In 2005 I took a job aboard the Heron, a 48-foot Canadian-built seiner. Its skipper had a contract to collect cukes from dive boats and sail them north to the processor in Juneau. We'd leave Sitka in the early hours of the morning, the aurora borealis shivering chartreuse over the mountains, drop the hook, and go on channel 16 to advertise our price per pound. Around two in the afternoon dusk hit. We'd flip on the mast light, throw down the fenders, and unload dive boats with names like Moon Shadow, Chilkat, Wild Alaska. We wore emergency-orange fishing bibs and cotton glove liners that resembled nothing so much as ballroom gloves. After our last boat untied, Grant, the skipper, threw steaks into a cast-iron skillet, made muffins from black bananas, and popped in a VHS. We were kings aboard the Heron.