General Question

JackAdams's avatar

Pretend you are aboard the Titanic, and 6 hours before the imminent collision, you have a premonition of impending disaster. How do you convince the crew to alter their course by only one degree portside?

Asked by JackAdams (6492points) August 22nd, 2008

You are a stranger to them, of course, but you have never had a feeling this strong in your entire life, and you know that if Captain Edward J. Smith doesn’t alter the ship’s course as soon as possible, a catastrophe of the highest magnitude will surely happen.

So what magic words do you utter to them, to get them to believe you and not toss you into some large storage locker? Choose your words carefully, because you may only have one opportunity to utter them.

August 22, 2008, 11:24 AM EDT

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27 Answers

LKidKyle1985's avatar

grab a hostage and yell if you dont alter the course of this ship by 1 degree I am gonna throw her into the propellers! yarrrrr!

JackAdams's avatar

You know, that’s not really a bad idea, when you give it a lot of thought, because you are trying to save lives, and after the danger is averted, the hostage would be released, as you point to the starboard side and show them the iceberg they would have hit, had you not done what you did.

I would add that it would be better, if the hostage was someone who was willing to be used in such a manner, simply because s/he believed you.

August 22, 2008, 11:34 AM EDT

NecroKing's avatar

Just say you’re from the future, and that you are a vampire and cast a voodoo spell and scare the crap out of the Captain with a fortune Telling. ;)

LKidKyle1985's avatar

well the problem is, if she knows you wont really do it, she wont act really scared. So it might be better just to do some random person, or even a kid since its easier to toss a kid than a woman incase they really try to stop you. of course you dont really want to throw anyone over, but you have to make it seem like you will and can.

JackAdams's avatar

That’s a good point, also.

I am really amazed at all of the brilliance in here!

August 22, 2008, 11:38 AM EDT

wrestlemaniac's avatar

Shut up Necro, we’re talking about a chance to change history, and I would Take a few people who believe me and hijack the control cabin and change course, i would never let this disaster happen, (if i had a chance to change history), ever since i saw the movie.

LKidKyle1985's avatar

oh what if you grab a baby and threaten to punch it in the face, that would work too

NecroKing's avatar

That’s cruel you know!!

JackAdams's avatar

Everyone needs to keep in mind that in my scenario, you don’t know the future at all; you just have a very bad feeling that some kind of “collision disaster” is in the cards, and your feeling is strong enough, that it causes you to act.

August 22, 2008, 11:43 AM EDT

NecroKing's avatar

Well in my case I know the future.

JackAdams's avatar

But you wouldn’t, in my fictional scenario, as described.

August 22, 2008, 11:45 AM EDT

NecroKing's avatar

Oh then, I’d still stick to my plan, it might work.

LKidKyle1985's avatar

actually now that i think of it, using a baby as a hostage is the best thing, since it wont remember its hostage situation and permanetly scar it for life, where as a child may never be the same again. Though the mother may need some mental help afterwards.

JackAdams's avatar

The inspiration for this question, I might add, is a real-life situation that happened to a woman I knew, back in the 1970s.

She had what she called a “bad feeling” about a flight she was scheduled to be on, so she cancelled her tickets and booked another flight on a different airline.

The original flight did crash, and most of the passengers were killed.

Now, she didn’t know that the flight was going to crash (or she would have warned others), but she just had an unexplained feeling of dread for some reason, and changed her mind, which saved her own life.

August 22, 2008, 11:50 AM EDT

LKidKyle1985's avatar

Yeah i heard about that. later on didn’t death finally catch up to her and she died in some freak accident? (ha just making fun of final destination)

drhat77's avatar

@LkidKyle – i learned something about myself today – turns out i’ll give ANYONE lurve just for saying “yarrrr!”

anyhoop, in this hostage situation you’d probably be outnumberd

also, the boat was in the north atlantic – minor degree changes might have meant just hitting a different iceberg later.

basically, if you were stupid enough to get on a boat that was declared “unsinkable”, you pretty much did yourself in

JackAdams's avatar

@LkidKyle: So far as I know, the woman I mentioned is still alive and well and grateful.

August 22, 2008, 11:57 AM EDT

wrestlemaniac's avatar

Ahoy matey….YARRRRRR!

wildflower's avatar

Step 1: Find a crewman, tie and lock him up
Step 2: Head up to the bridge and tell the captain one of his crewmen just went overboard

Sueanne_Tremendous's avatar

Bottle of booze and my boobs and he’d do just about anything I ask.

JackAdams's avatar

I must remember that, the next time I go sailing…

August 22, 2008, 3:35 PM EDT

richardhenry's avatar

The problem wasn’t really direction, it was that the ship was well over speed and running through a cluster of icebergs. Breaking crossing records would only prove her supremacy, and to everyone who mattered, this fact was more important than safety.

Not that I wouldn’t try to undo it if I was there, but I think that the sinking of the Titanic was important. It forever changed maritime safety, for the better, and reminded us all that there is no such as a man made vessel impervious to danger.

Another interesting note is that the surviving duty lookout, Frederic Fleet, later told an enquiry that had they been equipped with binoculars, they would have been able to see the iceberg much sooner. When questioned on how much sooner, he replied, “enough to get out of the way.” The binoculars were stuck in a locker for which the crew had no key.

JackAdams's avatar

Better than binoculars, would have been a TELESCOPE, mounted in the Bridge.

that disaster really could have been prevented. So many errors were made…

August 23, 2008, 11:31 PM EDT

NecroKing's avatar

You know I would have been like, screw you all, and flee the ship.

JackAdams's avatar

In what? With what?

You could not have (physically) been able to launch a lifeboat by yourself, undetected.

August 24, 2008, 9:29 AM EDT

NecroKing's avatar

Steal a life boat, with a hostage.

redheaded1's avatar

There were very wealthy people aboard the ship. Convince them, get some of their cash, and bribe the helmsman.

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