Friday, February 05, 2010

Worst innovations in sailing: Blackjack! A blackguardly bunch -- twenty-one paths to failure

21. Cheesy computer sailing simulators that lure sailors away from real sailing into the Valley of the Couch Potatoes

20. Plastic sail slugs… on big boats that experience high loads … that get brittle… failure is not an option; it’s a designed-in feature

19. Rules that encourage bad design or compromise seaworthiness; i.e. the old IOR

18. Double wheels on thirty-two foot, $125,000 “starter” boats and big boat features put on smaller boats just so they look fast and command a higher price tag

17. Teak “LEAK” decking, EEK, what a FREEKIN' BLEAK REEK!

16. Mis-placed or undersized sail windows (best combined with tell tales that won't fly in light air)

15. “Harbor queen” designs that don’t even pretend to be seaworthy, with un-strapped batteries, poorly secured hatches and hatch boards, loose cabin floorboards, no or minimal fiddles, no lee clothes, minimal drawer catches, unreachable or missing overhead handrails, gaps in handrail positioning, cluttered side decks, inadequate cleats, and cheesy rigging

14. Oversized cockpits combined with undersized cockpit drains, easily clogged drain lines, and too damn many holes in hulls

13. Dinghies specially engineered to drop valuable parts overboard, especially when the dinghies go into the “normally inverted” position

12. Extreme swept back spreaders and rigs that can’t run downwind

11. Running backstays and complicated, delicate rigging

10. Droop hiking; a pain in the…. Oh, droop it.

9. Elimination of multihulls from the Olympics

8. Keelboats with slippery curved foredecks and slanting cabin trunks designed to dump crew overboard at all angles of heel

7. Engine compartments where you can’t even see to reach the oil dipstick much less do basic checks and maintenance without disassembling the boat and delicate parts of your anatomy

6. Supposedly great sailors who set up foundations that do more public relations than actually helping kids or other special needs groups go sailing

5. Parents who push under-prepared teens and boats into setting out to be the latest “youngest around” instead of making them complete rigorous training and preparation

4. An increasing post-911 “Rambo” mentality among some marine law enforcement personnel that endangers innocent sailors

3. “Sailing programs” that spend more time and resources in the courtroom than on the water

2. Ernesto’s special private label double-secret “Racing Rules of Sailing to Screw Other Billionaire Sailors”

1. Ernesto’s new motto to be inscribed upon the America’s Cup
(reversing Buddy Melges):

“Winning is more important than maintaining the respect of your competitors.”

(Note the genteel, politically correct, vastly improved refinement upon his previous version, "If ya ain't cheatin' ya ain't tryin' hard enough")


At 11:40 AM, February 06, 2010, Blogger Capt. Puffy Pants said...

Sheesh, all I could come up is one "worst ever". Like your list, especially numbers 18 and 13.

At 8:01 AM, March 27, 2011, Blogger Josef Roesler said...

Who the hell is Ernesto??? Are we supposed to know this?


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