Yes, People Are Writing Horny Fanfic About the Suez Canal and the Ever Given

Illustration for article titled Yes, People Are Writing Horny Fanfic About the Suez Canal and the Ever Given
Image: Suez Canal Authority (Getty Images)

You know the story by now: A massive container ship has been stuck in the Suez Canal since Tuesday, successfully blocking one of the busiest shipping routes on the planet. Ships have been forced to travel around the Cape of Good Hope like it’s the 1700s, global trade has been disrupted, there may be a toilet paper shortage because of all of this, and the memes... the memes have been great. But have you seen the fanfic?

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As of Friday, fanfiction platform ArchiveOfOurOwn boasts 27 fanworks with the tag “Suez Canal (Anthropomorphic),” the majority pairing the canal and Ever Given, the container ship at the heart of the chaos. By default, these fics could all fall under the (arguably antiquated) category of “crack fic”—fan fiction that is intentionally absurd, usually written for laughs—but they’re also pretty compelling.

Take, for example, a fic titled “XXX-TRA WIDE CARGO STUFFS MAJOR SHIPPING LANE —- DELIVERS HUGE PAYLOAD!!” It was one of the first of the Suez/Ever Given fics to crop up and tells the tale of the ship and the canal as lovers going through a rough patch:

“I’m so very glad,” the Suez Canal said, acidly, “that we’re doing this live. How convenient that we have minute-by-minute GPS updates so the whole world can see exactly how bad your aim is.”

“There’s no need for personal attacks,” the Ever Given said with forced patience. “It’s not like I did this on purpose.”

“So fucking around and drawing a dick and balls in the Red Sea, that was, what, top-notch professional steering?”

“That was foreplay. And hey, this isn’t all on me, you know. It takes two to tango.”

“It’s not my fault your bulbous bow is so fucking big. Overcompensating much?”

“Well it’s not my fault you’re too outdated to handle the capacity requirements of modern shipping!”

A frigid silence descended.

“I cannot believe,” the Suez Canal hissed, “that you just said that.”

“I didn’t mean it.”

“You know I had work done in 2015. You think expansion projects are easy?”

“Baby, come on—”

“You think I can schedule eight billion dollar infrastructure improvements like a day at the salon? Just because you can slap on a fresh coat of paint in a month—”

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The story’s author, who goes by the name GalWednesday, calls it “the most cursed thing I’ve ever written.”

“I think the idea popped into my head while I was looking at memes about the Ever Given’s “bulbous bow” and how it had gotten lodged in place,” they told Jezebel via Tumblr DM. “I was doing my pandemic exercise routine of walking laps from one end of my apartment to the other in an endless loop—that is in no way metaphorical for 2020/2021 as a whole—and I started mentally drafting an actual fic for it.”

It didn’t take long to write, though GalWednesday took some time to research the cost of the Suez Canal expansion project and ended up browsing Quora for answers on how long it takes to paint a cargo ship.

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So far, the fanfiction has received 178 comments and counting, a surprising feat for a 263-word story about a (horny) boat and a (horny) body of water.

“The response has been WAY bigger than I expected, which I think has more to do with our collective need for a stress release valve than anything about the fic itself,” GalWednesday said. “But I have been really enjoying how feedback alternates between ‘funny, thank you!’ and ‘JFLDJSLFJDS I HATE THIS’ which I interpret to mean roughly the same thing.”

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Other fanfics include: an erotic lesbian take on the duo with the tags “what if we hugged ... and put a stop to 12 percent of the world’s trade in the process;” a gay erotica with the summery “A Shipping Container Having Anal Sex With The Earth;” and even a “podfic”—an audio recording—of a fic called “Suez Says That She Loves You,” its summary reading, “Suez says that she loves you, as she holds you in her tight embrace.”

And speaking of summaries, it’s hard to resist one that describes the Ever Given as a “fuckboi boat”:

The banks of the Suez canal were heaving with lust and mournfulness. She allowed the passage of freight to bypass the Cape of Good Hope, but what did she have to show for it? The novelty of the water gently lapping at the walls of her soaked canal started off exciting and had her dreaming of more, but it had been 60 years of gentle lapping and foreplay is nice but only if, y’know, you follow it with actual play. Nearby In the Mediterranean the ultimate fuckboi boat revs her motor and feels her oats, looking for someone to fuck.

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But then there are summaries that are rooted in longing, like this:

The canal knows the Ever Given is different from the moment she appears at their mouth, waiting her turn for entry like everyone else. The first clue is her size: she’s larger than a Suezmax ship, larger than they’re used to taking, and the thought of it makes the canal’s waters shift in excitement. There’s not much that interrupts the monotony of a life spent letting ships traverse back and forth, but the Ever Given promises something new.

The canal starts mentally mapping out the Ever Given’s dimensions, imagining exactly where she might graze their sides. Where she might provide the contact the canal has been deprived of for decades now; contact they crave with every lap of their waves, with every ship that glides through them without so much as a single glancing touch.

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And then there’s this one, which can only be summed up in a screenshot:

Illustration for article titled Yes, People Are Writing Horny Fanfic About the Suez Canal and the Ever Given
Screenshot: Archive Of Our Own
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“Watch huge ship destroy capitalism” indeed.

Somehow, this is much more enthralling than the fancam the Suez Canal Authority released Thursday. Perhaps they, too, should pivot to fanfic to boost morale while the Ever Given is removed from the canal’s mighty grip.

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It’s unclear when the Ever Given will be freed. Shipping experts estimated that it could take days or even weeks before the ship is re-floated, but Shoei Kisen KK, the Japanese shipping company that owns the vessel, hopes to have the situation sorted by Saturday morning eastern standard time. Either way, opportunities to meme, fic, and otherwise delight in this absurdity won’t last forever.

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At least the saga will live on, in posterity, in one of the nerdiest corners of the internet. As to whether or not “XXX-TRA WIDE CARGO STUFFS MAJOR SHIPPING LANE —- DELIVERS HUGE PAYLOAD!! will receive a sequel once the Ever Given is freed, the answer currently stands at a “probably not.”

“I cannot imagine a sequel, so I leave it up to every reader’s imagination how the Suez Canal and Ever Given manage to unstick themselves and how long their OnlyFreight stream has been going by the time it happens,” they said. “If anyone else wants to add onto it, they’re absolutely welcome to do so, and presumably we’ll all see each other in hell.”

Staff writer, mint chocolate hater.

DISCUSSION

Gob_Hobblin
Gob_Hobblin

Sometimes, at my lowest points in life, a bunch of horny people come along and write erotic fanfiction about beached container ships, and my hope is restored.