Kim's Blogs

An Imitation Life on Carnival Cruise Lines

—- An imitation universe without land or boundaries.  This is life on a cruise ship—Kim Sisto



–Once upon a time there was a little girl who decided she
wanted to work on the Love Boats.


But truth be told, there was much more sex on those boats
than love, honey.


Much more.


For example, if you assumed the crew were only in charge of navigation and safety, well,
then you don’t know shit about the cruise lines.


I heard from a
reliable source the officers actually had a colored chart in their lounge with
the names and ratings of every passenger they had screwed during our weekly


That particular
chart overflowed with  hundreds of girls
names from Miami, San Juan,
to the Cayman


P i g s.


A very married Captain
Monzo was sleeping with one of the casino girls
(yes, that’s what we were termed).


“He thinks I’m
very beautiful.,” she confessed while we were sipping  pina coladas on the Lido
deck one night.  “Except my teeth,” she




She pointed her
slender hot pink tipped nail to her front teeth, which were perfect movie star


“He paid a
dentist in St. Croix to fix these two crooked


urgently &  furiously, I despised
Monzo.  I mean, I had imagined,  at least,  he was different than the rest.


Why did she need
to change for him?


Old Fart -Asshole!


After that,  I despised the Italians on Carnival Cruise


I was much more
intrigued by the British dudes.


particular,  Mr. Liverpool.


He wasn’t interested,
thus, this made me more interested.

He didn’t chase
me,  thus, I pursued him.


A girl becomes
quite confident after 6 or 7 Goombay Smashes.  No?


Yeah,  in case you haven’t realized yet,  alcohol was a huge part of ship culture…along
with lots of other sex drugs and rock and roll shenanigans.


When one works
and lives on a cruise ship,  it’s as if
reality relinquishes and  consequences
are inconsequential.


In other words,
what applies on land doesn’t necessarily apply when you’re floating above the Atlantic with your hair blowing in air and salt water upon your tongue.


“Don’t tell
anybody we hooked up,” I whispered to Mr. L.
“I don’t want the casino girls to know.”


….but next
morning,  a bunch of the C-girls scurried
up to me during breakfast asking me how my night was, what time I got back to
the cabin, if I had a good time?


Wink.  Wink.   Give us every single detail.


You see, they had
just bumped into Mr. L. who had bright red lips smeared all over his crisp
white tuxedo shirt.


“U-um,  excuuuuuse me,”  I said.
“How do you know those lips were mine?”


Then all of the
bitches burst into a fit laughter.

Carnival Cruise Lines. /  Mardi Gra / An Imitaion Universe.



— Darling
Reader,  would you ever want to take a
cruise or be employed on a cruise ship?xxxx

-& to my fellow ship mates reading this,  tell me if you agree w/ my perspective.

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  • Reply
    Vidya Sury
    March 30, 2013 at 9:29 am

    🙂 I’ve heard a lot about life on the high seas. Had a couple of cousins in shipping. We used to be fascinated by the stories we heard. And yes, I secretly wished I could work on one of those. Not sure if I would have been excited if it happened, but the anticipation was gorgeous. Made for many fantasies.

    🙂 Of course, the cousins’ stories about home-sickness and being cut off from land for months was quite sobering.

    Thanks for sharing, Kim. So romantic how you met Mr.Liverpool.

    Smooch to you!
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  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 9:31 am

    Cool story, Kim. And you were sooooooooo beauuuttttiifulllll! I love how gorgeous you look in that photo. What was Mr. Liverpool’s job on the cruise? The Love Boat was one of my favorite shows back then. Sigh.
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  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 9:32 am

    Isn’t it wild all the lives we live in one short lifetime? I think about this all the time, sometimes I dont recognize my old self or my new self. See you tomorrow! Xoxo

