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Why why is a right under a grant from the Educational Television and Radio Center in cooperation with the National Association of educational broadcasters. Today's programme. Youth is a wonderful time and it is a time which for me is long past. Now. Now I am a writer. But then. Then I was 20. I was a second mate. I was a second mate and I was bound for the far east as soon as I could locate the studio. Is this the Judaeo and who may you be Conrad. Joseph Conrad a second mate. OK I do see you in this.
Oh look you're not bored Mr. Wrenn. You just kept on beards the name son and mine is Conrad. You know not English are you polish originally sir. No difference of course. A mate is a mate. You look ahead experience I suppose. TO AUSTRALIA This last trip on a clipper I suppose. A beautiful ship like crispy Sharon a going to work to making this one sail and that's quite the way I'm used to it. Don't take me wrong I'm glad you see this is my first command of this ship or any ship. But I've been around as mate. We don't get on. We were to take on a cargo of coal at the time and then proceed to Bangkok. I joined the ship in London. We shipped a crew and headed for our loading of course.
High not to have been a four days sailing. Just entering Yarmouth road for Mr. Conrad what do you think the ship doesn't seem to be the fastest. Captain he's tired Mr. Conrad has a week just to get here. The Lord knows how long till we put in a tie and three days for loading. If all goes well I'm sure it will Mr. Beard if you handle to sail well. Don't you think there's a smell about the weather Mr. Conrad. There is the smell. As the storm got better you'd better shovel that stand with the Germans. It's not Britain work for cooks. None. Oh Captain I didn't hear you come up to us complaining Mr. Chairman we all know where you sign is cause then you would be to accept we are in the worst storm I've ever seen and
accept no matter of our sand ballast having shifted. How's it going Mr. Conrad. The men are making progress or a little faster if you can sir the ship is still too much off balance. It's wet sand and difficult to shovel I know but try we're in danger. In the gale let up the trip from London to the towering took 16 days. The deck was flooded the bulwarks men and men were exhausted from their shovelling. But the worst was yet to come. I am quite started. So it's just a matter now we have no cargo. Very enviable captain. I quite agree it should be quite mad myself but frankly there's nothing to be done. Loading to understand.
It's hard luck if we ran into the worst storm in 20 years. Some cargo if you can wait a bit and the shipowner's on my neck and pay for the cruise while we wait and twiddle our thumbs. But that's all I can suggest. Just one side please. I think you took off too much air the last time and a little good. The captain mentioned how much in style I was the captain the captain of my ship. Good chap. Now considering considering we've been in Port three months now can't get a cargo numbers about Lans a bad time for an old sailor. Better than that storm that blew up so I get to go to what I have all the time in the barber trade isn't very good at this time of year. Not Captain yet Henry but it's all the same. Oh yes please don't change. If you'll have to go you'll be sailing into those South Seas there when dinner say it
was. Mr. Conrad don't know that I've heard five words from you. Just thinking Captain Be careful. There is no figuring out the ship. We're making three knots. That's about all anyone can say. More I'm afraid. Spare me mister. We're leaking and the men can man the pond. Gail did it use taking too much water for the pumps Mr. Conrad were not three days out of port and finally have our cargo were headed for the Orient. We shall never make it so the caulking has gone out of our below water it seems to be dry dock patched up and the owners I don't know sir exactly. It's all on my agent head. I don't know either. Oh what do you suggest turn back I say. There's just nothing else to do. Yet.
Good you do ya have your. Back. At. Us we shouted all over the blasted waterfront. Right that way. See what. For one thing or the banker waiter. Wish I had never seen this tell Mr. Conrad. We've had a rotten seaman's lot. We were in port for another three months. The owners came down from London. The ship leaked All right. There was nothing to do but take it out of the water. The Jew deal was the joke of the whole port. When I say she leaks like a sieve What does Mr. call that. Mr. Conrad this is ship's not that the fellow don't all like.
