Francesco Schettino will finally get his day in court. For most people, that would be a relief. For him, well, not so much.
For those of you who don’t recognize his name, he happens to be the captain of the ill-fated Italian cruise ship, Costa Concordia, which ran aground off the coast of the small Mediterranean island Giglio a couple of years ago. He is being accused of abandoning ship without filing proper paperwork, dereliction of duty, manslaughter, being a coward and speaking really bad Italian. He is from the Naples region and barely can be understood by most Italians who are not in the Mafia.
Attendance for the trial is expected to be so large they have moved the trial to a theater. That’s appropriate considering the proceedings are expected to provide good theater.
A famous ballerina he was trying to steal a kiss from just before the collision is even ratting him out. According to her version of the story, she was sitting on his lap steering the vessel with a martini in her hand in pitch darkness when they felt the ship heave suddenly. The captain merely shrugged and said they had most likely run over something in the sea and that the ship probably had a flat tire.
The ballerina, who is from Moldova and could barely understand Italian, let alone the captain’s awful dialect, began to think the captain was just being nice to her since the ship began to list violently to one side.
She said that just then the captain called someone on the phone and ordered another strange-sounding drink called a “helicopter.” When the assumed bartender on the other end of the line said he didn’t know how to make one, he instead ordered another drink called a “lifeboat.” I don’t think she is going to be of much help to him, but that’s just my opinion.
The captain has assembled a first-rate defense team and boy, is he going to need it. He has sought out O.J. Simpson’s lawyers Johnnie Cochran and Robert Kardashian but was crushed when he learned they both died some time ago. Not to be deterred, he reportedly is considering asking the pope to represent him.
Whatever the verdict, the disaster that resulted in loss of life and several injuries is a reminder that despite all the modern technology available and the advances in modern medicine, there is still no cure for stupidity.
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