Messing About In Ships

Messing About In Ships podcast #5 by Peter A. Mello
January 4, 2008, 6:22 pm
Filed under: podcast, shownotes

Episode 5 of Messing About In Ships is launched!

Listen here:

Download the MP3 file here: Messing About In Ships podcast #5

(27 minutes)

A Mariner’s Perspective

Master Mariner Captain Kelly Sweeney, monthly contributor to Professional Mariner magazine and author of From the Bridge: Authentic Modern Sea Stories presents some maritime issues in 2008;

gCaptain t-shirt contest

(1) Submit a new story to gCaptain’s Discoverer News and (2) send an audio comment for Episode 6 of the Messing About In Ships and you will be eligible to win a snazzy gCaptain t-shirt. (For audio comments, please call +1-206-9730-7000, Skype: maispodcast or attached an MP3 file to an email to

Internet Ports of Call

John – Countryman and McDaniels’ –

Peter – Center for Leader Development –


Starting a mariner group on Pownce – send an email to for an beta invitation.

John on Pownce and Twitter

Peter on Pownce and Twitter

This Week’s Music

“The Ocean” by Lez Zeppelin from the Podsafe Music Network.

Please subscribe via iTunes or download the MP3. (Windows users and save the file on your computer. You can then open it in Windows Media Player, iTunes and other media players.)

Transcript of the Show:

Peter: We are on our third installment of a Mariner’s Perspective with Captain Kelly Sweeney. Let’s listen to what he has to say this week.


Welcome back to A Mariner’s Perspective with Captain Kelly Sweeney, who is a master mariner and a contributor to Professional Mariner Magazine. Welcome, Kelly.

Captain Sweeney: Ahoy, Peter, to you and all the listeners – Happy New Year!

Peter: Happy New Year to you, too! Here we are in January and it is that time of year where we look a little bit over the transom but probably more so over the bow. What do you see coming over the bow in the maritime industry?

Captain Sweeney: 2008 is going to be a year of interesting times, as they say. There are many issues affecting us working mariners that are going to be facing us head on this year. I think some of the big ones include security. That is going to be a continuing issue, not only with the restriction on shore leave but also for the Transportation Worker’s Identity Card that many of us U.S. mariners are going to have to deal with in the near future. By September of this year.

Another American mariner’s issue is going to be the consolidation of the regional exam centers and having all the licenses and documents issued through Martinsburg, West Virginia at The National Maritime Center. I have a lot of trepidation over this and how it will affect us with potential delays. It is going to be an issue that is coming right, straight ahead of us in 2008.

On the international scale, the Law of the Sea Treaty and the ratification of that. The implementation of the Law of the Sea Treaty is g䡃䭎䭗⁓
issue is going to be the consolidation of the regional exam centers and having all the licenses and documents issued through Martinsburg, West Virginia at The National Maritime Center. I have a lot of trepidation over this and how it will affect us with potential delays. It is going to be an issue that is coming right, straight ahead of us in 2008.

On the international scale, the Law of the Sea Treaty and the ratification of that. The implementation of the Law of the Sea Treaty is gC䡎䭗䭓 
‘s listen toPeter Mello: Welcome to Messing About In Ships Episode number five. It is January 4th, 2008. We are back from the holidays bringing you a Maritimer’s Perspective with Captain Kelly Sweeney looking at maritime issues in 2008. Our internet ports of call will take us to some incidents and leadership websites. We have two offers for listeners to ÔPownce’ on and we will finish up with some podsafe music.

[Ship noises]


John Konrad: Welcome to Messing About In Ships podcast episode five! Brought to you by Peter Mello of Sea-Fever Consulting and John Konrad at Evening, Peter.

Peter: Hey, John. How are you?

John: I’m doing great. How are you doing?

Peter: I am doing very well, thanks. You are back on the ship?

John: Yes. The crew changed. A very cold day in New Orleans yesterday. Sixteen degrees with the wind chill but I am back on the ship now. Feeling (?) a little harsh weather, 45 knots of wind but otherwise everything is good. How is Massachusetts?

Peter: It is pretty chilly up here today. I don’t think it broke twenty. It was pretty chilly and windy but crystal clear. One of those beautiful winter days that we get up here.

I know you were traveling a lot over the holidays and we met and have spoken since then. Did you have a good New Year’s Eve?

