God…..I Am Bored

May 17, 2010 -

John Heald

Now and then I will get negative comments that my humour (spelt correctly) is not appropriate for a family audience. I am aware that sometimes I am a little near the mark but I am also aware of what I say. This means the comments I get are fairly rare…. except last cruise…….when I got 3…..3 negative comments in one cruise. Here is one of them.

Guest: Mrs. —–Ref: 802056111A
Cabin: ____ Booking#:——-Added-Changed: 05/14/10 – 05/14/10

C – CRUISE DIRECTOR RUDE
Gst reported  that she was unhappy with “toilet jokes” and “sex jokes” of the Cruise Director John during show. Gst stated that she did not feel it was good for jokes like this to her and her family.

And here is another:

Guest: Mrs —–Ref: 803096115A
Cabin: ____ Booking#:——-Added-Changed: 05/13/10 – 05/13/10

C – NO CHURCH SERVICES AND ENTERTAINMENT COMMENTS
Mrs…… came to the GSD and asked if there were religious services onboard. GSA said that there was not. Gst said that this should be changed as many want this on their vacation. Gst also said that the shows and jokes were rude and had sex and drinking all the time. Mrs.___ said that the Cruise Director was always making these and that the music by the band on Lido was also not appropriate.

There is a third one as well which turns out to be from another family member sharing a cabin with the lady who made the first complaint. So, what to say here. Well, I guess that now and then my humour (spelt correctly) is a little PG 13ish and I also know that the Southern states are very religious. This is now very much on my mind and I know its 3 out of 2,300 who didn’t like my jokes but it is 3 too many. I am therefore going to be extra careful once we get to Charleston and tone down my innuendo’s a little bit.

I called each guest to apologize and I have to say on both counts I got nowhere fast. One said that the ship played “devil’s music.”  And suggested that I need to be “saved.” This was all a little much for me and I decided to keep my apology short and sincere as she had made her mind up that I was a bad person and as she told me what a good Christian woman she was she found time to ignore the bit in the Bible about forgiveness and spent 10 minutes shouting at me down the phone about what a bad person I was and how Carnival “promoted sin.”

Now, I am a believer and as I have said here before….God does have a sense of humour …..I know because I see myself naked every morning. However, I apologized and admitted that I was a sinner and let her tell me so.

Anyway, I will need to be careful in Charleston. Strange though that I say much the same thing on ships out of Florida, Texas and Europe and very rarely do I get comments like this ………and yet during my first week out of Alabama………I get three.

Talking of toilet humour……… a guest engaged me in conversation at a urinal yesterday, which I found most inappropriate. So on today’s blog thingy we are going to have a brief refresher course on toilet etiquette before all semblance of order goes down the plughole. Let’s start with the public urinals……….all male bloggers ……. please read.

First, the basics. Never go in groups. You are not girls or wilder beast.

Position is important. If you arrive at an empty urinal, stand at the far left or far right, but never in the middle. This enables the next man to take the opposite extreme. If a third man arrives, he can take the middle slot, but it would be preferable if he abandoned the urinal altogether and went into a stall. Regardless of good intent, you should never hang around waiting for an ideal position – you may be mistaken for being George Michael.

Once the flow starts, keep your eyes dead ahead at all times, even in the event of the general emergency alarm sounding.

If you have the misfortune to find yourself at the urinal at the same time as the Cruise Director, a simple “Morning, I enjoy your shows” will suffice. “Me and my wife are here on our anniversary and we want to do something fun in Cozumel and can’t make our minds up between the Catamaran excursion or the Jeep Adventure. What do you recommend?” is too sodding much.

If you have eaten asparagus and you find yourself urinating upriver of another passenger, a simple “Sorry, asparagus” is polite and. Other than that, there should be absolutely no talking. As for drying off, three shakes is diligence. Four is…….well……..you know.

And so on to how to navigate the stall. Unless the show is about to start, or your chocolate melting cake is on the table getting cold, never take a cubicle next to one that is already occupied. Come back another time.

Never make a toilet-paper seat cover. If the fact that it is girlie isn’t enough to dissuade you, consider the following findings from the my friend the Duke of University who told me the average toilet seat has a mere 49 microbes of bacteria per square inch, whereas your desk has 20,691 per square inch. Which means eating your sandwich off the toilet seat is 400 times more hygienic than eating it at your desk, and your arse will survive.

Always leave the toilet bowl as you would like to find it, by which I mean wait to check it doesn’t need a double flush because of the double portion of Mongolian Wok with schezuan (sp?) sauce you had on Lido the day before. ……….never leave floaters ……….. that’s just rude.

