Carnival Century

August 17, 2011 -

John Heald

I would like you to see this e mail that I received from Tex, the brilliant CD on the Carnival Triumph. Here it is:


Sent: Tuesday, August 16, 2011 1:05 PM
Subject: Talent Show

Hey Gang-

Tomorrow night, Old Man Wiggle will be celebrating his 100th birthday. He’ll sign up for the Talent Show (he always does) and we need to put him last. When he’s finished with the act we’re going to sing Happy Birthday and present him with a cake. I would like to fire the green, gold and purple confetti when we finish the song. Same as we do for Big Easy.  If anyone has any questions, let me know.

Cruise Director, Carnival Triumph

Well first of all many thanks to Tex for organising this special event. I know Old Man Wiggle as I expect many of you do too and for those who don’t, I will be providing photos of the above celebration in a few days. He is a brilliant character and always takes part in the talent show and stands on stage, sings a song and…..well…..wiggles. He is full of spirit and life and how lucky we will all be if we get to be 100 and get to celebrate it on a Carnival ship surrounded by friends and family. He still lives with his family as well and that is so important. I hope if I live to be very old that Kye and her family will look after me. I have always promised myself that I would never do that to my parents and I intend to live out that promise. Funny isn’t it….they look after you ….. then you look after them.

Seeing Old Man Wiggle reach a hundred not out (that’s a cricket term, by the way) has made me think about my own old age and if Kye can’t look after Heidi and I, what will happen?  I hope I poop off before Heidi because without her or Ketut, there is no way I could look after myself. I don’t know how to cook, clean, operate a washing machine, change a spark plug or where the new roll of toilet paper comes from.

I also don’t want to go to the type of retirement home where you’re left to marinate in your own urine, while the “helpers” stand around texting their boyfriends, waiting for you to die but preferably not on their shift.  I am sure everyone here dreads ending their days in a stinky home for the nearly dead wearing someone else’s false teeth. If I am lucky enough to reach say……80 years of age I think I may hasten my departure.  Because if Kye says “Dada, we have found you a nice spot at The Sunshine Retirement Home,” I will start drinking again, smoking 20 cigars a day and eating nothing but animal fat and lard. Maybe we should have a have a happy hour for only those over age 75 where with pints of ThirstyFrog for $1 and let them smoke and have an hour of Frank Sinatra karaoke. You may spend the rest of the cruise in bed but that’s better than ending your days wasting away on a wipe down chair wearing a diaper. Anyway, congratulations to Old Man Wiggle and photos of his special day will follow.

Time for some Q and A………….here we go.

 Kris Brummett Asked:

We had a fabulous cruise on the Carnival Victory 6/26-7/3!   This was my third cruise with Carnival and I want to say for the first time I realized how hard the assistant cruise directors work. We had a fabulous CD in Karl with a K, but the assistant CD, Matt was phenomenal.  I won’t forget either of them. I also wanted to thank you for the kind gift sent to our room and thank Carnival for another wonderful cruising experience!


John Says:
Hello Kris Brummett

This is very important to mention Kris because you are absolutely correct when you say how hard the ACD’s work. I could never do my job without a strong ACD to help me. I will make sure both Karl and Matt get to see this and I am so glad you had fun. Thanks for taking the time to write.

Best wishes.

Lassiter Asked:

It seems to me and I am by the way someone who has been cruising for 18 years and have many with Carnival that your company is looking to be the bottom feeder in the industry. There is a big conversation on Cruise Critic about how Mr. Cahill is dumbing down Carnival and as I know how much you despise us Cruise Critic readers, I won’t waste my time putting the link on your blog. Hundreds of subscribers feel that with all the huge cuts that he is making that he is obviously turning the company into one that only wants blue collar workers and those who may not have high expectations. I am writing to you as the company’s ambassador which I understand is your title so I hope you will give me the respect of an honest answer and no some corporate clap trap and hot air.

John Says:
Hello Lassiter.

I will simply say this — what huge cuts? And the people we are trying to attract are people who want fun at the most affordable price in the vacation industry regardless of what colour their collar is. And for the last time let me be as clear as a polished piece of glass when I say I do not despise Cruise Critic but I am starting to despise the few that give a band name to the many. I hope that you will reply listing the cuts that you are talking about so we can discuss them. Please tell me what you are concerned with and I will help answer it, as honestly and as best I can.

Best wishes.

Brycen Edwards Asked:
In January I went on a cruise with my Dad’s office. Dad got sick and had to be disembarked. Well we paid around $2,500 before leaving the boat in medical expenses. I found out last week that the rest of our office was held on ship till they coughed up another $1,400 that the medical department forgot to charge us. While in this case it is hugely funny, if I had been traveling with friends I would be very upset to hear that it had happened. I think Carnival is going too far with their marine law in this case. The whole mess was a bit too far with marine law. Normally when you do this it is called kidnapping. However it was my Dad’s boss so I call it you should have kept the bloke and put him to work. 😛  I think Carnival should reconsider their policy in this situation. Not everyone is related to the rest of their travel party. It has needless to say left a sour taste in my mouth. I may reconsider traveling with Carnival in the future once my September cruise is done.