John: Yeah! A great New Year’s Eve. I live in California and we invited over a lot of the other young families in the area and we had an east coast New Year’s. We watched the ball drop in Times Square at 9:00 California time and let the kids go to bed early. It was a lot of fun.

Peter: Great!

John: Yourself? You had some visitors from London?

Peter: Yes, we had visitors from the UK over and we had a great time. Some small children got together with ouroing to be a major international regulation that is affecting all citizens in the world, but certainly every mariner who goes to sea. The Law of the Sea is going to up for a ratification vote in the U.S. Senate early in 2008. It will be very interesting to see what happens that way.

In my column, A Mariner’s Notebook at Professional Mariner Magazine,, I have already put out some of my issues which focus around short sea shipping and how it will affect U.S. cabotage law, maritime cabotage law, The Jones Act, and certification of cooks. The United States is one of the few maritime countries that requires no certification for those doing the cooking on board the vessel. I think it is time for that to change. Of course, those are just some of the issues that are coming up.

I would like to hear more from the listeners. If anybody has any ideas or thoughts, something that we may not know about here in the States, please drop me a line at I would love to hear from the listeners.

Peter: Great. Listeners can also put their comments forward in the show notes at the blog Messing About In Ships, and they can also send their emails to We will make sure that those questions and comments get directed to Captain Sweeney for review either here or in Professional Mariner Magazine.

Thank you so much for a great first Mariner’s Perspective and I look forward to talking to you again soon.

Captain Sweeney: Sounds great, Peter. I wish you and all listeners smooth sailing until we chat again.


Peter: John, this week we are going to skip our typical sea stories and I think you have a little contest. You want to give away some gcaptain swag?

John: Yeah. We got some t-shirts printed up for gcaptain and we sell them over on our blog, but I would like to offer a few free t-shirts to some of our podcast listeners. The contest is real easy. What we do is, we pull a lot of the Stories of the Week from the Discoverer section of our blog.

The first part of the contest is to head over to gcaptain, click on Discoverer – you will have to sign up for an account which is real easy to do, just need your name and email – then hit the submit button. You just pick an internet address, a story you find anywhere on the internet or a photo, a video. Take that address, put it in the box, click submit. Write a short description, it can even be copied and pasted from the original aritcle, hit submit, and that will be answered in our Discoverer.

The second part of the contest is audio comments. We have a new audio line. You dial our phone number, which can be found on the blog, and it’s just like voice mail. After you hear the beep, you leave your comment. It can have anything to do with the podcast, questions for us or anything that interests you.
Anyone who does those two things – submits a Discoverer story and leaves an audio comment – by this time next Thursday, will get a free t-shirt.

Peter: They are sharp t-shirts. I actually won one when we initially met through the contest for the i-phone. I think you sent me one then and I proudly wear it. Especially when I am podcasting. It seems to be an inspiring t-shirt to wear.

John: We will have to start a video contest of people wearing the t-shirt. A video podcast.


Peter: There we go! There is a good idea.


That is great. That is exciting. The phone number for the call is (206) 973-7000. You can leave your audio comment on that line and we will get it and figure out a way to integrate it into the program.

Alternatively, if you use Skype, you can get us at maispodcast. That is Messing About In Ships podcast or at (206) 973-7000.

John: All the other listeners can always just put a comment on the blog page and we will read that out loud, too. So that is another option for commenting.

Peter: Yeah, great, but we really want to get an audio comment here. We got a couple of comments through the blog and through e-mail. It would be nice to get our first audio comments. Whoever is the first person is going to be the lucky recipient of a gcaptain t-shirt, sounds like.

John: Yeah. I have got a few here so anyone who does it in the next week. Hopefully I won’t have to give out a hundred, but that could be a good thing, too.

[talking over each other]

John: [xx]

Peter: You might want to limit it to the first É


Anyway, okay, I will leave that up to you.

John: [xx]


Peter: We are going to move on to our Internet Ports of Call. It is going to be a shorter program since this is a holiday week and we just thought we would jump into our Internet Ports of Call. John, you had something you wanted to tell us about?

John: Yes. A popular feature on our blog was the incident photo of the day and I was posting this regularly back in the early months of the gcaptain blog. We fell away from it for a variety of reasons, the main one being there were so many interesting real incidents happening each week that we were focusing on that.