As with the urinals, communication is forbidden, even if the toilet paper has run out. Girls may warn each other, “Don’t go in there, I just used the last paper” – but with men, it is simply the next user’s tough luck…..after all……….he can always use the toilet brush.

Try to time your exit for when the rest of the washroom is empty. On no account emerge proudly; passing comment to all and sundry on how pleased you are with what just went on behind the closed door with comments like “Sorry about the smell lads. I had a tooth growing up there.”

Oh, and lest you should be tempted to forget……… Always wash your hands.

Toilet humour? Me?……………..toilet humour my arse!

Time for today’s questions………away we go.

Carrie Duwelius Asked:
Please Reply 🙂

Hi John, I’ve sure enjoyed reading your blog, it helps pass the time between cruises 🙂 We are taking our 2nd Carnival Cruise in just under 3 weeks on May 9th (Mother’s Day!) on the Splendor. All three of my children are thrilled to cruise again, but mostly my 6 year old daughter. Cruising is all she thinks about, and it even came up at her Kindergarten parent teacher conference that Chloe finds a way to bring cruising into her work in art, math and creative writing. That’s my girl! Anyhow, she has asked numerous times for me to print cruise pictures for her to color, but the ones I’ve found on the web leave much to be desired. We even found one of the Splendor, but it doesn’t show the funnel so she claims it’s not “real”. I was impressed she noticed when I didn’t! I wanted to just make a suggestion to Carnival, to create some printable coloring pages of the various ships, Fun ship Freddie, and maybe some towel animals. Some mazes, cruise word puzzles, word games…that sort of thing to get kids and parents even more excited about upcoming cruises. A page on cruise vocabulary would be super helpful for children, and maybe even a fun sheet regarding cruise ship manners? Wink 😉 I was just thinking it would be a fun addition to “funville” on Carnival.com We are SO excited about our upcoming cruise on the Splendor, there is nowhere I’d rather spend Mother’s Day….or any other day for that matter!

John Says:
Hello Carrie Duewelius

I just read this now and see that you will have just returned from your family cruise on the Carnival Splendor and I am very sorry that I did not get to reply in time. I am still around three weeks behind…..bugger.

I know how popular Fun Ship Freddy is and your ideas of a printable page full of puzzles is an excellent one and a simple one for my friends with beards to do. It certainly would enhance the excitement for kids before the cruise starts. I have sent these ideas to one of the 343 Stephanies to look at and I will keep you informed as to what happens. I really think we can build up a full page and more of fun to get the children ready for their upcoming Camp Carnival adventures. I hope you all had fun on the Carnival Splendor and sorry again for the late reply.

Great idea, thanks again and best wishes to all
John

Paulette Totino Asked:
Please reply:

Dear John, I already posted how much we enjoyed the cruise on the Conquest 4/11–4/18. Everyone needs to work with the public for 2 weeks in their lifetime–maybe they would act differently.

We love cruising enough to bring my mom and dad on their 1st for their 60th anniversary (on the Ecstasy 5/15). It took the special occasion to convince them. Could you please post the words to your song about the bugger in the sugar? My friends and I got a kick out of it and want to tell our grandkids. LOL

Thanks again for a great time.

John Says:
Hello Paulette Totino

It would be my pleasure. OK, here we go to the tune of “If your happy and you know it clap your hands”…..here is……….”Is that a booger in the sugar.”

IS THAT A BOOGER IN THE SUGAR NO ITS NOT……………… (It’s and not should be sung together thus forming the word “snot).

IS THAT A BOOGER IN THE SUGAR NO ITS NOT

OH I HAD A BUNCH FOR LUNCH YOU CAN HERE THE SUCKERS CRUNCH

IS THAT A BOOGER IN THE SUGAR NO ITS NOT

There – hope you liked it.

I wish you all a great cruise and I hope Mum and Dad enjoyed the little gift I sent. Please wish them a very happy anniversary

Best wishes to all
John

Jennifer Asked:
Dear John (PLEASE REPLY)

I have a strange question- when you are a Carnival Employee do you have to sign a non disclosure agreement or something saying that when you no longer work for them you can’t go around telling people what everyone made and secrets that Carnival probably doesn’t want out there?

