Captain Cook is getting the old heave-ho

WHAT is going on!

Everywhere I look, couples are splitting up.

Couples my age, so believe me, sex is not the problem.

Not that we don’t do it, you understand. You just begin to realise it’s not what makes the world go round.

Tea in bed on a Saturday morning. That’s what makes the world go round. And eggs and bacon for breakfast.

It was different when I was in my thirties and everywhere I looked couples were swapping partners and beds like Pokemon cards.

The wives would come and cry on your shoulder, which could be interesting…

And that’s the other thing — this time it’s the wives who are leaving!

You shouldn’t have to worry about these things in your twilight years. I daren’t go down the pub any more in case I come home and find my dinner in the cat and all my wife’s clothes gone.

Or worse – all my clothes gone.

They’re not even abandoning ship – they’re jettisoning the cargo. Especially any cargo that doesn’t seem to have any clearly defined or useful purpose.

Well, you would, wouldn’t you?

At first I thought it was because they’ve suddenly realised they’re on the wrong cruise and they want to get off. But it’s not.

It’s because they were promised palm trees, and tropic beaches, deckchairs and daiquiris, and all they got was a hammock in the engine room.

Now they’re mutinying by the shipload. They are realising the bloke at the helm is a dud and if they just kick him over the side the worst that can happen is that the ship keeps going on autopilot.

And who knows… with a few adjustments they might still sail up on a palm‑fringed beach before the sun sets.

Basically: they don’t need blokes. After 40 years of thinking they need a man around the house to do all the little odd jobs, they realise it’s cheaper and a lot, lot quicker to get a man in.

And the really scary tart is that they’re probably right!

It doesn’t take ’em long to work out that not only can they manage without us; but also that it might actually be more fun without us!

There’s still a horizon up ahead, even if they can’t see it from the engine room.

Who can blame them for wanting to sail over it and see what’s on the far side.

And it’s no good telling them it won’t be any different to the things on this side.

That’s what you say when you’re too bone idle to get out of the armchair.

We are going to have to change our ways. For several decades we managed to con them into believing there are lots of things they needed us for.

And, actually, there were only two: having children (been there and done that); and lifting heavy weights, and I can’t do that any more.

Weathering storms, trimming sails… easy peasy, thank you very much.

In the days of Captain Cook, crews didn’t mutiny. It was because no one else knew how to plot a course through the rocks. Now we’ve taught everyone how to navigate and Captain Cook is getting the old heave-ho.

So, Captain Cook.. what are you going to do about it?

Not a lot of options really, except maybe make the voyage a little more interesting. Less salt pork; more daiquiris. Just don’t strip to the waist and start fooling around in the rigging again.

You no longer have the figure for it, and the fall could kill you.