IF Fish Could Talk

Admiral R. Future

Hello Mr. and Mrs. Human Being

Thank you for allowing me to speak to your species today. Before I begin, I want you to know that on behalf of the millions of marine species in the oceans – we are not pleased with your species. You should also know the oceans represent 70 percent of this planet. Every breath you take, every food you eat, every weather system that you experience, everything in your life – is connected to our oceans. WE can live without YOU, but YOU cannot live without US…and time is seriously running out for ALL of us, and the future of our planet.  

Admiral R. Future



INTRODUCTION and Synopsis of My “If Fish Could Talk” Professional Speaking Presentations in 2014.

I am not a scientist, marine biologist, lobbyist, employee, or researcher. I am just a simple sailor. A simple sailor who has navigated over 100,000 nautical miles in her lifetime – many single-handed. A sailor who is passionate about the ocean. The ocean is my home.

So why should you pay attention to ME?

Because, cruising sailors see things and places along the world’s coastline that most people on our planet don’t know exist. We generally sail very slowly and venture into coastal villages and communities that are ignored or bypassed by most people in the world – as tourists, researchers, mega-yachts, or freighters. I believe that I ran my last marathon faster that my boat sails, and most of my cruising is coastal. (Most recently along the shores of western Canada, Unites States, South and Central America, and many unique islands along the route (Galapagos, Cocos, Las Perlas in Panama and many more.)

My love for the oceans and the unique cruising lifestyle began in the early 1980’s when my former husband Michael and I had a yearning desire to sail around the world. Our children, Sam and Charlie were ages 10 and 4 respectively, and after taking numerous courses and extensive preparation we set sail from British Columbia, Canada on a 2.5 year voyage that would change my life forever. Our 35,000 nautical mile voyage took us throughout the exquisite islands of the South Pacific Ocean to New Zealand and north to Japan – at a time when there was no GPS; rather, sails and a sextant were our only navigation tools.

I fell in love during this voyage. I fell in love with stunning sunrises and sunsets. I fell in love with snorkeling through brilliantly coloured coral reefs with an abundance of fascinating tropical fish. I fell in love with having the ability to catch our daily sustenance and exist primarily off the land and sea. I fell in love with sailing through pristine tropical islands surrounded by clear turquoise oceans with depths as far as the eye could see. I fell in love with the cruising lifestyle whereby one can take their family and small home anywhere in the world that’s attached to the ocean and live in these remote communities; eat their food, and enjoy their customs and culture.

Upon our return to Canada in 1989, I vowed that we would raise our children wholeheartedly, and enjoy traditional lifestyles; however, we would also strive to earn enough money to once again return to cruising on the ocean. The sea beckoned, and I could never let go.

Fast forward 30 years. Sam and Charlie became terrific young adults and married to wonderful daughters-in-law. I rode an outstanding wave in my career in the investment business in the ‘90s and retired in 2001. Sadly, I was no longer married; however, in my divorce settlement I was able to hang on to one bright glimmer of hope that represented a positive future: I got the boat!

Precious Metal is a luxurious steel, 47 foot custom-design cutter rig built in 1999 to sail anywhere in the world. She could have been called “Wish List” because I had inscribed a wish list in the back of my Log Book from the South Pacific voyage that included all of her exclusive amenities including: bathtub, wash and dryer, walk-in engine room with a full size work bench, cherry wood interior, and the best sails and rigging that money could buy.

In spite of my divorce, and my 50th year being the darkest of my life, I was determined to follow my dream of “sailing off into the sunset” and return to the cruising lifestyle that I once loved so intoxicatingly. In 2008, accompanied by my little dog Riley, we set sail on a 5 year, 25,000 ocean adventure of a lifetime: down the west coast of United States, Mexico, South and Central America, Panama and Galapagos.

Happy World Oceans Day

June 8:  The Most Important Day Of The Year For Humanity

World Oceans Day Action

Today is the day to celebrate our oceans and marine life – the heart and lungs of our planet that is now struggling so hard to stay alive because of the recent degradation by humans.

We should all just try to do one thing today in honour of our oceans: improve garbage habits – including reduction of use of plastics, Google Ocean Sustainability and become more educated – including Sylvia Earle’s YOUTUBE 2009 Award winning TED speech, consider changing your car to minimize carbon emissions, ride a bicycle to wherever you need to go, change all of your light bulbs to LED, contact your politicians to discuss their environmental views and impress upon them that it should be a priority, take stock of ways that YOU can reduce your human footprint. Reducing your carbon footprint is a process, and doesn’t happen overnight. We continuously need to alter the way we think and behave.

As a top predator, humans from the tropics to the poles have harvested all forms of marine life, from the smallest shrimp to the largest whales, from the ocean’s surface to its floor. The staggering volume of fish removed from our waters has had a ripple effect through all ocean ecosystems – 90 percent of our major predators have been taken from our oceans – including sharks and tuna. Fifty percent of our coral reefs are dead and 80 are in peril. Over 25 percent of our marine life depends on these precious coral reefs.

Yet the ocean continues to provide food for billions of people, and improved fishing practices in many places are leading to healthier marine-life populations. We’re slowly getting better at managing what we catch to keep it within the ocean’s capacity to replenish. But while we may be advancing in this battle, we’re losing the war with climate change and pollution.

In the coming years, the life of our oceans will be defined by what we put into them: garbage, carbon dioxide, nutrients washed from the land, diseases from aquaculture and land-based animals, invasive species, plastics, medications, contaminants, noise and ever-increasing marine traffic. We once incorrectly viewed our oceans as limitless storehouses of marine bounty and places to dump our garbage; now it’s clear they can’t  handle this magnitude of destruction.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s recent report described how ingredients in the ocean’s composition are changing dramatically. Life in the seas is closely linked to factors in the immediate surroundings, such as temperature, acidity or pH, salinity, oxygen and nutrient availability. We now have over 400 DEAD Zones that we know of on our planet – meaning NO LIFE, NO OXYGEN. Importantly, the location of these dead zones line the shorelines of our continents! The largest is in one of our ocean’s most reproductive region in the Gulf of Mexico and is over 77,000 square miles.

The oceans now absorb one-quarter of the 30 billion tons of carbon that we send into the atmosphere each year. We are not only changing the currents and weather patterns on our planet but as well the acidic levels of the ocean composition is rising. That’s really bad news for organisms with calcium carbonate shells that dissolve in acidic conditions, as well as the entire ocean ecosystem.

By 2050 scientists predict that there will be no more fish if we continue to mismanage our oceans. Over half of a billion people in this world live within 100 kilometers of the ocean and depend on fish for their food and livelihood.

Human”s short-sighted, and somewhat selfish lifestyles have created this problem, and therefore we should be responsible to FIX it. Ironically, the ocean’s demise has taken place when the Hippies from the ’70s became Yuppies in the ’90s. Most of this has happened on OUR WATCH.

The oceans can live without US, but we can’t live without the oceans.

World renowned marine biologist Sylvia Earle concluded her 2009 award winning TED speech by saying, “We have 10 years to make this right. TEN years on behalf of the 10s of 1000s of years ahead on this planet.”

That was 5 years ago…

What will YOU do today on behalf of our oceans? I would love to hear from you…