There is a girl on Facebook (Bettina Davis) that claims she worked for Carnival for 10 years and has been wrecking havoc on Facebook with how employees are only paid $40 a MONTH plus tips and how cruelly they are treated. That all the “HORRIBLE PASSENGERS” are basically supporting Carnivals unfair employment practices. She also has told everyone that Carnival lies and dumps their trash in the ocean and how you can bribe your waiter to give you an internet card that only the staff gets to get internet for .10 a minute.

Is this something Carnival really wants disclosed on their Facebook page? It’s infuriating to me because now she is bashing my beloved Carnival food and telling horrible things about it.

Just thought I would ask you about it.

John Says:
Hello Jennifer

I want to thank you for taking the time to write about this to me. I have never heard of Bettina Davis but like any major corporation there are always going to be disgruntled employees. The problem these days is that thanks to things like Myface and Spacebook these people have a way to publicly air their anger and as these are public websites there is little we can do about it. However, I will make sure I pass this to Vance in Public Relations and ask him to take a look at what the lovely Bettina is saying.

I can assure you that we adhere to the many wide-ranging environmental rules and regulations set forth by various maritime organizations………..maybe she should start posting on www. betinafull ofbollocks. Thanks you for bringing this to my attention and for being such a loyal Carnival supporter

Best wishes
John

GHarkness Asked:
John, (please reply)

Your Q&A today brings up a question. Sometimes when leaving the ship I purposely leave something behind that either I don’t want or need, or I think the stateroom attendant might find use for. Normally I go find the attendant and tell him: “Hey, I just want you to know I left my fan in my stateroom, but we have no need for it and you are welcome to keep it.” The attendant has always been very thankful, but I am wondering now….is he/she likely to get in trouble for “keeping” something I left behind? I certainly don’t want to get my attendant in trouble! How better should this be handled?

PS. I’m mad at you because you are on the Conquest and I am NOT! What justice is there in the world, when that can come to pass? 🙂

John Says:
Hello GHarkness

Sorry I won’t be with you when you sail on the Carnival Conquest. I loved that ship and I know you will have a brilliant time. Thanks for your question and the simple answer is that if a guest leaves something in the cabin for the state room steward as a gift then they are allowed to accept it. However, if an object is left without any prior advice being given, then it is turned into our lost and found department in Miami. A passenger on the Queen Elizabeth 2 once gave a waiter a Rolls Royce………so my hope that a guest will give me an Aston Martin still springs eternal.

Best wishes to all
John

Big Ed Asked:
JOHN PLEASE REPLY

In your post “Insurance And Sharks” Q&A Mary Jones said ” I realized I left my camera in Cabin XXXX”. In your answer you said “Anything that is left in a stateroom by a guest is sent to our lost and found department in Miami”. My question is this. Is the item found in the cabin tagged with the cabin # and the cruise ID so Miami knows where that item came from? Once in Miami do they make an effort to contact the guest from that cabin? Or does it just go there waiting for someone to call and try to claim it. I sure hope that they do try to contact the guest that was in that cabin and make arrangements to get their items back to them if they want them. An item found in a public area might be harder but do they make an effort to look in it to see if there is any ID and contact those guests?

BIG Ed

John Says:
Hello Big Ed

It seems that we have back to back questions on lost and found. I spoke just now to someone in our CARE Team because I wanted to find out exactly what happens. Most of the time a guest will call our Miami HQ stating that they have left their phone, camera, shoes, wife, socks, and underpants in the cabin. When this happens the CARE Team will reunite the phone, camera, wife, shoes, socks (not the underpants. They refuse) by mailing it to them. They are able to do this because the ship will have labeled the item with the sailing date and cabin number so that the information gets to HQ. Sometimes though I was told that guests have no idea that they have left their phone, camera, shoes, wife, socks, and underpants in the cabin and when they get a call from the CARE folks they seem genuinely surprised. Did you leave your underpants in the cabin on your Carnival Dream cruise recently Big Ed? If you did I am sorry to say that we didn’t find them………………..but they are very comfortable.

Best wishes to you and Pat
John

Nicola McCormick Asked:
Hi John, (please reply if you can)

Can you tell me when the elegant nights are on the Eastern sailing on The Dream? My husband would like to try the steakhouse and I don’t want to miss elegant night. Thanks in advance.

Nicola

John Says:
Hello Nicola

Here is the Eastern itinerary for June with the elegant nights marked. I think any night is a great night to eat in the Steakhouse but St. Maarten night would be great as you have a sea day to relax after that big meal.

