Now that’s how you introduce a character!
I love his own romanticizing of whaling, how he talks about what oil is used to anoint kings as if to grease the machinery inside the royal head. And then he goes on to describe who makes up a whaling ship, how it’s run by white men but the harpooning all done by men from more exotic locales.
Sailing south from the cold to the warm seas. Beautiful and well written.