"Orcas!" He throws his arms up and shakes his head at the ceiling.
"What? It happened to that family who were attacked in the Pacific. Whales sank their boat and they spent thirty-eight days in their life raft. I read it in this book." I start turning pages rapidly, trying to find the evidence to show that I'm not being irrational.
"That was a freak occurrence," he says. "That won't happen to us."
I slide into fourth gear and address him with slits for eyes. "Ivan. People who end up in life rafts do not, in fact, set that as a goal for themselves. They do not decide: 'Oh, hey, I have an idea: let's sink our boat. It will give us a chance to test the new life raft.' They sink by mistake. They survive because -- and only because -- they're prepared for the worst. Nobody plans to sink their boat. But guess what? Some do." I fold my arms and rest my case, gloating at my flawless logic. That will convince the jury.
"Yeah, but we won't sink."
"Bah! Ivan! That's your only argument? You have no more points to make? Only a psychic premonition?"
"We won't sink. I guarantee you."
"Guarantee? Oh no you did not. You can't guarantee that."
"We won't sink -- guaranteed."
I'm in top gear now, pedal to metal. "Well, what if we do, huh? Then you'll be like, 'Oh, gee, you were right, baby, we should have packed warm clothes and a radio and survival food, but guess what? It will be too late because we'll be stranded and freezing and starving and then we'll be bloody dead."
"Stop freaking out. Calm down, okay? All these people you're reading about -- they didn't have the modern gear we have. The guy in Adrift: Seventy Six Days Lost at Sea, for example, his EPIRB was far inferior to ours. Our EPIRB signals to the coast guard, but the old EPIRBs would only send a signal to planes that happened to be flying overhead or ships in the area. That's why a ditch kit was necessary back then."
"I know, it's just..." I take a breath and calm myself. "I want to prepare for the worst, you know? Insurance."
"But the thing about insurance is, where does it stop? We could get a second life raft, immersion suits in case the life rafts fail. We could paint the decks fluorescent orange to aid air rescue, spend $1000 on another EPIRB, $20,000 on a brand new engine, hell ... while we're at it, $500,000 on a steel boat. But we'll never leave."
"So how do we know what we should get then?"
"Probability management. Weighing up odds and making decisions based on that. We can take fifteen years to get the boat ready, spending more and more money. But I don't want to wait until retirement age. The odds of getting injured or dying before sixty -- car crash, cancer, Armageddon, whatever -- and never going: those odds scare me. That's why few people do this trip. They put off going to make their boat safer, better, newer, and time gets the best of them. You're right--bad things can happen out there, but chances are that nothing will, and no matter what we do, we can't make a trip like this danger-free."