Hope you enjoy it and have a great cruise

Best wishes
John

Sat, Jun, 05 Port Canaveral
Sun, Jun, 06 Nassau ELEGANT
Mon, Jun, 07 at sea
Tue, Jun, 08 St Thomas
Wed, Jun, 09 St Maarten
Thu, Jun, 10 at sea ELEGANT
Fri, Jun, 11 at sea

Jimborn Asked:
John – reply if you want

I realize you have to defend Carnival but there are many like me who are still managing to smuggle alcohol onboard to defeat having to pay your high bar charges. Here is a link to prove that it can be done

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1198812

We will not surrender to your stupidly high booze prices.

John Says:
Hello Jimborn

Thanks for letting me see this thread thingy and I have sent the link to our security department in Miami so they can inform the folks that search luggage accordingly. I truly appreciate you telling me how some guests are doing this so we can stop it. That was very kind of you.

Best wishes
John

Cruzin2some Asked:
DEAR JOHN PLEASE REPLY:

I received a travel magazine (Budget Travel) today and it had a section in it and it made me think. The section was fifty tips to make your next cruise the best ever. It had many of the usual tips like to book early to lock in prices, etc. It also had several ideas that I never thought of. So, I got to thinking (Yes I know that is dangerous) that with all of the expert cruisers that we have here on the blog that I am sure that we could come up with a hundred and not even break a sweat. You could then post a link thingy at the side of the blog and newbies could click on that link and viola (sorry about the French) they would have a 100 ideas that would help them have a great cruise. That is what Carnival is all about! Making sure that everyone has a great cruise experience. What do you think?

The Cruzin2some
James & Nancy Enslow

John Says:
Hello James & Nancy Enslow

That is a great idea and I am sure if we all put our minds to it that we could all share the areas that experience has shown will make travel easier. Why not have a go yourself and see what you can come up with and if anyone else has any information to share then please go right ahead and post away. Here is one to start you off.

1. Leave your worries and cares on the pier before you board. They are a prohibited item and will be waiting for you when the cruise is over. As soon as you walk up the gangway relax and let our friendly staff serve and entertain you.

I think it was a great idea and it will be interesting to see who writes what.

Thanks for your support and those great words you wrote about Carnival

Best wishes to you both
John

Lisa & Scott Asked:
Dear John (please reply),

A while back you had mentioned there would be exciting news on your photo program. Has there been any updates? I’m hoping they’ll go to swiping your S&S card so that all of your photos end up in one place. Then they let you review all of your photos either on board or when you get home with a pass code. Seems like this would save Carnival unwanted prints ($$) and give customers the ability to purchase whichever photo they want and in whatever size they want. At least this is what I’m hoping for. 🙂

Today we are 30 days away from our May 20th cruise on the Carnival Ecstasy!! (But who’s counting?! 🙂 ) This will be our 2nd cruise and we’ll be celebrating 20 years together and our 14th wedding anniversary. Just a short getaway so my kids don’t wear my mom out too much while we’re gone! Looking forward to seeing the refurbishments on the Carnival Ecstasy and I can’t wait to find a chair on the Serenity deck next to my hubby and gaze out at the water!

I very much enjoy your blog and reading it each day. It builds my excitement for our cruise even more! Keep up the good work!!

All the best to you and yours!

Lisa

John Says:
Hello Lisa

This shows that I am way behind in my answering of comments. When you wrote this you were 30 days from your cruise and here I am answering it 4 days before you sail. I know we have been looking at new and exciting ways of taking and selling the photos on your Carnival Dream and thanks for the reminder for me to find out what has been happening with this. I will get back to you soon. You will love the Carnival Ecstasy and her fantastic upgrades and Serenity will become your own personal slice of heaven.

Thanks for all the kind words and have a great cruise

Best wishes to you both
John

That’s all for today and of course there will be more tomorrow. Can I take a few words to say a big thank you for all the super birthday wishes posted by bloggers here and on Big Ed’s blog as well. Heidi has printed them out and will be adding them to her birthday scrapbook so one day she can read them. Thank you all.

OK, time for a break and here are some great shots of the Carnival Fantasy leaving Mobile and the Carnival Elation arriving to her new home.

More on our journey in a moment.

I don’t know much about supermodels except some of them should have the word “front” tattooed on their chests so we know they are the right way round. I know of Claudia Schiffer and the one with huge spot on the side of her lip….ummm…….can’t think of her name, then there is the world’s top male model Kate Moss. I do remember one from when I was a young lad though and her name was Twiggy. She used to be called that because she was skinny but compared to today’s models she would have been dragged off the catwalk and force fed a Big Mac.

