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#VVOR: Are you a pollywog or a shellback?

Par Virtual Regatta - October 25 2014

Are you a pollywog or a shellback?

As sailors step out of the hellish doldrums and starting crossing the equator they like to partake in a “line-crossing” ceremony of sorts. A pollywog is a sailor who has never crossed the equator, and is usually the subject of a baptism. A “shellback” aka a “son of Neptune” (a sailor who has already crossed the equator) helps the rookie sailors into their ranks via a number of hazing like rituals.

The more experienced sailors dress up like King Neptune (toilet paper beards and crowns made from scraps) and may subject pollywogs to having their hair shaved off or having old garbage thrown at them. 

However, the equator favours no sailor. Pollywog or shellback, we are all subject to her wrath. The current leaders of the fleet are spreading out over 200 miles, but are starting to streamline into a singlefile as they approach Fernando de Noronha.

The first 5 to cross were the Brazlian Sonolento XVI, Zozoreil, l35, Rijsel hoop avl and the Polish skipper dzidzia. The leaders are now passed Fernando de Noronha, and the rest of the fleet is following behind them. 

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