Monday, June 03, 2019

Saturday, December 31, 2016

My Name is Tillerman and I am an Aerobian

I haven't sailed my Laser since April. It sits there on its trailer in my garage and looks at me mournfully every time I choose to go RS Aero sailing.

The photo above is from John Dawson-Edwards' Facebook page and show John's friends in Canada loading up a trailer with Lasers to drive down to Florida for some Laser regattas.

It is true that the Laser is basically twice the weight of an RS Aero, but I had forgotten that that apparently means you need a fork lift truck to put a Laser on a roof rack.

So sad, as our next President would say.

I am an aerobian now.

RS Aero designer Jo Richards carrying a fully rigged Aero single-handed, 
holding toe-strap and boom

Monday, December 26, 2016

A Christmas Song from RS Sailing

Looks like the team at RS Sailing in the UK had a lot of fun making a video of their version of the 12 Days of Christmas.

I recognize a couple of the culprits in the front row. That's Ben Rolfe - UK RS Aero Class Social Secretary - in the red white and blue sweater, second from the left in the front row. And Riki Hooker - International Sales Director for RS Sailing - in fine voice on Ben's left. Riki came out to the US RS Aero Nationals at the Gorge in August to meet North American RS Aero sailors and learn more about how he could help grow the class here.

I am afraid I can't catch all the words of this song. It sounds like it may have been recorded after they all went down to the local pub for a few pints on the last working day before the Christmas weekend.

But I did hear loud and clear the line, "FIVE AAAA-EEER-OS!"

What an excellent idea.

I definitely need five RS Aeros for Christmas.

  • One at the lake club.
  • One at the bay club.
  • One in the garage on a trailer to take out for practice in other places.
  • One to save for important regattas.
  • And one to lend to friends.

Sounds like a plan to me.

Or maybe six?

Saturday, December 24, 2016

A Christmas Poem for the North American RS Aero Class

Twas the night before Christmas when all through the land
Not an Aero was sailing, all racing was canned
It was time for the American class to look back
On which of the sailors had been top of the pack.

In the first month of the year the boys in Seattle
O'Brien and Falk and Bottles did battle
But what a surprise - the mighty are fallen
The Frigid Digit was won by some ringer named Dalton.

Down in Texas in April they run the Spring Fling
Some handicap races - who knows what they'll bring?
The winds did blow strong for which our lads gave thanks
And first overall was the Aero of Hank.

Hank Saurage

At Charleston in April there was a wild race
From Fort to Battery, eighty four hopefuls gave chase
One Aero did enter and what a success
First "boat" overall was the Aero and Lucas.

In the Pacific North West on the Sound of Puget
The RS Aeros have become a huge hit
In CYC's Spring Regatta the racing was tight
But first of nine Aeros was incredible Mike.

Michael O'Brien

And so on to Dallas and the Spring Dinghyfest
A range of conditions gave the Aeros a test
Sounds like the weekend turned out to be a real blast
And first overall was Hank - man he is fast.

In Southern California we have a good fleet
For a Cinco de Mayo regatta they all did meet
Catherine made history of which we must write
First female to win an RS Aero event outright!

Catherine Gloster

Those dudes in Seattle sure hold lots of regattas
In May they had one called POD for what it matters
Eleven Aeros for nine hours worked hard in the races
National champion Dan won overall with five first places.

Dan Falk

On Memorial Day weekend the Aeros went to race in LA
Thanks to the hospitality of the folk at Alamitos Bay
The winds weren't too strong so nobody had to swim
Winning most of the races and first overall was Jim.

At the Wickford Regatta in June the winds blew like crazy
A dozen Aero sailors showed up. (Not your author - he was lazy.)
Doug came from Utah, Jamie from Texas. What a lark!
Nobody was surprised when the winner was Marc.

Marc Jacobi

A week after that even more Aeros came to Lake Massapoag
Which for future reference, rhymes not with rogue but with bog.
It is close to Boston and one of the best places to sail on the planet
And the winner of the day was a sailor from the UK called Gareth.

The regatta in Seabrook was incredibly hot
It's in Texas so such temps surprising are not
Five Aeros showed up to race in the heat
Hank won again! Repeat and repeat.

At the Newport Regatta we set a new record it seems
Biggest Aero regatta ever on the east coast at seventeen.
The winds were unfortunately incredibly light
Marc took first place but Pete and Christine gave him a good fight.

Thirty five sailors went to the Nationals to race in classic Gorge style
What an amazing event - we all came away with huge smiles.
Catherine was first five rig and Peter B was first seven
Dan Falk won the nines. It was like racing in heaven.

And then in September it was back to Massapoag Yacht Club
Where the winds are always perfect and they serve excellent grub.
We had six races on Saturday and on Sunday enjoyed a little squall
Marc won the regatta but good fun was had by all.

The Aero Gulf Coast Champs were part of the Houston HOOD
Eight sailors took part which is better than good.
It was hot I am told and the winds were quite light.
Marc won, but it seems Hank gave him a hell of a fight.

The Puget Sound Sailing Champs lost one day due to Songda.
What? That's an impossible rhyme so I'll just go with "wronged her."
On Sunday the winds went from twenty five knots to near calm
Dan Falk won this one beating Olympian Carl with nary a qualm.

