I want to be a godmother …to a 130 000 ton baby, please?
What do Whoopi Goldberg, Queen Elizabeth the 2nd, Audrey Hepburn, the Olsen Twins and Tinkerbell have in common? Well, they are all Cruise Ship godmothers and I would like to be one too please?
For thousands of years, different ceremonies have marked the launching of a new ship. According to a number of believable but unreliable internet sources, in the past, dating as far back as the ancient Greeks and Romans, a religious figure would christen a new ship with blood or holy water, but in modern times (and this I can vouch for) notable female figures are called upon and champagne is used. Some cruise ship companies have used board members or relatives to be awarded the honour, but celebrities and monarchy make for more publicity, usually someone whose image is in line with the ship and the cruise line. After the bottle has been broken and the champagne spilt, the godmother’s job is over. They rarely even cruise on the maiden voyage (Audrey Hepburn is one exception). They are given a plaque somewhere on the ship that they are unlikely to ever step foot on again and that’s it.
It’s not fair! I worked on a cruise ship for over a year, seven days a week and passed these plaques countless times, smiling at guests through my exhaustion and I didn’t even have magic powers to help me! Tinkerbell isn’t even real! I didn’t say that (everyone clap), but it’s not fair!
A ‘godparent’ by definition, was originally the title given to someone who would sponsor a child’s baptism and sure, I don’t have the celebrity to generate enough publicity to make a valuable contribution to a ceremony like that, but there’s got to be more to it, surely? Traditionally godparents were supposed to ensure that a child was bought up in the knowledge of God. Well, in my time at sea I witnessed much unspeakable debauchery. People go on cruises more often to lose their religion than grow in it and with people like Kim Cattrall as a godmother, it’s not surprising. The modern view of a godmother however, is that it is someone chosen by the parents to take a special interest in the child’s life, and take care of them should they be orphaned. A 100 000 ton luxury cruise ship is unlikely to be orphaned but if anyone takes a special interest in its life I can guarantee it’s not going to be the celebrities with their plaques who never cruise.
One of the ways I could potentially become a cruise ship godmother is by almost winning Idols. – It worked for Jennifer Hudson. She was once a singer on a Disney cruise ship and then when she became a household name they rewarded her for all her ‘hard work’ (That’s partly tongue-in-cheek, singers might work hard but they definitely have the most glamorous jobs on board and the most privileges and free time). I’m guessing an Oscar would work just as well. I’ll get started on that right away.
Perhaps a more plausible way to win the role would be to enter a competition like the one run by NCL. They invited their ex-cruisers to submit videos about why they should be the godmother of the Gem when it was built for a chance to win the title. That was nice of them. I hope that catches on and more laymen like myself get the job, but I probably have a better chance of discovering that I am really the Princess of Genovia. Monarchy are called upon often. Even Princess Fiona is a godmother. Apart from also not being real, she’s something of an ogre.
By far the godmother I am most jealous of however, is Sophia Loren who clearly doesn’t believe in sharing. That woman is godmother to about 9 different ships – the whole MSC fleet. Give someone else a chance, I just want one!
This Sunday, the 3rd of June, Carnival’s latest ship the Carnival Breeze will set off on its maiden voyage, a 12 night cruise from
Venice to Barcelona. There is no word yet on the identity
of the godmother but when she is announced I will be sure to be jealous of her.