  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 9:50 am

    Hey Kim I was there, I can vouch for most of this. I use to love how the passengers use to leave all their drugs with us and we would give them to the musicians, lol I also liked partying with the passengers, the crew got boring. We use to call the tope deck casino beach, and rmemeber getting up early and seeing them dump all the trash in to the ocean and that is why i don’t eat fish. We were always tired and the Puertorican Mafia that ran the casinos then were all out to get laid and were mean like Jose, unless you laid him. We never knew where the brigg was no one ever got in trouble, and no one ever went overboard. We did what we wanted back in the day, i even smuggled my Puertorican girlfriend on board ,she sailed to St. Thomas with me we got off went to Sparky’s my favorite place to eat we hung out she flew back to Puerto Rico and I went back to the ship. You could never do that now. I also became very very fond of the British especially the Scousers. We were the Pioneers and were so hot back then it was the day of the LoveBoat, Carnival only had 3 ships and they were all OLD. I think I covered every inch of the Mardi Gras seriously, I use to explore all the time. The commradity(?) is so special knowing you since 1980 and a few of us that are still friends we shared things that others could not understand. I always remember whenever I went on vacation, I use to take my watch and never look at it till I went back to the ship. We always had to know what time it was and could never be late or sick. I never even had a plan to go on the ships it happened by accident and here we are a;; these years later, still friends, Love u and Dave always Kim

    • Reply
      March 31, 2013 at 5:11 am

      Kim, what a tale! I really loved it – and believe me, needing some light relief right now.

      You know, I can’t look at old photos like that long enough. I just dream into them, imagining, feeling, seeing. Gorgeous old photo. Imagine that one moment, snapped frozen.

      Anyway, replying to Terri’s bla bla because that was, like, wow!! I thought working at the casino was an adventure, but all that… wow.

      It’s amazing isn’t it really, that “getting laid” means so much to some humans – like that Mafia. What a pressure that would be – and how are you regarded if you don’t do? Such pressure.

      Really enjoyed this one, & all the comments.

      Happy Easter! 🙂
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    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      April 3, 2013 at 4:57 am

      Great memories, Terri.

      We were so naughty! Love you. Xxxxx
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  • Reply
    Beverly Diehl
    March 30, 2013 at 9:53 am

    In theory, I would love to work on a cruise ship, or take a cruise. In reality, I am horribly prone to motion sickness.

    Leaving red or pink lipstick on your man’s shirt is sexy. Puke, not so much.

    Love this story. Love love love.
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  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 10:01 am

    Kim, you could’t have picked a better guy.
    Love You

  • Reply
    Ellen M. Gregg
    March 30, 2013 at 10:13 am

    Wowzers. I had no idea, although I’m not all that surprised. It’s very much in line with how things get when a show is in the thick of rehearsals, and then production. Spending so much time with the same people, all working (and playing) toward the same goal, creates a powerful, and oftentimes surreal, vortex. “What happens backstage stays backstage” would work as a tagline. 😉

    I love the thought of a cruise. It appeals to me in the sense of one price pretty much covering the whole shebang, and it being a complete departure from the norm. One day. Maybe.

    By the way, as pretty as you are in that youthful picture, you have grown into true beauty, Kim. It emanates off the computer screen.

    Happy Easter, sweets. 🙂 xoxo

  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 10:13 am

    I would LERV to take a cruise! Has to be with the right people.
    Because what happens on the cruise ship STAYS on the cruise ship.

    (I pursued the Brits myself in my younger days!)

  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 10:17 am

    Kim,I love what you Dad said about Mr. Liverpool and I am quite fond of him even though I have not meet him…yet. i got to go get a job on a cruise.
    xxx 🙂
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  • Reply
    Jann Huizenga
    March 30, 2013 at 11:23 am

    What a great story, Kim!!! How about a real-life novel about life on a cruise ship? Of course we all love Mr. Liverpool, as seen through your eyes. (The intrigue starts with his cool name.) The lipstick reminds me of a time when I was working in an office-university setting and I was rushing round a corner and bumped smack into a man with a crisp white shirt. Bright red lips on his chest. “What am I going to tell my wife?” he wailed. (I couldn’t believe he couldn’t just tell her the truth!)
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  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    What a magical cruise story my friend, that life intrigues me so much!