The internet photo of the day is just a photo from the past, it could be a photo from a few months back or a few years back, just some incident that went wrong along with a photo and a short description. My pick of the week is cargo It is an interesting website. Some maritime attorneys in L.A., I believe, accept anonymous photos from crew members around the world after an incident. A big incident happens, somebody has a digital camera and they take a shot.

If you are in the maritime circle and have a lot of maritime friends, the photos usually make the email round. Forwarded on across the world to mariners in different ships in different areas. These guys take these emails and post them on their website. Which gives the average person or someone who is not privy to these forwarded emails a chance to look at them. They have some really amazing photos on there.

The site was really old. It has been around for a long time so it was designed in the late 90’s. It wasn’t the most attractive site but they just did a complete redesign. It is still not the web 2.0 graphics you will find on sea-fever but it looks a lot better and there are some great photos and really interesting stuff.

The Incident Photo of the Day that I posted this week was: they were transporting fireworks in a cargo container. While the ship was out to sea, the container full of fireworks ignited and exploded. A nearby ship was able to take a photo of this amazing yet unfortunate incident, but a spectacular fireworks show. That is the incident photo we used this week. It kind of ties into New Year’s. They have an incredibly large library of these photos. It is a great site, so when you have some free time to just browse around on a lazy Sunday or something.

Peter: Yeah. There is a lot there. I have been there a couple of times and gotten deep into it and found that I spent a little more time than I had initially budgeted. There is lots and lots of information, interesting photos and other information on that website. People should check it out.

My internet port of call this week is a blog written by The Center for Leader Development. I am one of the team bloggers over there. The founder of The Center for Leader Development is Scott Allen and he has a Ph.D. in leadership. He is a leadership professor at John Carroll University in Cleveland. I met him at a program that I participated in last year at Harvard Kennedy School called The Art and Practice of Leadership Development. He was a blogger, I was a blogger and we got together and kind of hit it off and developed a friendship.

Through our discussions, he decided to turn his leadership blog into a team blog and now there are ten bloggers who contribute to The Center for Leader Development blog. There is a wide array of perspectives. From Ph.D. professors to consultants to students in both undergrad and graduate programs. Bloggers from throughout the world. Two of our colleagues are Harvard program bloggers. One is a woman who is a consultant from Australia and the other one is a guy who runs a youth leadership non-profit in Israel. A wide, wide range of perspectives, opinions.

A lot of times, what I will do is I will actually cross post. I am writing something for the sea-fever blog about leadership, I will cross post it. On The Center for Leader Development blog, nearly every day there is an interesting post. A lot of the time it is references to other articles. I will just read you what it says here about the CLD blog. ÔThe purpose of CLD is to provide individuals who have a passion for leadership development a gathering place on the internet. At CLD you will find leadership development resources, job links, tools, conference announcements, cool links, publications and information rich content regardless of the sector from which you hail’.

They have a Wiki there that it is chock full of leadership information. There is also a section in there about Leadership and Literature. It has lots and lots of information. If you have any interest in studying or learning about leadership, I definitely encourage you to go and spend some time over there. You won’t be disappointed. It is The Center for Leader Development at Check it out.

John: Sounds interesting. There is some user interaction and you can post comments.

Peter: Yes, you can. There is a Wiki as well that you can make contributions to if you join, but certainly the blog postings. I actually go over there and comment quite frequently. My colleagues, my fellow bloggers over there have some pretty interesting posts. It is a great destination. I hope people check it out and we will have the URL on the show notes.

John: That is one of the great things about the new media. A lot of very interesting and therapeutic people have blogs nowadays and if you go and comment on their site you can often get free advise. Free answers to your questions and concerns.

Peter: Sometimes you just put a idea or thought out there. If you are commenting on somebody else’s blog, you have a way to kind of confirm that the direction you are taking something might be valid or shared by some other people out there or it may not be. That is the interesting thing about the socialÉ

John: You never know. It could be used in his next Harvard class on your comments.

Peter: John, we also talked about Pownce a little bit. I think that is one of the ways I initially met you. You want to tell people a little bit about what Pownce is and what we might be able to do?