John Says:
Hello Brycen Edwards

I was very sorry to read about your father’s illness during the cruise and I hope that he is well now. Obviously I have no idea as to the circumstances and what insurance you had or did not have. However, I thank you for your email me and I will make sure that someone who will be in contact with you very soon. Once again I hope your father is doing better now.

Best wishes to all.

Linda Forshee Asked:
Hi John,

Just a quick question. We are going on the Carnival Ecstasy on the Oct 31 what night will they have the Halloween costume party. We were on it last year and it was a blast. See you Nov.14th in Galveston

John Says:
Hello Linda

Halloween has become a huge event at Carnival over the past few years and it will be again this year across the fleet. There will be the parade and all the usual events on the Carnival Ecstasy on the 31st and it will be literally……a scream. I wish you a brilliant time and hope to see you in Texas.

Best wishes.

James Keesler Asked:
We are taking our 17th Carnival cruise October 7 on Carnival Magic. We will be celebrating 30 years of marriage and also a birthday (78th) on this cruise.  We want it to be a cruise to remember. How about arranging something nice for us? Just to let us know that Carnival does indeed care about their loyal patrons. Guess you will not be the CD on this cruise. We were looking forward to sailing with you. Oh well, James should be fine. Oh we will be in cabin 1279.

John Says:
Hello James Keesler

We really do care about all our customers and I will be happy to send you something to celebrate. James will do a brilliant job and I am sorry I cannot be with you. Please leave a note at the guest service desk when you get onboard and there will be something delivered to your cabin. Have a brilliant time.

Best wishes.

Pixie56 Asked:
Like you, I am obese but I think I have grown to accept this and I think you should as well and you should stop putting yourself down and making fat jokes about yourself and just accept that you are what you are and that is obese. I think you will be much happier. I do have some questions John. I am worried about wanting to go down the slides on the Carnival Dream. Will I be able to and will I be able to keep a T-shirt on because I don’t have a bathing suit. I also need a table for two and chairs at dinner that has no arms, my DH also as we are both 350 pounds plus. My other question is that I heard that Carnival now delivers pizza to the cabins and I wanted to know if there was charge for this. We are so excited to be going on the cruise. It’s our first and the honeymoon we never had three years ago when we were married because of financial problems. Our cabin number for the cruise on Dream on 08/20/11 is 8341.

Thank you John

John Says:
Hello Pixie56

Let me start by saying thanks so much for your concern. I realise that my current weight is too much and I am on a diet and losing weight slowly and feeling good about myself that I am, thanks again for taking the time to think of me. I have asked the maitre d to request a table for two for you and we will have the chairs without arms. We do not deliver pizza to the cabins but it is available 24 hours on Lido deck 10. I think I already answered this question a few weeks ago now I come to think of it but if not I am glad I got to it before you cruise. I wish you both a brilliant time.

Best wishes.

Willis O. Asked:
Hey John,

Why is there only two cruise dates for the Panama Canal, and why can’t Carnival have a ship with balconies to sail through?

John Says:
Hello Willis O

There is no doubt that the Panama Canal cruises are really popular and every time we reposition a vessel from coast to coast, we try to do this. On this occasion it’s the Fantasy-class ships that are able to do this and they do indeed have limited balconies. We have also had the Spirit-class ships do the voyage and they of course have more balconies. The other ships are too big for the canal. Thanks Willis and I hope you get to experience the Panama Canal voyage soon.

Best wishes.

Karen Williams Asked:
Hello John,

I am booked to take the European 12 day cruise for October 2011. Since we are going to so many amazing locations, I wanted to have my passport stamped as a great way to have memories of the trip. How can I do that?

John Says:
Hello Karen Williams

The sad thing is that as we are going to mostly European Union countries they no longer have borders so there will be no need to show passports and therefore you can’t get it stamped. The only exception to this is if your cruise includes Dubrovnik, Croatia, which is not part of the EU and therefore they need to see everyone’s passport as you leave the ship and if you ask them they will for the most part, stamp it for you. I promise you a wonderful time.

Best wishes.

Rocca Asked:

Coming up on our seven Carnival cruise and have never had a table for two always with other passengers some nice some morons so now I think we deserve our table for two for the Carnival Imagination September 2, cabin E71.

John Says:
Hello Rocca

I have asked the maitre d on the Carnival Imagination to help you with this request and I hope you have a brilliant time on your seventh Carnival cruise. Best wishes to you both.


