Last Man Standing
Join Date: Aug 2008
Thanked 186 Times in 178 Posts
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LFS Proponents Have Lovely Outing
Something interesting I ran across...
September 28, 2008
A Laggardly, Fabulous Sail!
MIAMI - An aging Miami couple has just achieved a life-long dream by completing an unprecedented triple circumnavigation of Star Island in Biscayne Bay. Cameron Swaydosun and his outspoken wife Jurdie were welcomed on their return by two friends at the Miami Beach Marina, their home base.
"It was just lovely." said Mr. Swaydosun. "We've been working very hard for this day for over 15 years."
The Swaydosuns purchased their 52-foot Southern Choyana ketch from a used boat salesman in Portugal in 1992, had it loaded onto a freighter and delivered to their slip at MBM. They then spent the next 13 years and $475,000.00 USD fully equipping the boat with the very finest in navigational equipment, state-of-the-art safety gear, classic sailing literature, and flatware in preparation for their dream - and taking lesson after lesson after lesson.
"We worked very, very hard. And spent all of our children's and grandchildren's inheritance to prepare for this." said Mrs. Swaydosun. "We'd been taught that sailing in the sea is the most dangerous thing human beings have ever dared to do. And that it was just a matter of time before our pure ignorance killed us, and took several maritime regiments with us. Thank God we had Sailnet."
Despite Cameron's 25 years in the Asiatic Merchant Marines and an uncanny knowledge of knots and sail trimming - his time on Sailnet, an American based anti-sailing website for conservatives, had convinced him and his wife that any exploit beyond the safety of Biscayne Bay was not only pure suicide, but really an afront to seasoned sailors and rescue personnel the world over. The only salvation left to them in this regard, according to the paragons of Sailnet, was to obtain signoffs for each and every aspect of sailing technique, gear, and philosophy from...you got it...the paragons of Sailnet.
"We actually had the hubris to think we knew how to sail - at least well enough for coastal cruising. Boy, were we idiots!" laughed Cameron. "The mods and paragons of Sailnet made us see very quickly that sailing was not for enjoyment or adventure. It was really just a deathwatch. And these guys were willing to take valuable time off from their world-saving political and economic diatribes to tutor us on how to cheat the jaws of death in a measly sailboat. I mean, these guys guard the gates, you know? Their word is scripture. So, yes, of course, we got on board! I mean, who wants to be an ignorant sailor that deserves evolutionary threats and wishes when he is overcome by the elements?"
In the daring August 2005 launch of their attempt, the couple was tempting fate from the first turn. Winds were just over 8 knots true and seas were calm. But they knew that the fickle Bay could anger at any moment with higher breezes or wakes from a Scarab. Yet, they had received their final signoff in Sailing Philosophy from the world renown "Sailaway21", or Lord Sailaway according to his business card, just 3 days previously and were given permission to go ahead and cast off. There was no turning back.
"We were nervous. But we were prepared." said Jurdie. "Sailnet said so. So who can argue that? We had the right to be out there."
The circumnavigation took just over 36 months and covered over 80 nautical miles, wrapping up last week with their triumphant return to their slip and into the arms of their two tepidly applauding friends.
"We probably could have completed the journey more quickly, but we were told not to heel." said the couple in unison. "And anyway, as long as our pate and brie held out - we were NOT going to give up. It really was an LFS."
"That means Laggardly, Fabulous Sail silly!" cried Jurdie seeing this reporter's puzzled look.
The only time in that 36 months that the couple had trouble of any kind was late spring of 2007 when a 9-foot crazed dolphin leapt into the cockpit while they were having tea, bloodying Jurdie's nose with a vicious flipper slap.
"I was just about to throw out the drogue, employ the emergency tiller and activate the EPIRB - when Jurdie reminded me of the scorn we'd face from our friends at Sailnet." said Cameron. "So instead we removed Jurdie's injured nose with our West Marine surgical kit and made more pate from the foul beast."
"The dolphin, not my nose silly!" cried Jurdie seeing this reporter's puzzled look.
Asked if the couple had any words of advice and encouragement to the world of young, hopeful sailors the world over who yearned to one day taste the adventure of big sailing, the couple chimed in unison, "You'll never be prepared to sail big. It's just impossible. Everyone knows that. Just repeatedly read every thread in Sailnet. It's as good as actual sailing anyway. There's nothing in the ocean except death and destruction unless you are immortally experienced, knowledgeable, and prepared like Lord Camaraderie or Lord Sailaway. The rest of us are just idiots who deserve our fates."
They then introduced this reporter to these great men - who formed the small welcoming home "entourage" for this frightened little couple. The chant of "LFS or death! LFS or death!" could be heard as the couple carried the lords of Sailnet away on their aging shoulders. Their "Sponsored By Sailnet" t-shirts pressed and gleaming.
Last edited by smackdaddy; 09-05-2013 at 10:22 AM.