These days Twiggy looks amazing and is a sure fire reminder that 60 is the new 40. Anyway, it seems that the uber luxurious Yachts of Seabourn would agree…..as you will see here.

Godmother release FINAL – 13 May 2010 (2)

Congratulations to Twiggy and to Seabourn and very soon I will begin my push to have Megan Fox as the Godmother of the Carnival Magic.

Talking of new ships the Nieuw Amsterdam left its berth at Fincantieri’s Marghera shipyard today to go through its first set of sea trials. She looks fabulous as you will see in this terrific video.

http://www.hollandamericablog.com/nieuwamsterdam/

I hope that during my vacation to be at the naming ceremony so I can share the experience with you all.

We have spent the last two days heading to Charleston where we will arrive on Tuesday morning. It has been a fun few days for the crew because between taking the opportunity of not having guests onboard to give the ship a thorough cleaning and to do maintenance jobs that are difficult with the ship in operation……….the crew has also been having fun.

We gave them a performance of the Ticket to Ride show as well as some laser tag fun, bingo and a party on lido deck. It is always fun to see these terrific young people letting their hair down and enjoying some time together. WARNING………GRUMPY ALERT …………….GRUMPY ALERT.

Me though……well I have been bored beyond compare and without guests here. I have given some jobs to Ugly Craig to have the staff do…….clean the library (it was in a pretty bad state) and the office and inventory some stuff and while they have been busy I have been trying to keep active. I managed to go to the gym and not be disturbed but apart from that I have been sitting here as bored as an Eye Phone salesman in an Amish community.

I wrote some more for my book and I now have 2 and a half chapters complete and it should be ready for publishing by 2099. I was so bored last night that I decided to go out to the Lido Deck and the crew party but I felt as out of place as a Frenchman in Bath and Body works……..so I buggered off realizing once again that while the crew are so nice to me, they think of me as some office chap here to make sure that they are not doing anything wrong. …………………yep………….I am Billy No Mates…………as we say in Essex.

Anyway, tomorrow I will be back to work and will stop being a grumpy old sod. So, tomorrow will be a busy day and I will be telling you all about it of course here on our blog thingy.

Well, we started today’s blog with me upsetting 3 guests with my “toilet humour” and as there are no guests onboard and therefore I have bugger all else to write about …..we might as well finish with some toilet humour. You see, the Carnival Fantasy was built back in the 1990’s and the CD cabin has not changed one sodding bit since Gary Hunter was the first CD here.

The walls are covered with a fake oak look veneer and with the early CD’s Gary Hunter, Eddie Capone, David Fee, Vance Palm and Greg Kneale having lived here before me …… the bed has seen more action than Lindsey Lohan’s and Paris Hilton’s combined.

The one thing I hate though is that there is a telephone in the bathroom. Now, I know that everyone here reading this has taken a poo break at work………..yes you have ………don’t say you haven’t because I know you have. It is a well-known fact that toilet breaks at work are undertaken so that you can catch up on reading, chill out for a while with an Eye Pod, finish a Saduko puzzle thingy or get a few rows of knitting done. Anything that interferes with these solitary pastimes is an outrage and should be banned.

Oh yes……..one last thing………….I have broken the little toe on my right foot. I know some of you will think I am a big baby but honestly…….bloody hell……. it hurts. I went to bed on Thursday night and it was throbbing and aching but I thought it would be better in the morning. It wasn’t and when I tried to put my shoe on the pain made me howl like a constipated wolf.

And so I reluctantly went down to the ship’s medical center……saw the Doc…… who said I had a broken toe. He said there was no treatment other than binding it to the next toe for stability, which he did.  But come on……….is this really all that can be done? It’s 2010 ….. and all the medical world can do is give it a bit of bondage with its neighbour.

Anyway, I am limping around the ship like Heather Mills generally feeling sorry for myself. How did I do it you might ask……………..here’s how.

Yep, I was doing the bedtime story and after Mary had tackled me to the floor and my shoe came off………she stood up by putting her entire weight on my little toe crushing the poor little thing and snapping the bone………..as you can see by the look of anguish and pain on my face on those last two photos.

Time to ask Mr. Cahill for a pay raise I think……..at least some danger money don’t you think?

Goodnight
Your friend
John

Hi, I’m John, and this is my blog. So please don’t mistake my opinions — or those of my dear friends, fans or commenters — for those of Carnival Cruise Line or Carnival Corporation. My apologies in advance for anything I may say that upsets you, but this disclaimer covers Carnival and puts the blame directly on me………….. bugger.