As you may already have noticed*, interested parties have now been invited to apply for the post of Ocean Master.
No doubt you're all furiously updating your CVs, honing your letters of application, and telling your boss where he can stick his lousy job, because "I'm gonna be an OM!" You may well be wondering, however, what happens next? How best to prepare for the next stage of the selection process? Well, as one of the most recent Shiny New Hands, I am in a good position to tell you about the way it all happens.
Second-stage hopefuls are invited to a secret location to participate in selection tests
The morning of the first day is a meet-and-greet, followed by an address by Our Leader. After that, we break for lunch.
As you have probably noticed, the Ocean Masters are a literate erudite lot (with the obvious exception.) This is of course one of the basic requirements of the job. Although that's mostly selected for in the CV sifting stage, we kick off after lunch with an essay test, just to establish that you're OM material. This might sound a bit daunting, but it's really not. I don't know what the set question will be this time around, but I seem to recall that when I applied, the question was something like "How, if at all, is van Fraassen's constructive empiricism an advance on the logical positivists' philosophies of science?" So, really, as you can see, just a formality. Nothing to worry about.
The first day's testing complete, the applicants are dismissed, but this is far from the end; although they are released to the OM barracks for rest, sleep is not permitted. Testing will begin again at 8am, and any applicant who falls asleep in the meantime is excluded from the selection process. Ocean Masters are marked by their endurance, if you can't make it through the selection process without sleep, you'll never make it in the real world, soldier!
Ocean Masters must be able to evaluate and dispense judgement on situations quickly and accurately. This is tested the following morning on the shooting range. The range is a scale replica of Alpha Island on Midnight. The applicant is must advance along a predetermined route, along which targets representing ban evaders, filter evaders and alt abusers pop out of the doors and windows. Applicants are judged on both their speed and accuracy, with points knocked off for any greenies killed. Only the eight highest scoring applicants will progress past this stage.
After a simple meal, the selection process concludes with the surviving applicants participating in a single elimination, no-holds barred blindfold martial arts tournament. This takes place in an octagonal caged arena in the centre of the compound. I really have only two pieces of advice here. The first, though you won't be told this, there will be a range of weapons strewn around the arena walls - if you can find it, I recommend the bat'leth. The second - watch out for those tigers! (I asked Cleaver later on which part of the OM role this stage tested, but he just shrugged and gave me a manic grin.)
So, as you can see, whilst there's quite a lot of mystery and mystique surrounding the process, Oceanmastery really is just like any other job.
*If you have not yet noticed, then I'm afraid that you've failed the first test. Better luck next time!