Wally Cronin Asked:
My family and I sailed on the Carnival Magic last week. Please thank the entire crew for the incredible trip we had. The ability to see the Coliseum, the Vatican, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, Pompeii, Monte Carlo and so much more while enjoying most of what the ship has to offer was a once in a lifetime opportunity. Especially worth mentioning were the cabin stewards for 10264, who did a wonderful job of keeping our room fresh and keeping us up to date on what was going on onboard. Our headwaiter Freddie and his staff were always there to serve and assist. Their food and wine suggestions were always on the mark. Alexandra did a fantastic job of making our kids feel special during the past guest’s reception. As for the ship’s amenities: The sky course was my 12-year-old son’s favorite. My daughter loved the poolside movies. My wife loved the general level of pampering she received. It’s a tossup between the RedFrog Pub and the cabin’s balcony for me. The RedFrog has a great atmosphere but there’s nothing quite like sipping a cold drink in the moonlight and watching the stars on the water. We had a marvelous time. Thank you again to the entire Magic crew for making it happens.

Wally Cronin

John Says:
Hello Wally Cronin

This is a great review and I thank you so much for taking the time to write to me. I promise to make sure everyone you mentioned gets to see this and I know they will be thrilled. I have no fears in saying that I think Carnival Magic is simply…….our best ship yet. My best wishes to you and your family.


That’s all for today.

Well just for a change it’s time to talk about food………oh FFS!

Let’s start with a request for the fantastic recipe we use here at the Cucina del Capitano for the spaghetti carbonara. Here it is.


 After all the concern and worry about the new menus it seems that for the most part they have been met with much praise and if not praise then understanding and an acceptance not to judge until tasted which is, of course, the sensible approach. But there has been a lot of praise as I said and some questions. One of those questions is about what menu is served on the Carnival Freedom and other ships that have eight-day cruises. So to answer that, here is the eight-day menu from the new rotation:



Now, let’s stop talking about food shall we and move onto what happened to me yesterday……. and it’s not very nice.

I had a terrible nightmare last night. I was in the hospital waiting room. The wind was gusting outside throwing heavy rain against the window. A gorgeous Latvian nurse had just left the room having told me that Doctor Longfinger was just checking a few things. She had done her best to look like nothing was wrong but I could tell something was. A large brass clock on the wall ticked away the seconds and the minutes.

Then suddenly the Doctor Longfinger appeared.

“Sorry to keep you waiting, Mr Heald,” said with an accent that was pure New York. He was carrying a large brown file with my name written on it and he didn’t look happy at all to see me.

His expression was a gloomy as the weather outside and I hoped that was because he was worried about the economy or if his wife would find out that he was having rumpy pumpy with the Latvian nurse. He was a large man himself, not fat like me but tall and wide and, well a little chubby and he had a sort of hunch………bloody hell, he looked like Calvyn.

He coughed nervously, never a good sign. “I just wanted to make sure I was seeing this correctly,” and as he said this he took a seat next to me.”I wish I had better news for you.”

I turned back to look at the rain thrashing against the window. “Mr. Heald, are you still with me?” asked Doc Longfinger.

I just didn’t know what to say so I turned to him and said the first thing I could think of, “Am I buggered, doc?”

With that Doctor Longfinger opened the brown file and pulled out an X-ray and pointing to a large object he said “It’s Pandalus Borealis Anus.” And with treatment it can be made bearable and with surgery there is a small possibility of survival. If you don’t have surgery…… then you will die.  It was hard to believe that this was it, the end of the road. I always imagined it would be something a bit bigger like a climbing wall landing on my head, or an angry Cruise Critic member having me whacked. But it wasn’t, it was Pandalus Borealis Anus.

I looked at Doctor Longfinger and trying to hold back the tears, I simply said, “What is Pandalus Borealis Anus?”

The doctor ran his fingers through his hair, removed his glasses, looked me in the eyes and said. “You’ve got a shrimp cocktail lodged up your arse.”

And that’s when I woke up……………..screaming.


Your friend

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68 Responses to Carnival Century

  1. Linda (Mom of DJ) says:


    Please tell “Old Man Wiggle” HAPPY BIRTHDAY from us. I have done several talent shows with him. He is DELIGHTFUL!!!

    Linda (Mom of DJ)

  2. Lassiter.

    I’m a retired blue coller worker and all I have to say to you is go crawl back under your snob rock.

  3. Jimmy says:

    John, as you may recall I was booked on Oct. 3, Elation on a trip to Calica and Cozumel, and had to cancel after my illness.

    My question is, as far as I can see, this is the last time any Carnival Ship is scheduled to go to Calica.

    I really enjoy Plya Del Carmen and it looks like now it is Progresso and Cozumel. Is Carnival considering sending any ships back to Calica in the future?

