Re: What kind of weapon to keep aboard my new dinghy?
What, you think Blackbeard is lurking off the California coast, looking for aging 27-foot sailboats to raid?
Good old boats with fading gelcoat and baggy, 20-year-old sails don't exactly exude wealth. Who would want to rob you?
Guns on boards generally don't solve anything except the masculinity problems of their owners. Mostly, they'll rust. If you're unlucky, you'll shoot yourself, as Ernest Hemingway did while fishing. Or you'll get drunk in port and land yourself in jail.
In the unlikely event you find yourself in a fix, a flare gun will scare the hell out of anybody. Who wants to get a flare to the belly?
It's better to worry about stuff that might actually happen. Can you reef in a storm? Repair a sail? Stay awake for 40 hours while running in shipping lanes? Bleed the diesel? Climb the mast?
Bottom line: There ain't none of us getting out of here alive. Enjoy your cruise and don"t worry about unlikely things.
Shakespeare had a wonderful line: "Of all the wonders I yet have heard, it seems most strange to me that men should fear, seeing that death, a necessary end, will come when it will come."