From sun-beaten ports in the Gulf Coast a monstrous, ungainly fleet is putting out to sea on a dramatic mission. It is the "navy" of the offshore oilmen, and never did stranger ships sail on more venturesome voyages. Some of the craft bristle with giant cranes; others grow forests of steel columns as tall as Douglas firs. All of them clank and roar with violent machinery. Alongside conventional ships built for more seemly duty, they look as clumsy as cassowaries splashing in a lake of swans.

Many more such outlandish craft will be built...

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