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The Athena was a glass-bottom boat.
The Simpson family took a ride on a glass-bottom boat. Looking through the glass panel in the floor, they saw the wrecked Athena on the bottom with its glass panel cracked and broken. The boat operator said it had gone down with 88 souls the week before. Marge asked how the boat had sunk, and immediately a shark appeared and rammed the glass panel of the Simpsons' boat (implying that was the cause of the Athena's sinking).