For hundreds if not thousands of years, fishermen and seafaring folk have had superstitions. Deadliest Catch captain Sig Hansen is no different.
Look, when you have a difficult and sometimes deadly job superstitions can help make things easier. So, it isn’t a surprise that the boats and the crews out on the Bering Sea abide by certain habits and rituals.
Hansen talked with Fishing.net out of New Zealand about superstitions and the like. When the show first started, the TV crews had some learning to do. The Deadliest Catch captain talked about suitcases being an issue onboard.
“The superstitions have always been there, but they are not going to stop us from fishing,” he explained. “It’s more of a thing you do for bar-talk or to make conversation. Not leaving port on a Friday is one superstition, and the one about suitcases we take seriously. The first camera crew tried to take a bunch of suitcases on board, but we refused, so they had to unpack everything onto the boat and leave the suitcases on the dock.”
The suitcase superstition has roots that go far back. Some folks only ban black bags, but in general sailors and fishermen are wary of all luggage. Black is the color of death, and also represents the chilly depths of the sea should one be unfortunate enough to fall in. And don’t even think about bringing a banana onto a boat.
Crews on the sea will tell themselves anything to make the conditions more bearable and to feel a little bit of comfort.
Bearing Sea Weather Extreme, But Show is Made for TV
Sig Hansen also talked about the weather in the same interview. The weather is a big topic for these crews and captains. The sea is their office and the weather is part of that equation. No matter what comes their way, crabs have to be caught and brought to port.
For Hansen, he isn’t as concerned with the weather as one might think.
“Everything they film is accurate, but you will see a lot of the more foul weather as opposed to the calm days; I suppose that’s what sells, but the bad weather is a reality,” the captain explained.
That is a far different answer than what his fellow captain had to say. According to Keith Colburn, the Deadliest Catch crews are “Getting our asses handed to us.”
‘Deadliest Catch’ Captains Differ on Weather Changes
If you ask Keith Colburn, the weather has only gotten worse during his career. For the last 25 years, he has been at the helm of a boat. Since then, he has noticed that the storms are becoming more frequent. They are also getting harsher. While the crabs keep filling pots, he says it is noticeable.
“But the weather, anybody that doesn’t think climate change exists. Guess what? It exists,” he said. “Yeah, we’re getting our asses handed to us, and every year it gets worse and worse and worse.”
A topic for debate among Deadliest Catch captains.