Not So Little Mermaid

Soo…yes this isn’t a carving, but as this fiberglass concoction is hanging so too hangs a tale of carving.

During my stint as a maritime carver, I had booths at many boat and crafts shows. My display of eagles, quarter boards, billet heads, and boat portraits received lots of attention. Inevitably not all of it was of a sort I really wanted. Alcohol complicated sales and display. Sloshed beer was a cleanup problem. Show attendees who were inebriated rarely bought. But, frequently caused problems.
At some point in a show a man would walk up and ask me how much It’d cost to carve a figurehead of his wife. “like this (putting his hands behind his head), but bustier.”

After the first couple of polite replies, I grew tired of these exchanges, and would:
a.) say sure, and the name a flagrantly outrageous price;
b.) ask for a signed consent form from his wife agreeing to this, or
c.)for the genuinely incorrigible refer them to a place in Newport where the exact model pictured here was available for about $150 in fiberglass. I actually printed up a consent form for those who seemed really serious about this, but never got one back signed…I wonder why?

This beauty hung in the Oldies Marketplace (Newburyport, MA) for several months before it was snapped up. Last time I was there, it had been replaced by one equally well endowed. Thereby proving I guess that there was a market for them, and probably that I contributed to it.

Please, no mermaid requests without a signed consent form!

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