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  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 12:59 pm

    What a cool story! How long have you and Mr. Liverpool been together?

    I love cruises!!! I’ve been on 5. The last one was a 13 day Mediterranean cruise that totally hooked me on Italy! Having our anniversary dinner on the Grand Canal in Venice is impossible to top.

    I have a feeling you can get some dirt cheap deals on Carnival these days! I’ve even wondered if they’re exploring the possibility of sabotage. It just seems odd to me that in the past few years they’ve owned all the ships that have had problems. Don’t you think?

    And Beverly…there are lots of ways to avoid motion sickness these days. Just don’t go in the stormy season! 😉
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  • Reply
    lisa thomson
    March 30, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    No way! I understand it’s difficult ot prosecute if there are any assaults, rapes or any of that since you’re in international waters. So, not very safe for women. On a lighter note, I guess it’s fun when you’re young and single, providing the ship is safe.
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  • Reply
    The Bipolar Diva
    March 30, 2013 at 3:34 pm

    My husband says no more cruises! BAH! Maybe I should go alone….
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  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    On my cruise from Montreal to France, as a 20 yr old, the ship had a Canadian Junior hockey team heading for Europe. Woo-hoo…we didn’t need the crew! 😀 Alas I was in love with a young man back home who encouraged my European experience before we married. So I had a fabulous young hockey player cross-checking me throughout the cruise because he would not believe I would stay faithful on such an exciting trip. Showed him!
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  • Reply
    nan @ lbddiaries
    March 30, 2013 at 5:28 pm

    Such fun memories! I love seeing pictures of people in their… youth. We all always look so with it when we were NOT. We thought we knew it all – ha! I imagine working the cruise line is akin to working in a club – oi vey the stories! You are so beautiful, inside and out, young and younger!
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  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 6:22 pm

    I love cruising! After the first one all we could think about was cruising again. So far we have been on three, all on Carnival. However, after all the recent mishaps the next time will be on a different line. In regards to the centerpieces you asked about. The bling, stones and branches can be found at any hobby/craft store. The vases came from the dollar store. Last summer I bought a 25lb bag of sand at Menards for $7.00 and it will last forever.
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  • Reply
    Debi Pasricha
    March 30, 2013 at 6:37 pm

    This is awesome! I love how those revealing lips of your past are your trademark lips of today. (Isn’t there some saying about loose lips sinking ships . . . ?)

    I’ve never been on a cruise ship and never wanted to simply out of fear of being that far from land; however, I did love watching “The Love Boat” in the 70s! 🙂
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  • Reply
    Elephant's Child
    March 30, 2013 at 9:18 pm

    Mr Liverpool is a very, very lucky man.
    The young you was nearly as stunning as the current you. I think that wisdom adds a LOT to anyone’s appeal.
    I have never been on a cruise ship. Which, judging by how sick I was on the way to Antarctica is a very good thing. For me, and anyone in my vicinity. And nothing helped. I puked and puked and puked. Four injections later I stopped (for half a day).

  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 10:54 pm

    Love that shot of you.

    I used to travel a lot by boat as a young kid – and got very very seasick!
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  • Reply
    Valentine Logar
    March 30, 2013 at 11:44 pm

    Perhaps I should rethink my opinion of cruising! Love this story and you.

  • Reply
    March 30, 2013 at 11:57 pm

    How could he resist you, gorgeous Kim with the bright red lips? 🙂
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  • Reply
    March 31, 2013 at 4:14 am

    OMG, you are lovely – then and now. No wonder Mr. Liverpool couldn’t help but surrender to your charms. Now my horrible confession – yes, I did once send for an application to work on a cruise ship. Traveling, singing, acting – all sounded like fun until I realized that I’d be giving up college and likely just changing sheets or washing dishes. Oh well..I did take a cruise with hubby and we LOVED it. I hate that the cruise lines are getting such a bad rap lately. It’s too bad.
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  • Reply
    Red Dwyer
    March 31, 2013 at 6:25 am

    I would love a cruise, but my interest is not in the crew. or my shipmates. It would be in the absence of my world on the decks. I have no desire to work on ship, as the network of relationships are like living with family. It sounds as though it is no different than working in a club except you really cannot ever go home and away from prying eyes.