She runs. Well Mr. Conrad who never thought the great Captain Bucky's watertight not not an ounce of water in the whole making four or five knots I'd say all's well that ends well. Only there's a strange smell here about smell. Oh likely the sea. We've been on land so much. We've forgotten what it's like to say oh you're probably right here my first command and I've been six months the captain of a laughing stock. She's an old ship but she's right enough in the back before she knows the way you might say bend but you've been to Australia Mr. Conrad Cox the same side of the world you know but it's a sprain I can see that doesn't hold any mystery for me. There's
rain and wind and all that you know you've been there for years. But the natives for one thing are friendly a good bunch if you don't get them angry at you and you can't think it's a very bad. I wouldn't go that far no it's an experience all right. I'm surprised myself I am what after all that I thought we'd never want to see and hear in the Indian Ocean the Indian Ocean Don't look now different to me. More coffee no thanks now I'm on deck in a bit. Oh I used to sail before the mast myself. You know that I suppose I wasn't always a cook. I don't believe you ever mentioned it. No I mightn't have sailing so I said to myself I said well it's the land of the sea and I I don't much care for the land nor I very much. There's something about the water. Well anyway I like it. Something the
captain asked me the same question. I don't know what now but it's something that sort of hangs all over the ship. Maybe I'd best check just to be sure. It does seem to come from this location captain. When you look at it more exactly. Not yet around Mr. Conrad. Look around let's make sure. Captain Ira it's small small Oh how can it be smoke unless unless the cargo of coal is on fire. The cargo was on fire. Moldering smoldering and getting ready to burst into flames. We tried to keep the air away secure I said if the fire had nowhere it couldn't burn that's what we hope for. We used all hands on board ship the cook included. We sweated out.
Days went by creaked on three knots an hour before a dying wind. You know ho goes at Mr. Conrad no one knows I'm afraid the smoke still leaking up from the hole of the seamen claimed the Balkans are getting hotter. Do you think the bulkheads are hotter. I felt them but I can't be sure of your imagination. I suppose so. Like waiting for an explosion. Then you don't think we can put it out. I think we might but I fear we won't. I'm inclined to share your feeling and it's unfortunate for you fortunate your first command and all that it may be the first but do stop as enough troubles for 10 ships. Oh I don't say I'd care to lose or you can count on my report to support your account of what happened. Mr. Conrad You sound as if the ship's gone down already. Hope for the best. There is always a chat. Captain are you all right Cap'n dear. A bit of a shock. What
did he say hold off that exploded. I am probably blown the hatch covers off. Better have a CNET Mr. Conrad and tell the Bo's'n I want to see and I kept another second Conrad a long time I didn't Lord away clear of the ship. We may have to abandon. There's no use Mr. Conrad let's face the fact that chances are 100 against us. Captain Yang has gone red hot it was in the chain hotel and there he is up the hot cocoa melted the seams of the ship forward. The anchor and all the chain just dropped through. There you are Mr. Conrad our last chance gone. Now this floating cola stove is anchored Zen the Bo's'n. I want to talk to him in my cabin and have them check their supplies in the longboats. We've come as far as we can in the jewel. Later we watched the ship go down.
We were in three boat three boats on the Indian Ocean and the seamen pulling their oars heading for the glorious East. There was nothing but water and sky and a cold for days. Sometimes there was no sound but the water against the boat. Later days later there were a few fever. We were exhausted yet I wasn't afraid I was young then I could have looked into the jaws of hell and still smiled and then suddenly one morning we reached the land. Heard in today's program we're done struggling time killer Lauren cocking Greg Morris Spence Schroeder and Scott
platter director's assistant John McLaughlin and studio engineers. Why is a writer is written by Floyd Horowitz and directed by Larry Wall. This is Dave Carter speaking. This has been another program in the series why is a writer produced by WSU Iowa School of the air under a grant from the Educational Television and Radio Center and is distributed by the National Association of educational broadcasters. This is the Radio Network.
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Why is a writer?
The Adventurer
Producing Organization
University of Iowa
WSUI 910 AM (Radio station : Iowa City, Iowa)
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
This program focuses on Joseph Conrad, who wrote of adventures at sea.
Series Description
Produced by the Iowa School of the Air, this series focuses on various works of literature from Shakespeare to Twain.
Broadcast Date
Media type
Actor: Stribling, Don
Actor: Morris, Greg
Actor: Keeler, Tom
Actor: Schroeder, Spence
Announcer: Carter, Dave
Director: Walcoff, Larry
Producing Organization: University of Iowa
Producing Organization: WSUI 910 AM (Radio station : Iowa City, Iowa)
Writer: Horowitz, Floyd
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: S60-6-20 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:14:30?
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Chicago: “Why is a writer?; The Adventurer,” 1961-02-24, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed December 4, 2023,
MLA: “Why is a writer?; The Adventurer.” 1961-02-24. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. December 4, 2023. <>.
APA: Why is a writer?; The Adventurer. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from