tank WW2". Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons

My natural reaction of holding out the offending bloated sized bottle enquiring "what is this?" sent the dog scurrying for his bed. He'd heard that disapproving phrase before when he'd left me a brown present in the doorway. Anyone would have thought my poor guest had done the same. I had to very carefully explain why the original sauce bottle was so small in the first place.

It was the kind of terse conversation that ends with "fine, I'll get another one then"

HP sauce. Massive bottle. They make a picnic sized one don't you know?
But it doesn't stop with sauce bottles.

Everything is carefully calculated to fit into a very particular space. Every nook and cranny of this Dehler 36 has a specific shape, perfectly suited for a tupperware or a space saving method of containment.

The cocktail cabinet, after its repeated public inspection, followed by gasps of "how much?" (and subsequent assisted lightening of its load at the end of the Triangle Race 2014), has been gradually replenished, but instead of glass bottles, now everything has a designated plastic bottle which has been carefully labelled. All new liquids are decanted on arrival. (weight saving: 15kg of glass)

Each cupboard has been methodically inspected and contents removed on a twice yearly basis. The contents are inspected, audited, reinstalled or removed. 

Over the years I have collected a few DVDs and CDs. The CD's have been removed from their plastic boxes, copied to MP3 on a memory stick and then the originals stashed away in a wallet in the "shed". The DVDs haven't been copied to a hard drive but they are kept neatly and space savingly in a wallet.
No plastic cases remain. Because they're massive and pointlessly use up space.

When a friend hopped onboard with a collection of 10 DVDs, pristine and still in their original cases, my first thought was, where the f'ck do you think you're putting them?  Don't you realise you're displacing air with that lot? 

Air displacement

I've started choosing who I invite onboard because they are slightly smaller.

It's not just friends that trigger my size anxiety by bringing oversized things onboard, I do it to myself too. Constantly making lists of clothes, how big they are, what they weigh.

Is there an optimum amount of pants and socks?
This list states the ideal numbers of clothes. 7 t-shirts. 5 shirts. 5 pairs of trousers. 3 pairs of shorts and so on.
The ideal number is always one or two less than what I have in reality. Making me look again at what I actually have and do I really really need it?
For the love of my fucking sanity, have you seen the size of the plastic packaging around those samosas? 
Sorry to all visitors, both current and future, in advance for all the times I will be utterly inconsolable about oversized packaging, large bags, dvd cases, sauce bottles or anything at all remotely larger than expected.

space invaders. small entertainment


things I have obsessed over recently:

cooking oil: a regular 1ltr bottle of cooking oil. It fits NOWHERE but the fridge. It took 1.5 years to get through the last 1ltr bottle, which had been slowly decanted into a smaller 30ml bottle that fits in the cupboard easily. The day I finally finished that vat of oil I celebrated. The following day, a well meaning friend bought ANOTHER 1ltr bottle. I now have a 1ltr bottle in the fridge again.

Plain flour: I have a clear plastic tub that will take 500g bags of flour no problem. Whatever you do, don't bring a 1.5kg bag of flour onboard, no matter how good value it is. It doesn't fit. Oh what's that? They only sold 1.5kg bags of flour. Oh. bugger. We'll be eating pancakes then.

croissant packaging: Why do they package 4 croissants in a gift box the size of an articulated truck?

Indian snacks: those massive plastic cases that samosas and onion baajis come in from the fresh counter at the supermarket? No, please no. 
They serve no purpose other than to perform badly at protecting their contents and then are placed immediately in the bin as the snacks are repackaged immediately in order to fit in the boat fridge.

The size of the new cordless drill case. Massive. There's enough space in that thing for two drills. and chargers. I've only got one. I feel cheated.

The pan handles. Someone make pans without handles please. Oh what's that? Tefal make some? Right, I'm having a look at that. (edit 2017: I got pans without handles, they're utterly fabulous)

Motorbike kit: it does not belong on a boat. Why have I got my motorbike kit on the boat? Why? What appears reasonably sized when worn takes on a different dimension when brought inside a boat. Suddenly the air is displaced by a mass of armour and creaking leather. I. Can't. Breath.

DVD cases: See above

Brown sauce bottles: See above

Upon hearing someone would like to invite a friend to visit: er, how big are they?

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