Captain’s Red Shirt

Long ago, when sailing ships ruled the waves, a captain and his crew were
in danger of being boarded by a pirate ship. As the crew became frantic,
the captain bellowed to his first mate, “Bring me my red shirt!” The first
mate quickly retrieved the captain’s red shirt, which the captain put on
and led the crew to battle the pirate boarding party. Although some
casualties occurred among the crew, the pirates were repelled.

Later that day, the lookout screamed that there were two pirate vessels
sending boarding parties. The crew cowered in fear, but the captain, calm
as ever bellowed, “Bring me my red shirt!” And once again the battle was
on. However, the captain and his crew repelled both boarding parties,
though this time more casualties occurred.

Weary from the battles, the men sat around on deck that night recounting
the day’s occurrences when an ensign looked to the captain and asked,
“Sir, why did you call for your red shirt before the battle?”

The captain, giving the ensign a look that only a captain can give,
exhorted, “If I am wounded in battle, the red shirt does not show the
wound and thus, you men will continue to fight unafraid.”

The men sat in silence marveling at the courage of such a man. As dawn
came the next morning, the lookout screamed that there were pirate ships,
10 of them, all with boarding parties on their way.

The men became silent and looked to the captain, their leader, for his
usual command. The captain, calm as ever, bellowed, “Bring me my brown