    As always, I appreciate your being willing to help.


  4. Beth Selinger says:

    hmmm I wonder how Dr. **Sigmoid Colon Freud would interpret that dream??

    **(The sigmoid colon (pelvic colon) is the part of the large intestine that is closest to the rectum and anus)

  5. Linda (Mom of DJ) says:


    I, too, am confused when I hear folks on Cruise Critic say how Carnival has cut back.

    The odd thing is…they never give any specifics.

    Yes, there have been changes since hubby started cruising in 1982 …. actually there have been changes the past 10 years.

    10 years ago, there was no deli. There was no mongolian grill. There was no roast chicken with all the trimmings out by the pool. There was no fishnchips, buritto bar or pasta bar. ALL for FREE!!

    10 years ago, there was no Karaoke. There was no Punchliner Comedy Club. There was no Adult Serenity Area. There was no Cloud 9

    10 years ago, we did not sail to Roatan, Aruba or Costa Maya.

    These are things that have been ADDED …..

    But then, the people who are complaining are probably the same people who never understood the fact that Carnival still gave away FREE DRINKS….they just moved it to another night. Guess that is their idea of a cut back????

    Linda (Mom of your friend DJ)

    • Tim Kriebel, MCPO, USN Retired says:

      Of course Dear, but then again, how could you see the cutbacks with your rose colored glasses on? Are you blind?

      • Linda (Mom of DJ) says:

        Tim: My rose colored glasses are better than your sh@t stained pampers….are you a child?

    • Victoria Ryder says:

      flat iron steaks are definately a cut back !

      The champagne at past guest and farewell parties now is a brand that should be called eu de toilet.

      Now if those aren’t cutbacks, I dont know what is.

  6. Tim Kriebel, MCPO, USN Retired says:

    Sicko joke!!!!!!! Actually not funny, so unlike you.

  7. Dennis Hanovich says:

    Loved Wally Cronin’s post. Nothing like a balcony on a Carnival ship.

  8. VickiW says:

    Long time reader, first time poster, CCL fan here… thank you for making a mess of my desk with that last tale. Foolishly, I took a sip of water just before scrolling down for the ending. Keyboard, monitor, desk and several important documents are now a little worse for wear. That said, I want to tell you I love reading your blog and your answers to oh so many questions. Fabulous. Please keep up the often irreverent, sometimes touching and always entertaining musings.

  9. Kay says:

    Oh NO! Not Pandalus Borealis Anus!

    LOL. I love you John and thanks for the laugh. I almost fell off my chair.

  10. Bob says:


    Just kidding…

    I think that happy hour you describe should be held every day for everybody, like real bars do. A dollar off your overpriced drinks once a week just doesn’t cut it.

    I sure hope I never get sick on the ship. I understand they don’t even give out the seasick pills anymore, much less demand payments from anyone and everyone you might have a relationship of some sort with. What a crock.

    Can us 350 pound people go down the slide? I’ve never asked and never done it, but would love to.

    • BarB says:

      The best way to protect yourself from actually having to PAY for medical treatment on a ship….or any other travel destination is TRAVEL INSURANCE. If you choose to avoid paying for insurance, be prepared to pay all the bills you accrue.

      There’s no such thing as a free lunch. Would you go to your doctor expecting treatment and then complain because you have to pay? Of course not.

      Carnival has a drink of the day…..every day….at a reduced price. If you choose to drink something other than that reduced price daily special, expect to pay for full price.

      Carnival isn’t a charitable organization. It’s a business….and profit is their bottom line.

      They provide a wonderful cruise at the lowest prices…. If you want a bunch of freebies, try a luxury cruise….they have lots of perks…at 3/4 times the price.

      • Steven says:

        Sorry BarB… that doesn’t make sense… 3/4 times the price would be CHEAPER…

        1000 x 3/4 = 750…

    • J.R. says:

      im 350 and I have gone down the slide many times lots of fun and a big splash

  11. Steve Inglis says:

    John your nightmare reminds me of a story going around about a recruit who went AWOL.
    Day 1 of recruit training he recieved an amenities package inc shampoo etc.
    Day 2 he went to the barber who shaved off all his hair!!
    Day 3 He recieved a toothbrush.
    Day 4 saw him attend the Dentist who pulled out most of his teeth.
    Day 5 he recieved a truss.
    Dsy 6 he was reported missing and has not been seem since!!!!

  12. Jennifer Freeman says:

    Hello John, I am a huge fan of your blog and make it a point to read it every night after my long, hard day working in a local nursing home. I wanted to assure you that not all nursing home “helpers” leave you to marinate in your own urine. I am a supervisor in a nursing home and, although the term “nursing home” or “retirement home” as you call it has a bad name, not all nursing homes are bad. I am proud to work in a nursing home, caring for those who can no longer care for themselves. Not everyone has family that can care for them when they can no longer care for themselves. Although I am slightly offended by your comments in today’s blog, I still love you, John and Carnival of course. Planning cruise number 7 with Carnival sometime in early 2012 but not sure where yet.

