Slide in. Hook the buoy. Winch the rope. Haul up the pot. Grab the bugs. Freshen the bait. Shove it back in the drink and throttle up. Keep your feet clear of the line.

Toss out the little ones and cuff the keepers.

In able hands, this process takes less than a minute. It is repeated hundreds of times in a single day by the two-man crews manning the lobster boats of the Maine coast. It requires a practiced rapport and coordination, and is executed without small talk or idleness. A day's catch can yield treasure or chump change.

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