    Love the sea and you.
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  • Reply
    March 31, 2013 at 7:05 am

    Gorgeous photo of you…and I’m so glad you found a keeper 🙂
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  • Reply
    Michael Ann
    March 31, 2013 at 10:03 am

    I too loved The Love Boat and thought that would be sooo much fun! What work did you do on the ship?
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  • Reply
    March 31, 2013 at 11:19 am

    Kim, I’ve never been on a cruise; in fact, I don’t really want to. Fear of the water runs waaaay back in my family line, and I’m just one of the afflictees! Putting me on a floating platform far from terra firma is NOT my idea of relaxation or fun.

    That said, how interesting that you and Mr. Liverpool found each other on a cruise ship. And what fascinating stories you’ve told — I really didn’t know about the shenanigans!

    You were so pretty back then — no wonder you’ve weathered the years since so well!
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  • Reply
    Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella
    March 31, 2013 at 3:56 pm

    First of all I love that we get to hear about how you met Mr Liverpool!! But I have to say that chart sounds awful. Could you imagine stumbling upon that and seeing your name there! 😮 As always you’re fun and informative Kim xxx
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  • Reply
    March 31, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    Fabulous story, even has a great baddie … Monzo! grrrr

    What fun, eh? You look so beautiful. Your skin, your wide eyes, your dress. Geez, I loved that style, still do: off-the-shoulder with the flounce 😉

  • Reply
    April 1, 2013 at 4:02 am

    I love this story… I didn’t know how you guys met….

    I am actually anti-cruises (even though I never went on one) and Marc is even more anti-cruise than me. I contemplated going on the two day cruise I won from Katie Couric but Marc wanted no part….. sigh
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  • Reply
    Shakti Ghosal
    April 1, 2013 at 6:41 am

    Do you realise that what you have penned here is absolutely brilliant? With some tempering, you need to send this for publication.

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  • Reply
    April 1, 2013 at 7:27 am

    I love cruising…but I never did it as a single lady. I actually like taking my kids! You’re full of stories, aren’t you?
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  • Reply
    Sandy Webb
    April 1, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    This made me laugh….and it brought back lots of good memories. I lived and worked for 5 years at the Grand Canyon National Park and it was exactly the same way. My parents thought I was wasting time up there and maybe I was but I sure did have fun….LOL
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  • Reply
    April 1, 2013 at 6:29 pm

    True story? Dallas worked on the cruise ships (yes carnival) for a couple of years. Long before we met. I don’t want to know the details. Do I?
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  • Reply
    Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell
    April 2, 2013 at 4:49 am

    Wow, what a scandalous life at sea the cruise ships contain! What makes the story the best ever is that you ended up with Mr. Liverpool. 🙂
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  • Reply
    Lady Jennie
    April 2, 2013 at 6:34 am

    An entire book could be developed from this theme!
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  • Reply
    Elisabeth Kinsey
    April 2, 2013 at 8:22 am

    I applied to work on cruise ships in my early twenties and didn’t get hired. I have never stepped onto a cruise ship but am intrigued by the microcosm of them. You painted a picture that I can imagine happens!