    • Mike Tomlinson says:


      I agree that John was just being funny. Like with anything, there are good ones and bad ones. It is just that the bad ones are the ones you hear the stories about. My late mother-in-law had to have 24/7 care so we had to place her in a nursing home. My late wife would go to the nursing home on a daily basis to visit her mother. We were lucky that it was very close to our house. My late wife was a real estate agent so she would go to the nursing homes at different times from day to day and she rarely encountered her mother not being properly cared for. If and when she did it was always a new person who had been hired. My wife would just have a small talk with the supervisor if there was ever an issue and it would be handled. People who are able to handle working in a nuring home should be regarded very highly for doing a job that most people could not handle. Thanks for being one of those people.

      Mike Tomlinson

    • Jacqueline says:

      Jennifer, cant you see a joke when you read one?

  13. Rita presnell says:

    To ca…the only thing you DESERVE is a slap up the side of head. You are rude and crude and need to learn how to ASK for a favor, not DEMAND!!!!!!

  14. Jeanette says:

    Oh dear, that dream sounds dreadful. I certainly hope it wasn’t a jumbo shrip cocktail….


  15. JR says:

    Dear John,

    You are a very sick man. Your sense of humour is killing me. You had me crying with laughter with the shrimp cocktail in your arse. I remembering on the two occasions that I am in the doctors office waiting on him to tell me the results of my cancer test. Both times I did have cancer but am recovering. I also experience this with my wife who is recovering from cancer now. You had me going and with that punch line I am laughing outloud and crying at the same time.
    Thanks a million for your humour it made my day a lot brighter.

    God Bless,
    Miss Emily says hi from the back forty.

  16. flintg says:

    Maybe we should have a have a happy hour for only those over age 75 where with pints of ThirstyFrog for $1

    Now THAT is a perk that should be followed up on! After a sufficient number of Thirsty Frogs we could discuss the pitfalls of Pandalus Borealis Anus!

  17. Ryan Sensenig says:

    LOL! I absolutely love the nightmare. I would have a nightmare to if I was subjected to all the crap about the shrimp cocktail. In fact, just after reading the Cruise Critic forums last night, I was walking to work today and everybody I walked by looked like a cocktail shrimp carrying bags or backpacks of cocktail sauce. When I went to happy hour later in the evening, I purposely avoided the shrimp and seafood section of the appetizer menu.

    I hope I never become contracted with Pandalus Borealis Anus. What are the chances of contracting that during my cruise this November? Can you tell me?

  18. Christina says:

    Now thats taking your work home with you for sure! LOL

  19. Ally Jones says:

    Following all night negotiations tween Carnival & the leader of the Crustcean Union, Mr Pinky Prawn, it has been announced that the Tiger Prawns have now joined the shrimps & lobsters in an all out strike.

    The latest development comes after several shrimp were manhandled by security outside the galley aboard Carnival Shrimp last night. The chef, Ivor Biggun, allegedly grabbed a shrimp by its tail and threatened to drown it in 357 sauce to teach it a lesson. The Tiger Prawns with the help of several lobsters pounced on Ivor Biggun, held him down and slapped him around the face with wet lettuce leaves until he released the distressed shrimp from his grasp.

    The current condition of the shrimp victim is not known although Mr Pinky Prawn hopes that his injuries are not life threatening. The shrimp’s next of kin have been informed and the local police have been informed.

    In other developements, it has been revealed that the boss of Carnival is about to abseil down onto Carnival Shrimp to take over from the now completely insane CD, John Heald, who has been made into a shivering wreck since the Shrimpgate situation started a few days ago…..more details later today…

    • Linda says:

      That was too funny… get a big thumbs up from me

      • Ally Jones says:

        Latest reports from the Carnival Shrimp where protests by passengers over the removal of the shrimp cocktails have caused all out strikes by shrimps, lobsters & tiger prawns has taken a tragic step tonight.

        The shrimp that had been attacked by chef, Ivor Biggun, has died of its injuries. Ivor Biggun has been charged with assault & battery & actual bodily harm leading to the death of the shrimp this afternoon.

        .Mr Pinky Prawn, leader of the Crustacean Union expressed his deep sympathy to the shrimp’s family & friends saying that the chef would have no mercy shown to him at his trial and that as a result of this slaughter of an innocent shrimp, the cockyails are definitely off the menu for the foreseeable future.

        The boss of Carnival who abseiled down to Carnival Shrimp this afternoon was not available for contact, the now straight jacketed CD, John Heald, was under sedation in his cabin being cared for by Ketut. The negotiations are tween the sides are frozen as a mark of respect to the brave little shrimp who died fighting his corner this afternoon..

