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Old 10-18-2003
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Beauty and The Beast, What is Either To Sailnet Members?

When I bought my Columbia 22 in ''86 I thought she was just about the ugliest garbage scow afloat! She lacked shear, aspect ratio and, through the eyes of a son of Gloucester, a second mast and some gaffs! Six years later, I sailed her to the mooring of her new owner. As I rowed ashore, I stopped to look at her, afloat for the last time. As I drifted there, I thought of how beautiful she really was. I thought of the miles we sailed together, how she had served as my home for five years and how, if it hadn’t been for the pride and honor she had instilled in me, I may not have survived the depression that other aspects of my life had cast upon me. Olde Blue was more then just a boat; she was my best friend. I cried.

Form follows function and “old salts” may look upon a vessel with a critical eye but don’t confuse seaworthiness with beauty, or lack of it. For each and every boat there are those that will find her attractive as well as those who find her ugly. What is pleasing to your eye matters only to you. If you buy a boat because she appeals to someone else, you’ll have just that, someone else’s boat! Don’t be sold on a J24 when what you have in mind is a Westward Ho!
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