If I was ever planning on taking a cruise again (and I'm not), I'd have serious doubts about buying tickets on any Carnival ship:
Thousands of passengers on a towed cruise ship will disembark in San Diego, California, Thursday with their own tales from a three-day ordeal that left them without air conditioning and hot showers. Their diet became Spam and Pop Tarts rather than steak and chocolate mousse.
And while Carnival Cruise Lines said Wednesday that most passengers knew that the Carnival Splendor's crew was doing the best it could, there were reports of passengers pledging not to take up the company's offer of a free replacement trip.
The vessel, which became stranded Monday after an engine-room fire off the coast of Mexico, is expected to arrive early Thursday, Carnival Cruise Lines CEO Gerry Cahill said at a press conference.
"We've been in business for 35 years," said Cahill. "We've never had anything like this happen before."
Wait...what? Maybe Carnival hasn't had a ship disabled for four days before, but the cruise line sure as hell has had ships catch fire (the Ecstasy in 1998, the Tropicale in 1999, and the Celebration in 2000), catch disease (a "Norwalk virus"-like stomach bug on the Conquest in 2002), and the propulsion system screw-up that hit the Ecstasy on the Cozumel cruise my wife and I took in 2005, delaying our return to Galveston by almost a day. Worse than that, they didn't fix the problem before reboarding, and the ship ended up stranded (does that sound familiar?) off the coast of Mexico.
But it could have been worse. The beleaguered passengers on the Splendor could have been on one of these ill-fated cruise ships.
Antonia Graza -- Ghost Ship (2002)
Where else are you going to see a pre-Good Wife Juliana Margulies enter the spirit world with the help of a ghostly little girl? It's all very Ringu-esque, except not really scary.
MS St. Louis -- Voyage of the Damned (1976)
Think eating Pop Tarts and Spam is a hardship? Try being a Jew in WWII turned away by Cuba and the United States, then sent back to Europe where there was a 66% chance you'd end up dying in a concentration camp. Bet that bus ride back to Long Beach doesn't sound so bad now, does it?
RMS Titanic -- Titanic (1997)
I admit it: I cried at the end of this movie. My tears of joy at Leonardo DiCaprio's death simply would not be contained.