        • Ally Jones says:

          The standoff tween Carnival, the Crustacean Union and the Carnival Shrimp passengers is continuing this morning.

          Following the ugly scenes a few nights ago, passengers are still not happy at the loss of their beloved shrimp cocktails, many have told reporters that the end of the world would have been easier to accept than the loss of their cocktails.

          Meanwhile the funeral of the shrimp that was murdered by Ivor Biggun has taken place. The young shrimp, known as Titch, was held by moonlight and at sea with full battle honours. Sobbing & wailing shrimps, lobsters & tiger prawns could be heard long into the night.

          A new development overnight has stated that the beleaguered and totally potty CD, John Heald, has been removed from the ship after hallucinating, he apparently thought Ketut was a shrimp & tried to strangle him. Ketut is reported to be shocked but unhurt after the incident…

          • Ally Jones says:

            Negotiations are still ongoing tonight aboard Carnival Shrimp. The boss of the cruise line has sent out for his prawn cocktail flavoured Pringles, reportedly saying that he is in for the long trawl with Mr Pinky Prawn, leader of the Crustacean Union.

            The passengers are currently polishing off the 8th day menu (since the 5,6 & 7 day menu’s have been boycotted)…no-one told them, however, that the 8th day is the same as the 7th and the main courses are all variations on Spam with the option of jacket spud or fries or prawn cocktail Pringles.

            It has also been confirmed the crabs, who have been itiching to join the fracas, have now downed pincers and are currently marching sideways towards the galley to join the picket lines.

            The Legends show tonight will be featuring a lobster serenading a tiger prawn in a full Elvis costume singing Song of the Shrimp…

    • Suzanne says:

      OMG, too funny! Thanks for the laugh 🙂

    • BIG MIKE RHONE says:

      Love It, Love It!!! What a Writer!!!!

  20. Jacqueline says:

    Lassiter, you seriously need to get your life back and get out of that dark room with you keyboard. I read that thread and its full of no life whiners who have really nothing to say or usefull comments. Because of the likes of you Cruise Critic is no longer of interest to many people, which is really a shame.

    John, tnx so much for the laugh, I wil be your groupie/stalker/whatever on the Magic, same for Ken, what a brilliant singer!. Irish always have that “kind of Magic” .
    Dont ever doubt your sense of humour is too much. Have a shrimp day!

  21. amy katzenberger says:

    I have to wonder, why are there so many people on Cruise Critic that lack the ability to a) think for themselves and b) think they are sooooooo special because they are Cruise Critic members.
    I am a CC member, but I didn’t know that once I joined this massive, super informational, FREE, glorified TRAVEL BLOG and social networking site….that the heavens were supposed to open and I was suddenly special, and entitled.

    If some of these wise asses would take half the time they spent concocting these asinine remarks and questions to email….and actually do a little digging on their own, instead of relying on mis-information from the CC Troll & Curmudgeon Department, they might see just how silly they look. I imagine John, brilliant man that he is, sitting at his desk, in his underpants, hand to forehead, muttering ‘OH FFS’ over and over and over.

    Bottom line, while I’m sure the entire cruise industry appreciates Cruise Critic, some of you need to GET THE EFF OVER YOURSELVES. If you love RCI so much, take your happy arse on back there. Oh, but can you afford to? hmmm…that’s another issue.

    Stop slinging mud and let your money do the talking. That will just be room for someone else to hop aboard a Carnival FUN SHIP and have a BRILLIANT, FANTABULOUS, FUN FILLED TIME.

  22. Bonnie says:

    OMG John – you are a stitch! I have to stop reading your blog at work as I will invariably burst out in laughter. I work midnights, and it is a true pick-me-up at 5 in the morning. Just enough to get me through the night. Happy Birthday to Mr. Wiggles. Also, did you know that it is cheaper to book yourself on a Carnival cruisen than pay for a nursing home??? Something to think about. Your meals are taken care of, there is someone cleaning your room, and you wake up in a different place every day. And if you have been there before, chances are, you won’t remember anyway. Love ya, John.

  23. Melissa Jurgensen says:

    For those with food allergies (myself and my mother) the day 8 menu is disappointing! I see us skipping the MDR that night. Can’t eat chicken or seafood OR the mushrooms in the vegetarian lasagna. What gives CCL? Cheapening the menu.

    • Suzanne says:

      I guess I’m failing to see how your allergies are “cheapening” Carnival? Lots of people have food allergies and manage to still eat. I bet, if you asked nicely and POLITELY (operative word there), the kitchen would be happy to work with you to make items you can eat and will enjoy. Please and thank you will go a long way toward this.