John: Pownce is a new social network. It is tough (?) to describe.. If anyone is familiar with Twitter, it is along those lines. Peter, I guess you can put our Twitter names in the show notes.

Peter: Yep.

John: So people can contact us that way as well. How it works is, it is kind of like instant messenger but it is not live. It is built around the capability to share information. You can share links and files. If you find something interesting on the Web or you just want to contact a friend to hang out that week-end, you can post a note on Pownce. It has powerful features that lets you send a message or a link. A lot of people share music files. You hear good music or a song, you can set it up so you can send it to groups of people.

We want to offer some free invites to our listeners and set it up as a little maritime community. If you have a file or just want to talk and share stories, it is real easy to use quickly to do that. It has got a beautiful design. The best designer in the Web industry as far as I am concerned, is dburka. He works on the site He put together the whole site along with the program [xx]. Just a real talented web designer.

Peter: I think it is a really interesting tool. I use both Twitter and Pownce for different purposes. In Twitter you are limited to 140 characters when you want to send a message. Pownce doesn’t have that limitation and like John says, it allows you to transfer fairly large files. If you are a pro user, you can send a file to somebody else, I think up to 100 megs. It is a pretty significant file transfer mechanism. You can integrate into it Flickr photos and U2 videos in addition to the messaging aspect of it.

The great part about it is – I check it out once or twice a day – there is always something interesting in there. I always steer in the direction of something I would probably never have come in contact with previously. If you are interested in exploring new things, I think both Twitter and Pownce but particularly Pownce, where we have these free invites we are going to offer to people. We are hoping to create a little maritime group in there so we can share information. We hope that people take advantage of it. It can be useful and fun at the same time. We will have more information about that in the show notes, as well. Do you have anything else?

John: Real quick. What I really like about Pownce – they are going to open it up to everyone eventually, but right now it is a closed community and the invites have been hard to get – it is really people who are [xx] , really intelligent conversation and ideas being shared on the site. I think that kind of sets apart from some of the other sites. The sharing of ideas.

Peter: Yes, definitely.

John: [xx] the maritime community.

Peter: Just another way to communicate. At first when you get in there it seems like it could be a little intimidating but it is not. Anybody who comes through Messing About In Ships will immediately have a community with us there. It could be a lot of fun so I hope you join us.

Do you have anything else you want to talk about this week, John?

John: No. I think that is about it. Yourself?

Peter: No, I guess not. I just tell people they can always get us on the show blog, leave comments, or email us at . You can get John through his blog, is your email address over there, right?

John: Correct.

Peter: The thing about is there is a lot to do and see over there. The blog is always very interesting. The Discoverer News Site is one of my favorite destinations. The forums are great and we really talk about the Mariner Web Tools that you have over there. That is a fantastic resource for people. Check that out.

My blog is and you can leave comments for me over there. We talked about Skype. Our Skype i.d. is maispodcast. That is Messing About In Ships podcast.

Finally, we have a telephone number you can call and leave a voice mail for an audio comment. We hope you try and do that this week. Take advantage of the generous gcaptain t-shirt offer. The number (206) 973-7000.

Next week, we look forward to getting back to you with some of our typical sea stories. We will be away from this holiday season and get back into the swing of things.

So John, great talking to you and I look forward to catching up with you again next week.

John: Sounds great. I’ll talk to you then.

Peter: Each week we bring you podsafe music. What that basically is, is music that is available to pod casters free of charge from artists in return for promoting the artist. We are always very grateful and we have generally been getting our podsafe music from the podsafe music network.

In December, the band Led Zeppelin had a reunion in London which was pretty broadly covered. This week we are bringing you a podsafe band called Lez Zeppelin which is a group formed in New York City in 2004. An all-girl, all Led Zeppelin quartet, it has gained unanimous acclaim as one of the most exciting live acts around, becoming the first female rock act to pay homage to Led Zeppelin and they have gotten rave reviews across the board. Hope you enjoy this song from Led Zeppelin. It is called ‘The Ocean’.

[Music: The Ocean’ by Led Zeppelin]


2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Please be good enough to spare us the inappropriate head banging music as included the Episode 5.

Comment by Marapito

Thanks for listening and commenting. Your musical tastes have been duly noted and we encourage your suggestion for next week or future episodes.
Keep listening and commenting. 🙂

Comment by Peter A. Mello

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