Bananas on Boats, Are They Cursed?

Banana-2Today I joined my neighbor, Lance, and friend, Chuck, on his boat for a casual day of fishing at Mid Channel Bank. Our Raymarine fish finder showed plenty of bait and salmon marks. After two hours of trolling back and forth without a strike Lance began eating his lunch, which included a bright banana. Upon seeing the banana I cringed and wondered aloud if the banana on the boat was the cause of us not catching any salmon.

Lance continued to eat the banana and then put the peel in his bag. “Don’t leave the peel on the boat,” I said. “Throw it overboard!”

Since Lance had never heard about the curse of bananas on boat I told the story, as follows.

Hundreds of years ago, in the Polynesian Islands, a Kahuna (King) had a harem of beautiful girls. A young man fell in love with one of the Kahuna’s young harem girls and the two conspired to leave the island, and the Kahuna behind. They worked secretly to get a large canoe capable of traveling to a distant island. They hoped to travel to an island far enough away from the Kahuna to make it difficult and not worth the Kahuna’s effort to chase after them. They stored fresh water in hollow coconut shells but soon realized their food would spoil on the long journey. After much thought they decided to load the canoe with green bananas in hopes they would ripen along the way without spoiling.

ImageAfter loading their canoe they slipped away in the dark of night, paddling furiously to get away from the island before daybreak. When the sun rose the next day the Kahuna discovered one of his girls missing. After learning of their plan through one of his other harem girls he put a curse on bananas on boat for eternity, in hopes the two lovers would starve to death before reaching the distant island.

Do you believe in this superstition? Many boaters and anglers do and refuse to let anyone aboard if they have a banana with them. I’m not sure if Lance’s banana caused us to not catch salmon today, but I can guarantee he will never bring a banana with him again!

About John L. Beath

John Beath is a writer, photographer, videographer, blogger, tackle manufacturer & Captain at Whaler's Cove Lodge in Southeast Alaska. He is also owner of and host at Lets Talk Outdoors @
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