    • Janet says:

      Have you ever contacted Carnival and talked to them about your food allergies? I’ve read many postive reviews from those that have. A menu to fit your allergies will be worked out and made just for you. If you haven’t done so give it a try before giving up eating in the MDR for dinner. Good Luck and happy cruising!

    • Cindy Lecomte says:

      anyone with food allergies should let Carnival know and they will assist with your meal planning to suite you.

  24. Dutchman says:

    Well John, you had your warning, bring back the shrimp cocktail. Your next dream you may be swimming with the shrimp. Have some great cruises hope the bitch fairy stays away from you for a few cruises. Just think you could have a cruise with all russians and French, WOW that would be interesting

  25. jgeraci says:

    I am so lucky that I don’t have to worry about getting put in a “Home” when I can no longer care for myself. My daughter has graciously offered to save one of her dog kennels for me!

    I hope Mr. Wiggles has a great birthday! Maybe someday I can celebrate my 100th b-day on a Carnival ship (if my daughter will let me out of the kennel).

    • jgeraci says:

      I forgot to tell you that I don’t do Facebook, so could you put me down as a YES for the shrimp cocktail?

  26. Peter B says:

    Re Lassiter Asked:

    I’ve seen the thread and it looks like maybe 25 different posters, a long way from “Hundreds of subscribers”. And not all the posters agree with you.

    Wish Cruise Critc folks could get their facts right once in awhile.

  27. Joseph Henry says:

    Please do not be concerned with the comments like those from Mr. Lassiter above. I am sure you do not spend as much time on Cruise Critic as I do, but I can tell you there are many more favorable comments about Carnival than negative ones. There are legitimate concerns of course – Cruise Critic would not be of value without them. But most still feel Carnival returns excellent value for the cost.

    • Darren says:

      Mr Lasiter…I heard they are also replacing the beds on CCL with deck chairs…bringing back Fruit punch…and instead of Shrimp CCL will now be serving 1lb Lobster cocktails.

      I am a Cruise Critic member and do not feel “entilted” to anything…I don`t believe everything I read…I have my own mind/opinions…I love sailing Carnival…I don`t see the “cutbacks”(except less staff…but what company hasn`t in this economy)….

      Get a life…


  28. Michael says:

    I have had the pleasure of being on five sailing with Mr. Wiggle on three different Carnival ships. He is wonderful gentleman, always with a smile on his face and a kind word to everyone he sees. John, I see that your “troll” screener is not working, maybe it needs a tune-up. ☺

  29. Kathy T says:

    Hello John, (Please reply)
    We are long time Princess cruisers who decided to sail on the Fantasy out of Charleston next April. We can drive to the port and are taking our grandchildren with us. We are so excited! When people ask us about what to do on Princess we always say to be sure to go to tea at least one day. What experience should we be sure not to miss on our Carnival Fantasy trip? It can be anything, on or off the ship but what should not be missed that would define the “carnival experience”?
    Thank you so much.

  30. JOEYG says:


  31. BarB says:


    As a former member of Cruise Critic…for 4 years, I can attest to the amateurish posts on that forum….and the reason I dropped my membership.

    It used to be a great place to go for information on many things, good questions, good information…espcially for newbies.

    It has turned into a gigantic complainers forum. Filled with misinformation, rumors, whiners and inexperienced travelers, it is nothing more than tabloid now.

    And, I doubt your cruise experience…. Anyone who has cruised that many times wouldn’t make the statements you did.

    I’ve been cruising Carnival since their 2nd cruise on their first ship, the Mardi Gras…and still manage at least one a year on their ships…. Used to be more frequent before retiring.

    There have been many changes in the cruise industry, cruise companies in general. When I started cruising, less than 1% of the USA had ever stepped on a ship. However, what has NOT changed is the Carnival experience. It’s the best bang for the buck. They offer the lowest rates in the industry and the best experience for the money.

    You folk on Cruise Critic are a whole new breed who expect everything to be exactly what you want, who complain about everything, who hassle the Guest Services onboard because your ice bucket wasn;t filled or a port was missed.

    You want compensation for everything, from an overcooked steak (which could be returned, a new one brought to you) to a complete refund because weather conditions caused you to miss a port.

    You are the babies of the traveling public…and I’ve seen you all over the world.

    There’s a reason we’ve been called “ugly Americans”……..

  32. Cruzin 1025 says:

    Thanks John for the 8th day menu! Looking forward to our first 8 day cruise next month!

  33. Starr Willaman says:

    Great Blog John, I am sorry about the dream (nightmare), funny that it was I hope the spiny teeth do not cause you much pain coming out….
    As for Carnival and change I look at the changes over the years I have worked for the travel industry and I applaud you. You have added so many avenues for fun and the Lasiter person can’t use their own name…has to see that if you open a cookbook today compared to one in the 60’s food has changed. You are ok in my book.

