Anyone who sails a good deal knows that sailing teaches you a lot more than the differences between a rolling hitch and a carrick bend, a ketch and a kedge, or a barnacle and a baggywrinkle. Sailing is an arena where you learn such vital life skills as teamwork, leadership, decision making, discipline... and how to avoid the club bore.
So, in that spirit, I thought I would look back on 2008 and contemplate what lessons I learned from sailing that have relevance in everyday life...
In January, in Airline Paranoia I learned that it's good to be paranoid. And in Airline Paranoia Revisited I discovered that just because you are not paranoid it doesn't mean that they are not out to get you.
In February, I discovered in Fear Factor that I know seven different ways to overcome fear... most of which I forget when I really need them.
In March I learned from an Olympic sailor a lesson that applies to many walks of life, Don't Get Burned Out by Practice. Good job there's no chance of me making that mistake in any pursuit.
In April I learned that I should be careful what I wish for in Ironman No More.
In May I learned in Polyphony that if you strike up a relationship on the Internet with a member of the opposite sex half your age, there may be unexpected consequences.
In June I learned in Tiverton Tilling that sharing your spouse's passion can also have unexpected consequences.
In July I learned in And Now For Something Completely Different that sometimes it's a good idea to respond to one of those unsolicited emails from total strangers. Unless it's from Nigeria of course.
In August I learned in Hidden Law of the Universe that it's pointless to try and apply my logical brain to some aspects of life. Some phenomena are just not amenable to logic.
In September the US Stock market experienced a total Meltdown, and I learned that the best response to the end of capitalism is simply to go sailing.
In October I learned in Fat Boy and Little Man that contrary to what Harry Chapin sang in Cat's In the Cradle, it can be a good thing if my son grows up "just like me".
In November I learned in Gonna Need a Bigger Boat that grandkids trump a bigger boat any day.
And finally, in December I learned in If I Had a Boat that, when it comes to experiences, quality is more important than quantity; and that if you have a dream then you should be more like Tonto.