  • Reply
    April 2, 2013 at 8:24 am

    You mean they’re not all like Gavin McLeod? I’m so disappointed. 😉

  • Reply
    San Diego Momma (Deb)
    April 2, 2013 at 7:19 pm

    I was obsessed with the Love Boat and I’m so glad to hear it was all true. 🙂

    I would totally work on a cruise ship if I were a young thing. Now, I’d just want to tell all the young things to not “lay Jose.”
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  • Reply
    April 3, 2013 at 10:37 am

    Love this, what a great story! I can’t ride on boats without getting extremely nauseous, so I would be screwed, haha. and what a beautiful photo of you!
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  • Reply
    Pure Complex
    April 3, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    This story really made me smile today. But I don’t think I could go on a cruise lol. I’m so happy you ended up with the love of your life 🙂
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  • Reply
    Jodi @ Heal Now and Forever
    April 4, 2013 at 3:34 am

    I am sure it happens anytime you have young people staying together over long periods of time. Boundaries get slurred with it. You feel separate from the world and values change- at least for the time being. But you got something that lasted out of it.

    I think that would have been a fun thing to do-when I was young and single. Tell us more about you and Mr. Liverpool!

  • Reply
    Alina Nguyen
    April 4, 2013 at 5:51 am

    The British guys do it best anyway! I like how you were pursuing him and he wasn’t interested. Obviously he liked something about you:)

  • Reply
    April 4, 2013 at 6:55 am

    It’s nice to read about how you met Mr L. I’ve never really fancied a trip on a cruise liner, and I’m a little less keen now ( ha ha ). But You never know where your going to find the good guys eh
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  • Reply
    April 4, 2013 at 10:03 pm

    Hola Kim!

    Actually, I have cruised several times, and must confess I LOVE IT! I wasn’t on the prowl for a ship board romance, maybe that’s why it was so much fun. My extended family was with me, a floating family reunion, which made it so much fun. I was a hesitant cruiser — the first one — but after a lot of nagging by my sister I finally agreed to try it, and since, have never regretted it. A few years back we did even did the Mediterranean. It was amazing, although, exhausting.

    Loved the descriptions within.. Mr.. Liverpool is very lucky to have found you…
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  • Reply
    April 5, 2013 at 3:36 pm

    Who knew life on a cruise ship could be such fun! 😉
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  • Reply
    April 6, 2013 at 10:07 am

    I love this post and would love to hear more stories from the love boat 😉
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  • Reply
    April 6, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    Kim, I have dreamed of the day when you would write how it all started with Mr. Liverpool! Please tell me you will make this a mini series! Such wonderful writing, my friend! I would have looked to work on a cruise boat when I was younger. I think we all dreamed of being an activities coordinator when we saw the Love Boat! Oh my goodness, now I can’t get the tune out of my head! hee hee! And may I say, you were and are a beautiful stunning woman! Gorgeous! Damn that red lipstick for giving you away! Hugs! 🙂

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      April 7, 2013 at 8:01 am

      you are the sweetest woman in the universe!

      Guess what? I applied to be the ACTIVITY Director. Haaa. But instead, they put me on the black jack tables!

      Luv U. Kiss for you and Rox. xxxx
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  • Reply
    Carolyn Hughes
    April 7, 2013 at 8:59 am

    Your post has brightened my day Kim! Cruise ships seem so glamorous but I’m they aren’t so glam behind the scenes! Loved your story about Mr Liverpool 🙂
    Take care and have a wonderful week 🙂
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  • Reply
    April 8, 2013 at 8:12 pm

    Not sure I’ll ever get on a cruise now…especially after what’s happened lately. I just lived vicariously through this post instead. 🙂

    Loved it Kim!

  • Reply
    Renee A. Schuls-Jacobson
    May 10, 2013 at 5:31 am

    I have to say, I have a friend who just quit working Carnival because of their demanding work hours. He was being asked to perform 3 times a day, every day of the week — with only two days off a month. When he told me how much he was being paid, I thought to myself: Those are slave wages.

    He broke his contract.

    I don’t know if they are going to sue him.

    As for your story, that is certainly intriguing. It sounds a lot like summer camp. Where everyone knows everything the second it happens. The grapevine is strong in those places, and there are so many eyes.

    If you were going to go back, would you still have gone off with Mr. Liverpool? Was it worth it?
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