    Please wish Old Man Wiggles a very happy birthday from Ohio.

  34. Don T says:

    I just wanted to say after requesting help here, Marian Gobeaja, the Maitre D on the Victory has gone above and beyond the call of duty to help me out with a special occasion. A few years ago I married my wife in Key West while ashore from the Carnival Destiny and every cruise we take with you guys reminds us why it is such a great vacation choice. Thank you so much.

  35. teresa says:

    Mu daughter and I just booked the BLogger’s cruise March 4. I am looking forward to hearing all of your great stories in person

  36. Brenda Blackard says:

    oh my goodness…Old Man Wiggle…if you ever cruise out of New Orleans ask if he’s on the cruise and be sure and meet him. Many years ago I was cruising alone–which I do once or twice a year (it is all about me!) and sat at his table. What a blast! everyone stops by and at the end of the cruise he presented all the girls a booklet with recipes and stories, and pictures he had taken of all us at the table—it was one of my best cruises. He was in the talent show and said his talent was being 95!!
    thanks old man Wiggles—hope I cruise with u again!!

    BB from Virginia

  37. Heather Price says:

    I say Carnival needs to pull a prank on everyone and pass out menus that the only thing listed on it is Shrimp Cocktail and Ribs. I would love to see what everyones reaction would be then!!! LOL.., :0)

  38. Roger Tollerud says:

    Lassiter is a fool or a troll or both. My wife and I are just back from our 39th CCL cruise. This time on the Spirit and it was in every regard SPECTACULAR!!! Meals, entertainment, service and of course the wonderful Crew–many who have becomes friends over the years.
    Your “buddy” Gerry gets a bad rap and for the life of me I don’t know why.
    Roger T

  39. Linda says:

    I really think something should have been said to the parents with the screaming baby in the showroom. An employee should have spoken to them so the others in the showroom wern’t driven crazy. A passenger shouldn’t of had to say something. This is the job of Carnival employees. What planet were these parents from?

  40. Victoria Ryder says:

    yay for old man wiggles, bless his heart. How great he can still enjoy life !
    My dad lived til 92. but the last 2 yrs of his life he really couldnt do much.

  41. Melissa says:

    I was just wondering what cruises you will be on in Jan-Mar 2012. We had you for a cruise director back in 2004 in the Western Caribbean and had an absolute blast!!!! We are looking to book one for that time to celebrate our 20th anniversary and my 40th birthday!!!!

    • deb says:

      I guess some people’s tastes are bigger than their pocketbooks. They want an economical cruise, but expect gourmet food and luxury…. The fact is, things cost more today than they did years ago, you can go up on prices tremendously or cut where needed to keep it affordable. If we’re willing to pay more to get more, go somewhere else is my opinion. If we’re not, then we should stop complaining.

  42. Tammy H says:

    Hi John, just got home from a wonderful cruise on the Triumph (8/15) out of New Orleans, we had a great time. The ship didn’t leave New Orleans until after 9pm due to mechanical difficulties and we were impressed how the Captain (Angelo Los) was able to make up the time and still get us to Progresso (only 1 hour later than scheduled)
    I was humbly honored to be there for Old Man Wiggles 100th birthday celebration, that was so nice of Carnival to do for him, CD Tex was so nice and he was so entertaining too!
    I wanted to give thanks to a few of the Outstanding crew members we were lucky enough to meet, first we LOVED Lucia Grigerova who was the best bartender and a joy to chat with each night in the California Wine Bar, we met a wonderful cocktail waitress in the Club Rio, Rujira Sriboran, she always had a smile and remebered what we liked, and at the Vienna Cafe, Iryna Yakubouskaya was so nice and got to know our habits as well, waving at us if we passed by. Everyone was great, these three just stood out and went above and beyond for us, please let them know how much we appreciated meeting them! This was my 4th Carnival cruise, my husband and son’s 2nd and we are looking forward to sailing again with Carnival, hopefully the Magic now that it will be sailing from our home port of Galveston! Best wishes and keep up this wonderful and funny blog, I truly enjoy reading it!

  43. Denise Hagemann says:

    Hello John, I was just reading your blog about the cigars under the stars on the Legend. We will be sailing on the Miracle 10/17/11 (our lucky #13th cruise with Carnival) and was hoping that there is a cigars under the stars planned. Both my husband and brother who is traveling with us enjoy a good cigar in the evening.

    Thank you and I look forward to hearing from you. (44 days to go)


  44. Denise H says:

    Hello John, I was just reading your blog about the cigars under the stars on the Legend. We will be sailing on the Miracle 10/17/11 (our lucky #13th cruise with Carnival) and was hoping that there is a cigars under the stars planned. Both my husband and brother who is traveling with us enjoy a good cigar in the evening.

    Thank you and I look forward to hearing from you. (42 days to go)



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