Do you ever wonder why some lobster boat names sound so pretty such as Shannon Lee and others get comical names such as Money Pit?
According to Christine LeMieux Oragano, the author of How To Catch a Lobster in Downeast Maine, who comes from a lobstering family in Cutler, Maine, “roughly 60 percent of Downeast lobster boats have a female name. Further research, via surveys, showed that most often a lobsterman names his boat after his wife.”
That’s no surprise given that feminine names have applied to vessels for centuries. By and large, the female names almost always have a personal connection to the lobsterman and his family. In the comment section to Oragano’s original article, one poster named Beth wrote “My husband's boat is (named) Beth Said Yes - because I finally agreed it was time for a new boat!”
While the tradition of naming boats after a wife or a daughter seems to linger, one Down East magazine article claims that the trend is starting to turn.
Linguist Michael Erard consulted both the National Marine Fisheries Service and the organizer of the Maine Lobster Boat Races who is also a maritime historian and found in his unique research that of the 1,300 boats that had registered for the race since 1999, female names made up fewer than half. He discovered quite a few categories including nautical (Isle of Sky), sardonically financial (Desperate Measure), tough-guy names (Hooligan), variations on a theme (Sea Bass, Sea Dancer), native-wit (Keepah), self-deprecating jokey names (Clam Killer) and clever puns (What The Haul), among many others.
Q106.5 decided to come up with their own list of the best lobster boat names in 2018 this past summer. Here they are, in order of popularity:
What are some lobster boats names you’ve seen that will always stick with you?
For more fun facts and lobster lore from the Maine Lobster Festival, visit www.mainelobsterfestival.com.
Blog and photo republished courtesy of Maine Lobster Festival
The Go Go Lobster Girls
Blessed again this year with great weather and excellent spirits (both the human kind and the kind that fits in a cooler), the flotilla had the best seat in the house to watch the Lobster Boat Races in Rockland on Father's Day, June 19. This floating block party was all about friends getting together, water balloon fights, dancing and grilling out.
We only had two mishaps this year. It was so choppy on the water that the flotilla of lobster boats began to squeeze too tightly against one another and in trying to physically push them apart at one point, two of the windows got smashed on the total Total Eclipse.
As many followers of this blog know, Ryan Post's iconic lobster boat, The Instigator perished in a freak spring storm, tossed up on the rocks. His new boat, Tall Tails, replaced The Instigator as the starting boat this year. And the second "incident" was the water balloon fight. Okay, so some of us threw water balloons at Tall Tails as it passed by, but that DID NOT give them the right to swing by again and douse us head to toe with the boat's hose. Damn you Ryan!
My friend Ryan was dealt an incredible blow this week. His iconic boat, The Instigator, ripped from its mooring during the April 17 storm in 50-60 mile winds and "was chewed to death on granite teeth" up on the rocks.
The boat is a total loss. According to Ryan, "No boat that has gone onto those jagged pieces of granite has ever floated again."
This is nor ordinary fishing vessel. It represents his brand "Maine Buggin" and is the face of the Midcoast Lobster Races. True to his optimistic nature, however, he is not upset--and is already in talks with procuring another vessel in North Carolina.
"I'm going to make a positive out of a negative," he said. "That's all you can do."
As per custom, any boat he purchases can never be renamed "Instigator"--it's bad luck.
Story originally reported by Lynda Clancy, Village Soup.
A Day in the Life of Maine Lobster Boat Racing
Columns and news about the subculture of Maine lobstering.