Human trawling

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“Hmmmmph. Sounds like a drag.”

~ The Pope on human trawling

“Boom! A cutting edge sport, and it cleans your barnacle buildup!”

~ John Madden on Shellfish

Unruly seamen have taken solace in the ASPCA's demands that fair but moderate punishments be meted out. Ever since such a declaration was made, sailors have done nothing but "flog their dolphins." There's no more whipping, no more starvation, and no more walkin' the plank. Stumped captains and pirates have no means of discipline. The clever ones have returned to a centuries-old form of corrections... human trawling.


In the beginning, there was the pirate ship Revenge, captained by the Dread Pirate Roberts. Behind his trademark long, flowing blonde hair and mask, Roberts was a ruthless and overbearing man. One fateful (dark and stormy) night, his third mate, first removed, on his mother's side, was keeping watch, when he was thrown overboard. A fast-thinking Roberts tossed a lifeline, specifically, to poll the audience. Alas, the line was too long and the mate too heavy. Until the winds abated, the crew on board could not pull in their companion. When they did, the most hated form of punishment ever to ominously grace any ship was born: the mangled body of the mate led to (jarring chord) human trawling!

Use Throughout History[edit]

While Roberts was technically not the inventor of human trawling, he was the first to realize its potential for keeping miscreant sailors in line. Samuel Taylor Coleridge, according to popular legend, would have included it in his critically acclaimed epic "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner," but it would have detracted from the role of the albatross. In the Roman Period, Pontius Pirate killed errant Jewish and Greek sailors through human trawling, by combining it with keelhauling. It should be noted that his boat was almost always barnacle-free; he is regarded as the most prolific trawler/keelhauler of all time. Blackbeard was not a large proponent of the practice, as he preferred quick and painless deaths by gunshot or syphilis.

Modern Human Trawling[edit]

Adventurous and impaired teenagers have recently taken to bottom-dragging. Human trawling's most common injury is actually finding starfish or other hazardous aquatic life in one's pants, because of that blasted ASPCA mandate, which outlawed death. It's also become a fad for soccer moms suffering from midlife crises, but without the financial means or insanity to purchase a sparkling new sports car. There is no word on whether the Extreme Olympics is considering Human Trawling as a sport for future competition.

Not to be Confused With...[edit]

  • Incompetent Water-Skiiers
  • Fishing for tuna, thereby killing innocent dolphins.
  • Underwater Basket Weaving
  • Undisclosed Mafia Activities
  • (This item has been removed by the United States Department of Homeland Security, and this channel will continue to be monitored.)
  • Other bottom-feeders, like the Kansas City Royals.