Monday, May 29, 2006

Second Annual Collander Cup

A tale of half a birthday, a dive, a colander and a bruise.

Last year I started a Laser fleet and organized what I hoped would be an annual Laser regatta at our lake sailing club in New Jersey. Over the winter I handed off the responsibilities of Laser fleet captain to another member and he put together the second running of the regatta.

Having nixed two regattas already this year by writing about them in anticipation in this blog, I carefully avoided making the same mistake with this one. And it worked. This regatta actually happened.

The whole American branch of my family came to stay for the weekend. Both my sons, one wife, one girlfriend, one mother-in-law (sons' gf, w and m-i-l not mine) and the guest of honor, cutest granddaughter in the world. On Saturday she was exactly six months old so we held a half-birthday party for her complete with half a birthday cake.

Then on Sunday, son #1 (a.k.a. Litoralis) and I sailed in the Laser regatta. The weather was hot and sunny with unfortunately only a light patchy easterly wind. Once again we had ten entrants but only a few of the same cast as last year. Litoralis was more enthusiastic about the conditions than I was and his positive attitude showed up in the results. The event was won by our current club champion, an ace in multiple classes, Litoralis was second and I was tied for third on points with Wily Old Fox (from this story) but lost the tiebreaker.

It was the first time my son and I had sailed a Laser regatta together since 1997 (he won that one) and he was psyched up to be back in Lasers again. In between races he rocked around the lake standing in front of the mast with rudder up and only fell off once. Luckily his inadvertent dive was right in front of the committee boat where the race officer, also our webmaster, managed to photograph Litoralis in freefall, a photo sure to turn up on the club website in short order. Sadly nobody was there to photograph my son going for a second swim as he managed to slide off the deck of his Laser, and capsize it, while adopting some Laserite go-faster extreme body position on a run.

After five races, scores were tallied, speeches were given, and trophies were awarded, included a new perpetual trophy for the regatta awarded by S. my fellow fleet founder. The oldest Laser trophy in the world is the Orange Coffee Pot competed for annually in Surf City NJ ever since Lasers were invented back in the Jurassic Age. So, in line with this tradition, S. created a colander trophy for our regatta - yes it really is a metal colander mounted on a wooden base - complete with a story about how it was in honor of my cousin Collander who represented Great Britain in the Louis Vuitton Cup and was alternate crew for the British Flying Dutchman team at the Olympics in 1982. (The year is a clue that this story may not be entirely accurate.)

This morning Litoralis is complaining that he has a bruise on his backside and that he is planning to remove the deck cleats from his Laser.


Fuff said...

Blimey, that's some family racing pedigree. If I were to ask my mum about start line bias (she's a bonfide cruiser), she'd think I was talking about Newsnight or Woman's Hour

Anonymous said...

Hey Tillerman-

I didn't know that Litoralis was your offspring...


Anonymous said...


I'm just curious, do any of you know anyone participating in this year's Asia Pacific Laser Championships? Its coming up in about a week in Singapore.

Tillerman said...

Yes Dan - Litoralis = Son #1. We started blogging anonymously without explicitly mentioning the relationship but as we plan to sail some regattas together this year we decided it was time to "out" our connection.

Shopping City Chaplaincy said...

I'm curious, how big is the fleet now?

Tillerman said...

Tim - the Laser fleet at this lake club, now just starting its second year, is around 10 boats - but not all of them race every weekend. Last season a few other people raced with us occasionally too.

Carol Anne said...

Ahhh-HA! I thought the kid on his blog and the kid on yours looked eerily similar to each other!

Tammy Brierly said...

This was a fun read! Son beat dad...bruised butt...karma. LOL

What no pictures grandpa?

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