Saturday, January 30, 2010

Music for Firdays; "Maahi Ve"

How could I have ignored Bollywood up to this point? Huge dance productions, catchy beats, romantic leads chastely flirting. Who cares if I don't understand a word of it, this hyper energy always has me smiling.

And yes I know of the Bollywood viral YouTube video with "false friends" subtitles (words that sound similar in different languages).

My loony bin is fine Benny Lava

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

F-bombs and the art of sailboat racing

I curse a lot when I'm sailboat racing. Since I've raced mostly by myself over the last 30 years, my cursing is quiet, inaudible to someone outside the boat, mostly under my breath. The cursing can be explosive and continuous. I curse my stupidity, or curse the fates that put me on the wrong side of the wind. I occasionally curse my poor boat for being so slow, or the stupid weather boat that has me locked into a slow death from a leeward competitor. I curse the slow roll downwind that continues into a capsize, or the radical windshift that sends me into the drink. I curse the bad starts or the starts I'm over early. And so on.....the mistakes are endless, the expletives keep rolling out.

I never curse a fellow competitor, or on the rare occasions I sail a double hander, I never curse the crew; to them I'm exceedingly polite, (well maybe not to the competitor who fouls me with a smile or, worse yet, an air of indifference, but I never curse a competitor even then). Cursing stays onboard; loud enough for me to hear and no one else.

This is why the following YouTube had me laughing.


Australian Cherub sailors..........

Your f$%&@ng using up all my heartbeats!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Traditional and Bolger type boats; MASCF

As a young buck, thrashing around on some very high powered dinghies, I didn't give much mind to traditional boats. Pretty, yes, but why would someone bash around on those slow pokes when one can scream from one capsize to the next. With age has come some softening. Some of this is my love of history, and some is my love of variety; there is just so much beige plastic decks and white production hulls that one can absorb before the brain screams; ENOUGH! Today I'm much more apt to run over to a skipper of a Luders 16 than I am in chasing down the crew of an Australian 18. This doesn't mean I would run out to buy either one of those boats; but perhaps in my dotage I've begun to appreciate the beauty of traditional yachts and the people who build and sail them.

Which brings me to the St. Michaels Mid Atlantic Small Craft Festival. I added to the end of this post that Bob Blomquist and I have gone to the Mid Atlantic Small Craft Festival the past two years, but unfortunately, I couldn't make it this year. Bob is a boat builder with many different home built craft under his belt. He has built probably the fastest Bolger Light schooner which he has brought to the Festival in previous years.

(Click on pictures to get higher resolution).

But this year he decided to bring a restored Penguin. They have a sailing race at the Festival, a one lapper and there are usually over 60 sailing craft at the start line. It's a zoo but a fun zoo. Well this year Bob and his 11 1/2 foot Penguin Won!!!..... beat all those larger traditional boats in about ten knots.

Bob in his restored lime green Penguin.

First leg of the sailing race;

Bob won on the upwind legs and though most of the festival participants aren't racing sailors, by most rights he shouldn't have beaten the larger craft with more sail area. And that is the Achilles heel of traditional craft. With their barn door rudders and shallow centerboards, they just don't go upwind as well as the more modern sailing craft. And there are plenty of dinghies that are faster than the pokey Penguin.

Here is a picture of the 2008 MASCF sailing race where a Classic Moth (all varnished I may add), all 11' to the far right in this picture, a small racing dinghy also vanquished the entire fleet in the MASCF sailing race.

And from YouTube, the 2008 Mid Atlantic Small Craft Festival. Bob Blomquist and hs Bolger Light Schooner are featured at the end of the video.......

(change to 480p for higher resolution video)

I'm planning to attend MASCF this year. These festivals really do capture the joy of boating.

Music for Friday: Red House Painters; Song for a Blue Guitar

Melancholy song this week, incongruously attached to a travelogue.

Song for a Blue Guitar from be_sides on Vimeo.

When everything we felt fails
Then some music, soft and distant sails
But it don't sound like it did before
Then I know I'm left with nothing more
Then my own soul

When pretty pictures face back
But your coats aren't hanging on the rack
And blue water turns to
A place that I can't get to
A place that I can't
v In a room all I feel
Is the cold that you left

Through the air all I see
Is your face full of blame

What's left to see?
What's there to see?

