ROUND ISLAND REGATTA: Wicked Good Family Fun

25 Aug

Round Island Regatta

ATTENTION ALL OWNERS of small sail and/or paddle craft within easy driving distance of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. You are hereby commanded to bring said craft to Portsmouth next Saturday, September 1st, to participate in the Second Annual Round Island Regatta. After racing your vessel in an informal and somewhat hilarious manner twice around a short course presenting some interesting but hardly daunting challenges, you will be regaled with beer and food and fun will be had by all.


Last year’s event, organized by my good friend and fellow SEMOSA member Charles Lassen (who actually lives on the ...

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MAN OVERBOARD RECOVERY: Testing the Sea Scoopa

24 Aug

Sea Scoopa

YOU MAY RECALL we ran some SAIL magazine MOB drills aboard Lunacy back in early June. Hopefully you also read the article that ran in the comic in the August issue (which, of course, came out in July) and have viewed the video posted on the SAIL website, narrated by yours truly. Since then I’ve been in touch several times with Robert Wright, inventor of the Sea Scoopa, one of the MOB recovery products we tested. In light of the comments he has made, I thought it wise to expand my evaluation of the Scoopa here on the ...

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Toilet Talk

24 Aug

This is toilet talk, so if you’re offended by poo, you can stop reading now.

One of the great joys of sailing is independence, but to have this independence we must take on a few shore-based functions: We must become our own electric company, our own phone company, and yes, our own sewer. We must move and store human waste, which we, as a species, have judged to be the foulest and most objectionable substance on earth.

Without a functional head, the rest of the day, cruise, weekend, or passage is at stake. A crew, generally speaking, needs a functioning ...

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Nothing about boats here…

23 Aug

When I moved down to New Orleans I was following my sister, who in turn came down here to help build the New Orleans Community Printshop. They’ve been pushed out of two spaces in the last two years, rebuilding each time, and now they’ve moved into a great place that they’re building up with the help of a sucessful kickstarter campaign. A piece of that pie was set aside for a gigantic darkroom sink, which they decided should be 8’x3′. Originally they were thinking stainless steel – very nice but very expensive- but after a couple brainstorming sessions in ...

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Bumfuzzle’s Cruising Buffoonery

23 Aug

We've often been accused of playing up our lack of sailing experience. People say things like, “They can't really be that dumb.”


To which we reply, “Au contraire, we most certainly can be that dumb.”


And I think, really, we all can be. The difference is that I don't mind admitting it. I got over impressing people a long time ago. What do I care if I appear to be a genius or an imbecile? If you need to act like a genius, it's a fair bet that you aren't one. Isn't it? And don't we all hate ...

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Welcome Artemis 72

22 Aug

You probably don’t need to know who “won” the practice race of the America’s Cup World Series, but you might want to know there was another Luna Rossa capsize, and China Team went down too, and it was not exactly a rip-roaring day, and the hot media pool is booking on how many boats will still be sailing for the final fleet race on Sunday.

Action Wednesday 2 pm – 4 pm.

Meanwhile, elsewhere on San Francisco Bay—

Photos from an Artemis Racing posting on Facebook.

And I’d be remiss to not report that l’Hydroptere sailed through the Golden Gate ...

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OLYMPIC SAILING: Does Adams Have The Remedy?

21 Aug

Olympic sailing

THIS ISN’T BREAKING NEWS, I know, but it bears repeating: the U.S. Olympic sailing team were super-big losers at the London games this month. Not one single medal. First time this has happened since the Berlin games in 1936. (Little known historical theory: some believe it was the poor performance of U.S. sailors in ’36 that inspired Adolf Hitler to attempt to conquer Europe. Just to give you an idea of how serious this is.) What is breaking news is that Josh Adams, publisher of SAIL, has been anointed as the man to set the team straight again.

Well, ...

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20 Aug

Photo by Kimball Livingston

I dunno just how my America’s Cup friends will feel about it, but the real fastest sailboat in the world will soon be ripping up San Francisco Bay.

That would be l’Hydroptere DCNS, subject of some of our favorite recent posts.

At just about 1100 Friday, Alain Thbault and company departed the pier in front of Gladstone’s Long Beach and headed up the California coast. Yeah, yeah, we know we’ve been telling you they were set for their first blue water record attempt, Los Angeles-Honolulu, and that was Plan A. Unfortunately, Plan A evaporated along ...

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STORM PORN: Casco Bay Thunder Squall

20 Aug

Thunder squall

CLARE AND I FINISHED BRINGING LUNACY back to Portland this weekend and spent the last night of our mini-cruise on a mooring at Cliff Island in Casco Bay on Friday night. Soon after we settled in a massive thunderstorm started zooming in from the southwest. The photo up top depicts its initial approach.

There was also quite a bit of lightning in the distance, but I was never lucky enough to catch a bolt of it with my camera lens. Here you see the line of wind as it approached us:

Thunder squall

At first the wind was moderate, about 15 knots, ...

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Welcome to San Francisco Bay

19 Aug

Photo © Gilles Martin-Raget

May I remind us all that the win that brought the America’s Cup to San Francisco Bay was a rescue mission. No one outside of Larry Ellison and his racing team had the wherewithalmuch less the obsession of a junkyard dogto break the Alinghi machine and come away with the prize.

Then they went and changed everything.

And now my home town is suffering a bout of anticipation fatigue, which I reckon will clear up with boats on the water, and sailing news in the sports pages rather than in finance. Meanwhile, consider

Had the Cup ...

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