In October the Texas Aero Fleet went back to Rush Creek
For some handicap racing and to work on technique
Ash had a problem with elbow bursitis
Another impossible rhyme so I won't even fight this.
Hank won.

At the end of October the fleet in Santa Barbara had a regatta called Goblin
Which is another difficult rhyme and it doesn't scan so please stop squabbling
My wife says this poem seems more like a saga
I think I'll take a break and have a lager.
Payne won.

Then back to Texas, to Canyon Lake for the Wurstfest
To decide who is the worst and who is the best
The famous Dion from YouTube even showed up
The winds were light and the amazing Hank won the cup.

Twas was the weekend before Thanksgiving so they held a Turkey Bowl
At Seattle's Corinthian Yacht Club on the Bay of Shilshole
Derek Bottles worked hard and did well I am told
But the winner was Carl who has an Olympic medal of gold.

Carl Buchan and Derek Bottles

Phew. Is that the lot? Did I miss anybody?
Twenty Aero regattas! That's not too shoddy.
After all of this rhyming I'm starting to think
That I really deserve a stiff Christmas drink.

Thanks to the UK RS300 Class for giving me the idea to write this nonsense.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Are the Russians Trying to Hack my Blog?

Yesterday I wrote a blog post about the selection of Tillerson as the next US Secretary of State.

Today I notice an abnormal amount of traffic to the blog, about 75% of it coming from Russia.

(There is usually not a lot of interest from Russia in my humble little RS Aero sailing blog.)

Are the Russians trying to hack my blog?

You should probably be very skeptical about any stories you see on here in the next few days.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Trump Picks RS Aero Sailor as Secretary of State

The news is out!

On this blog my son is usually known as Tiller Extension #1, but his real name (as Tillerman's son) is of course, Tillerson.

And the news has just been made public!  Donald Trump has selected Tillerson to be his Secretary of State.

I am so proud, not only for my son's amazing achievement but also for the whole RS Aero Class.

In a brief statement, Mr. Trump explained his reasons for his choice of Tillerson to be the USA's top diplomat.

I have chosen one of the truly great sailing leaders of the world, Tillerson, to be Secretary of State. Tillerson is like, smart. Like me. He must be smart. All sailors are like, smart. But Tillerson sails an RS Aero. Not one of those Sunfish or Lasers that are made in China. That makes him like, super-smart. We need to make America great again and bring jobs back from China. We need super-smart players like Tillerson to make smart deals. The people we have making deals now are stupid. Tillerson has vast international experience. His mother was born in Australia. I love Australians. Australians are like, smart people. Tillerson will bring back 70,000 factories to the US and make Mexico pay for a huge wall to keep out the bad hombres. 

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Mannequin Challenge

Thanks to Live Sail Die and Vela Mure a Dritta for posting this amazing sailing take on the mannequin challenge.

What is your favorite mannequin challenge video?

Monday, November 21, 2016

Trump Trump Trump and the America's Cup

This children's song (first recorded in 1956) was often played on the radio in England when I was a boy.

It has absolutely nothing to do with sailing, except that a sailor friend drew my attention to it. Nellie the Elephant is suddenly topical again because of its chorus line, "Trump, Trump, Trump."

That's all that seems to be on the news these days.

Trump, Trump, Trump.

"Klu Klux Klan plans parade for Trump."

"Trump may force all Muslims in the USA to be registered."

"Trump settles fraud case for $25 million."

Trump, Trump, Trump.

Can't we get back to the important stuff we used to talk about before the election like whether Caitlyn Jenner regrets not being Bruce Jenner any more, and why Tom Brady likes his balls soft?

On second thoughts... maybe not. I am really not all that interested in Tom Brady's balls.

The only bright spot in the news is that British sailor Ben Ainslie has led his team to victory over the Australian sailor Jimmy Spithill in the Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series Superbowl Cup Final (or whatever it is called) which has been held in various locations around the world over the last decade or so. (Well at least it seems like it.)

Some sailors, a couple of cars and a pontoon boat.

Sadly this does NOT mean that the America's Cup will be returning to its rightful home in England. But apparently it does mean that Sir Ben and his team will have a two point advantage in the double secret round robin Louis Vuitton America’s Cup Qualifiers and Challenger Playoffs Elimination Round (or whatever it is called) which will be sailed over about 40 weeks next summer.

After Sir Ben has won the LVACQACPER (or whatever it is called) he will finally be allowed to give Jimmy Spithill and his Australian team another good drubbing in the actual America's Cup. And THEN the America's Cup will go back to England.

I think I got that right.

Too bad there isn't an American team in the America's Cup any more.

A waste of some perfectly good champagne

So before you go back to the real news and the steady diet of Trump, Trump, Trump here is a quiz for you.

Without googling it, what does Nellie the Elephant have to do with this song?


This news just in. Rumor has it that President Trump is considering adopting Nellie the Elephant as the theme song of his Inauguration.

Trump, Trump, Trump.

Friday, November 18, 2016


Wordle from December 2013

Wordle from 2016

Sunday, November 06, 2016

The Same Girl

45 years ago today, November 6 1971, I met a girl.

44 years ago this weekend I asked her to sign on with me for life. Amazingly she said yes.

All these years later, the same girl is still with me.

Best crew ever!