In the room all I feel
Is the cold that you left

Through the air all I see
Is your face full of blame

What's left to see?
What's left to see?
What's left to see?
What's left to see?

Thursday, January 21, 2010

YouTube of Dock Action; TP52

I'm being lazy. Don't think I can write more than a couple of sentences so let's go to YouTube. I'll even relent to feature keelers.

Excellent video by the Quantum team on the shoreside action from the 2009 TP52 Med circuit, the Portiamo regatta.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Music for Friday; Band of Skulls, "Honest"

I liked the music so much in this sailing video that I emailed the videographer for the bands name. The band is "Band of Skulls" and here is their acoustic version of another of their songs "Honest". Very nice!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Small Water sailing

There is an amusing thread over at the Sailing Anarchy forums, about an English bloke who ventures forth on a canal in the 10' 6" Mirror dink to get to a waterside pub just up the way.

It reminds us that the Brits and others sail, and even race, on some very small waters that, in the States, nobody would consider suitable for sailing.

There is one small water venue that I am familiar with in the good ole US of A, a venue the Classic Moths try to go to once a year; the Cooper River SC, just outside of Philadelphia, PA, on a dammed up river of about 240 meters at it's widest. Our current Classic Moth National Champ, Mike Parson, hails from this Cooper River SC and the shiftier the conditions get, the more Mike motors to the front. A pic of Mike at this years Nationals..........

A video from France that shows Ponant class sailboats short tacking on a very narrow body of water...........

My post on the Brigham Scows, another river class is over here.

Music for Friday: Frederik, Kids and Winter

Well, before Christmas, we got 22 inches of snow, then rain washed most of it away and this past week we got 2 inches more. I see the Midwest and England have been laboring under major snowstorms. It is, after all, winter in the Northern Hemisphere; snow is part of it. As adults, we cope, we shovel, we can't wait to get our cars back on the road. For the kids, it's another universe.

For the kids, Winter, with music by Frederik......

Sunday, January 3, 2010

16X30 Sailing Canoe; EZ build Gilbert design

I know of several sailboat classes that have been reborn after going bust, but I know of only one where the class is being revived despite most of the existing boats (built pre WWII) being safely ensconced in museums.

John Summers has developed a stitch and glue plywood 16X30 sailing canoe; the 16X30 being the premier American racing sailing canoe that existed up till 1933 when Brits Uffa Fox and Roger DeQuincey thoroughly trounced the Americans on their home waters and the resultant new class rules produced the modern International Canoe class (the International Canoe just recently revised their rules again).

John has taken the lines of a hard chine Gilbert sailing canoe (circa early 1900's) and offers detailed set of plans through Antique Boat Museum . John writes the interesting history of bringing the 16X30 sailing canoe back to modern times over at the online "Canoe Sailing Magazine".

16X30's are being built and John sent me some photos of activity from 2009.

I had a chance to sail the round bilged Tomahawk 16X30 a couple of years ago. An interesting ride but I'll leave that to another post.

A YouTube video on 16X30's sailing and pictures of the original and prototype Gilbert canoe.

Virtual Travel; Northern Mozambique and Martinique

Two excellent videos featuring traditional sailboats in faraway places.

First up, Northern Mozambique;

"Boat trip with a traditional sailing boat (Dhau) to "Ilha do Ibo" in northern Mozambique, and then further on through dense mangrove forests to Querimba Island. Beautiful images with music of a very remote place in Africa. Tropical dream on an Island with ruins of colonial Portuguese houses that are unchanged since the late 19. century.

And from Martinique, a German produced short video of a traditional boat regatta;


"The Tour de Martinique of “Yoles rondes” (curved-bottomed craft) thus called as opposed to flat-bottomed boats. It is a week-long regatta of traditional racing sailing boats run around the island of Martinique in seven stages. The Tour des Yoles Rondes of Martinique is probably the most popular event on the island as it is followed by the whole population and by an increasing number of visitors and journalists from abroad.
I like the log hiking out aids, and the big, colorful, square spritsails. Steering these craft obviously takes some muscle and the boats look none too stable. My guess is these craft were adapted from European rowing gigs.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Music for Friday; Weezer; Pork and Beans

Weezer cleverly amalgamates several viral video stars into this music video.....