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Jan 2, 2010

Forum – The Titanic

Issue – The deck chairs should be rearranged

Explanation – There are a number of problems with the way the deck chairs have been arranged, many of which have been brought up by passengers on more than one occasion. Despite us calmly and continuously explaining why the deck chairs must be rearranged, crew members have not listened to our demands. Instead, they barely take the time engage on these serious long-standing issues, preferring to just Kramer into our cabins shouting things like “please for God’s sake make your way to the deck if you want to live,” and “women and children first.” Suffice it to say, these paltry attempts to distract us have been as frustrating as they have been unsuccessful.

Part of the problem is that we have been receiving a lot of contradictory information re: the Iceberg Situation. First, the crew tells us they don’t like the iceberg and don’t want to steer into it, then the captain tells us that nobody told him about the iceberg, then all of a sudden, we’re supposed to believe that we’re sinking beneath the frigid waves and if we don’t follow the captain’s orders we’re all going to drown, and you want us to just forget about the deck chairs? Sorry, it doesn’t work that way. If you want trust, you have to earn it, and every step of this fiasco has been a textbook case in how to mismanage community concerns. We were calling out problems with the deck chairs long before this iceberg thing ever happened, and frankly, the attempt to combine the two sets of issues is a transparent attempt to deflect from our reasonable demands.

In case you haven’t noticed, there are less and less people on the ship. It’s pretty obvious that the reason for this is that passengers are unsatisfied with the way the deck chairs are arranged and the lack of transparency about which chair goes where. With a crew as large as this one, it shouldn’t take hours for someone to clarify why the three chairs which have been in the shade of the smoke stacks for over two weeks could not be moved to a sunnier spot. News flash: we’re practically in the Arctic. That means it’s cold! How hard can it be to move them? There’s no good reason why this hasn’t been done.

At this point it’s clear that major changes in leadership are needed. Just for a start, we should appoint two new crew members to liaison with the community about the deck chairs so we can understand why chairs are relocated with no rhyme or reason. “To clear a path for fleeing passengers” is just not good enough. Also, while we’re on this topic, we would like to make sure that no passengers are going to face any consequences for frantically pushing other people out of the way and trampling on their bodies. If we really do only have “a short time before we are engulfed in the icy tomb of the North Atlantic,” you can hardly blame them for telling people to gently caress off.

It is way past time for the crew to take responsibility and listen to the people they’re supposed to serve. After all, for a lot of us, the Titanic is a major source of support and a place where we’ve really started to develop a community around shared ideas about political praxis. You might even call the Titanic our “lifeboat.” It would be a real shame to see that community destroyed by a lack of transparency from the crew. We need to know what the crew knew, and when.

I’m sure the crew loves the Titanic just as much as we do, but the simple fact is they’ve been showing their whole rear end each and every time they’ve tried to address this problem. If want this ship to keep on sailing for many years, we need to rearrange the deck chairs. This will stop passengers from leaving the ship and will probably even encourage new passengers to get on board. Thanks for your time. We hope this can be resolved shortly.

Examples of the issue
  • The orange chair is the most popular chair on the deck. It just makes sense to move it to the first row so that people can see it better. It is a very comfortable chair but where it’s located right now, most people can’t see it.
  • Three chairs are in the shade of the smoke stack (see “explanation”).
  • The Deck Rules state that you can’t “save” a chair, but that means if you get up to go to the bathroom, you might have to sit in a different chair when you return. This is unacceptable. Change the rules to allow for “fives” to be called. If necessary, appoint a crew member to stand on deck and take notes on who has called fives, and to start a timer when anyone does it.
  • Just recently, we have noticed that some of the chairs are beginning to become waterlogged.
    a) Appoint a crew member to move these chairs to a less wet location.
    b) Appoint a crew member to investigate how these chairs became waterlogged and who is to blame.
    c) De-crew any crew responsible for the waterlogged chairs.



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