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post #11 of 84 Old 07-17-2012
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Proper spelling is for loosers.
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post #12 of 84 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: nautical language rant

I am with JS on this one. But mainly just the English language massacres.

Some that drive me nuts:

- Should of, would of, etc. No more phonetic spelling. Learn the language
- Irregardless. No such word. Period.
- To, too and two. 3 different words.
- There, their and they're. 3 different words
- Were and Where. 2 words.

I am certainly no English language expert but these are really elementary(as in, I learned this in elementary school) components of our language.

And enough with "kewl". It isn't cute anymore.

Rant over.

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Last edited by Tim R.; 07-17-2012 at 12:19 PM.
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post #13 of 84 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: nautical language rant

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Originally Posted by jsnaulty View Post
I just can't stand it any longer! (no, this is not a goodbye thread, sorry- besides no one would care if I left) . I have put up with "births" instead of "berths" for 20 years on various forums and before that , bulletin boards, but I just can't do it any more!. Latest statistics ( I checked ) suggest that very few people have babies on boats, but if by some mischance they did, it would be in a 'berth".

I have "wenches" on my boat, but they are the ones who crank the "winches". It is "should have, or should've" not should of. Can you drive, hike or bike on an "anchor road"? How do you repair a spongy "front deck" or would you rather fix the "foredeck". "Topsides" are part of the hull, not the deck. (If you ask the painter to paint your red boat's (I did envy Treilly's E35-3 's 'cordelia') 'topsides" white, thinking you finally would have a deck without bird + blueberry stains, you might be surprised when you go to see her at the job completion)

These are all examples taken from just the previous day on Sailnet. Am I being too picky, and we should just ignore these 'mistakes'? (which are repeated ad infinitum in these and other such places. Or should we point out proper nautical usage to preserve our beautiful and meaningful words.

I have just co-authored a book on Medical Terms and their meanings. Sort of a dictionary, but with the derivations, literal meaning of the term, and examples of proper usage. Using such a text would not be remiss in the nautical field, and they may well exist. I think I'll look for one when I finish the rant, or you can and add it to the discussion that I hope ensues. In medicine, people's lives depend on all the multiple people involved in modern medical care understand and use proper terminology. I would never suggest to a surgeon to 'remove some of the gut' instead of "I think a partial resection of the distal ileum and re-anastamosis is needed".

I wonder how much nautical 'yelling' and tears involves this lack of understanding the terminology. I don't know how many times I have been peaceably anchored, with a chesapeake squall on the way. Up comes a very large, new looking boat, with the helmsman screaming over the thunderstorm to the crewperson "wrap the rope around the little thingy on the front" , followed by a loud dialog about which thingy, tie what?, where? , fending him off, etc. If he could just say" cleat the anchor rode" and the crew understand him, things would be different. (admittedly, if you thought "road" instead of "rode", the result, in this case, would be the same.

I posit that there would be much less miscommunication, tears, angry silences, and other anger manifestations that you know have to eventually apologize for if you and your spouse or crew could use and understand the proper terms. If you know the proper terminology, use it and explain it to others on your boat. If you don't know it, learn it! I don't think nautical terminology exists to make us elitists or to sound important and nautical to landlubbers, but to facilitate clear discussion and action.

end rant

steve naulty
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Well said.

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post #14 of 84 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: nautical language rant

Just to add another to the list of common English errors: using an apostrophe to form the plural (such as "marina's" to mean more than one marina). On the whole I'm shocked by the amount of English errors in posts here, but then I work with language for a living and take it seriously.
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post #15 of 84 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: nautical language rant

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Originally Posted by BubbleheadMd View Post
I am in total agreement.

I have told my racing crew that although sailing terminology is arcane, it's still totally functional and will be used.

I told them that after their first couple of races, that I will stop referring to things as "the blue flecked line, the black line, or that line over there".

It's not that I get off on "talking like a pirate", it's that these words still refer to jobs and equipment and there is no modern terminology to replace them.

So, HTFU and learn the terminology!
Just to be sure everyone understands - arcane does not mean obsolete or old fashioned, it means obscure or specialized. Every unique function or trade or passtime has its own arcane language which must be learned to communicate precisely in that field.

And by the way.... it's SALOON, not SALON. You get you hair cut in a salon, you drink & eat with your shipmates in the saloon.

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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post #16 of 84 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: nautical language rant

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Originally Posted by jsaronson View Post
Don't have a clew what you are talking about!
We (I) often take out novices who are along for a joy ride, then we (I) ask them to cleat lines or hand them to me etc without any warning or training. That's why my mainsheet is blue, main halyard blue/white my spinnaker halyard and topping lift are green and white.

yes, dock lines run through chocks, not thingys, the boat has a head, there is a mainsail and a jib. If the metal thing hits you in the head, it goes 'boom'.
Colour coded lines are something I have used for decades - ever since all white was the norm. I used to have dock walkers comment on the "carnival" atmosphere they created.

They are very useful for newbies - "pull hard on the blue line" - but they are also useful when sorting out the knitting on the cockpit sole after a spinnaker gybe. They simply make things quicker and easier to identify - they are still called sheets, guys, halyards etc.

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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post #17 of 84 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: nautical language rant

I have been working to rebed all of my deck hardware. With one person on deck holding a bolt head, and one person below turning nuts, it is amazing how much more efficient it is to use, "port", "starboard", "fore", and "aft", rather than yelling "the one to your right... NO MY RIGHT...arg"

One other common terminology error. The mast head light is the steaming light part way up the mast, not the stuff at the... um... mast head.
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post #18 of 84 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: nautical language rant

I remember being dressed down back in the FC days by an uppity ship's captain dude regarding the term "deadlights". He assured me I was wrong in my usage. I wasn't.

The point is, terminology is never as precise as language nerds want it to be. And those that pretend to know it inside and out can be way more annoying than those that don't have a clue. Because they still get stuff wrong.

As long as you walk your crew/guests through the basics, then only expect from them what you've shown them (i.e. - not yell at them to "cap the damn hawse pipe!" if you've not shown them what that is), the yelling and screaming is typically pretty minimal.

This is one of the problems with sailing forums. It's typically all about form and not function.

Just get out and sail for crying out loud.
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post #19 of 84 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: nautical language rant

This isn't about grammar Nazism. This is about using effective terms in a specialized setting: Boating. Specifically: Sailing. There's a lot of gear, mechanisms, lines, etc. on a sailboat. When there is more than one individual operating the boat, clear, precise and succinct communication is absolutely necessary.

It could mean the difference, for example, between a successful crash tack and an unfortunate t-boning.

Jim
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post #20 of 84 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: nautical language rant

prettie winches?isn't a winch just a winch....oooh i get get you,all wenches are kindof pretty around closing time,i think its called lowered expectations
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