Monday, February 07, 2011
43 days ago yesterday was Christmas Day so I thought I would give my readers a late Christmas present by writing about my 43rd Laser sail in 2010 thereby giving me an opportunity to repost the photo of Miss 43, who always seems to create unnatural excitement in a certain segment of the readership ever since she first appeared to celebrate my 43rd Laser sail in 2008.
It was our second day at Bitter End Yacht Club last December. I turned up at the Watersports Center on Sunday morning looking forward to some racing, but there was insufficient interest in racing among the clientele, so I decided to take a Laser out by myself for a blast around North Gorda Sound.
It was a gorgeous day. Sunny. Blue sky. 10 knots gusting to awesome. I sailed all over the bay just enjoying the experience of sailing on warm, blue water in December. It was probably snowing back home. Ha!
Actually I did a bit more than play. I tried to practice something that Kurt Taulbee had taught me at his Sailfit seminar the previous year. He had said that when sailing downwind you should be "as a surfer not a sitter." By which he meant, keep your weight on your feet so that if necessary you can stand up (and it sometimes is necessary if only to prevent that dreaded death roll to windward.)
I must admit that prior to Kurt's lesson I had got stuck in a style of having my back leg tucked under the toe strap so that my whole lower leg from knee to foot was resting on the floor of the cockpit. It felt kind of stable but it didn't really allow me to move my weight to leeward quickly when necessary. Kurt was basically teaching us to keep our weight on both feet, one to leeward and one to windward, so that heeling and balancing the boat as required could be achieved with simple transfer of weight from one foot to the other. Even after Kurt's advice in early 2009 I had never really broken myself of my bad habit, so I decided to use the week at Bitter End to develop the habit of sailing properly downwind for a change.
So I did that all morning and then went out and won the cat racing in the afternoon but that's a story for another post...
But here's something really spooky possum. Yesterday evening I was over at my son's house and they had one of those interminably long games of pointy handball on the TV. You know, that game that Americans call "football" even thought they play it with their hands and their so-called ball isn't even round, as opposed to real football that the rest of the world plays using their feet and a round ball. (Hence "foot" "ball". Duh!) I think it might have even been the Pointy Handball Cup Final or something.
Anyway, during this weird game I occasionally saw some strange dude with long hair prancing around at one end of the field, and he looked just like Miss 43. Perhaps he was her brother? He even had the same number, 43, on his shirt. Actually I wasn't sure at first whether he was a player or some rogue fan running on to the field because he didn't seem to be involved in much of the play. When the pretty white boy on the other team threw the ball in the air, Mr. 43 always seemed to be running the opposite direction from where the ball where was going. I guess I don't really understand pointy handball.
So is Mr. 43 really Miss 43's brother? Or perhaps he's a reader of this blog and was wearing #43 to express his appreciation to me for posting Miss 43's photo occasionally? Who knows?