Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: New England
Thanked 7 Times in 7 Posts
Rep Power: 10
Is it me, or does evry skipper yell?
I have crewed on lot's of boats aside form my own; three different racing ones. Each skipper accepts "green" crew and even folks that haven't raced or even sailed alot.
I tell them I have sailing experience, which I do, and that I would be happy to help in any way I can. If I am given a job, I do to the best of my ability as fast as I can. Problem arises when I don't do it a) either well enough or b) fast enough. The skippers start yelling and if it doesn't go quick enough for them, yell louder and faster.
I was on one boat where I was was mast and sewer. My job was to hoist the spinny and take the spinny into the hole when it came down. On the first set, I couldn't get the damn thing up fast enough for the skipper, so he's yelling louder and with more trucker language. Turns out that my gloves are slipping on his new, very slippery, thin halyard. Didn't matter, I wasn't doing it fast enough. Next set I took my gloves off, a little better, but unknown to me the spinny was coming up twisted. This guy (skipper) is telling me to hoist faster, the bowman is yelling at me to stop hoisting, what a communication mess. I was fed up and we had only been racing for 30 minutes in the first of two races. We mutually parted, each not liking the other.
Over the weekend I was on another boat, the skipper was pretty cool for the most part, and actually had me at the helm for the start of the second race and the first upwind leg. We were in very light air and his boat handles way different than mine as far as helm sensitivity. After 10 minutes of telling me head off, head up, head off, no so much, too much, your not paying attention to your telltales, etc. I finally said it would be best if he took over. He had the more greener sailor setting the pole and jibbing the spinnaker, but he sure didn't make it sound like this guy was doing anything right. Afterwards he said I (we) did very well for the first time on that type of boat and was tickled that he found crew that actually had sailing experience. Where was the positive feedback during the race?
These skippers have to accept that fact that they aren't Pro Sailors and mostly racing beer can races. Since they're getting free, and mostly novice crew, they should expect nothing except folks that are interested in sailing, learning, and having fun. Bonus if the person has racing experience.
I have my own boat and I never yell at my crew. If something goes wrong, we deal with it, but I never yell at anyone. I don't race on my own boat, but if I did, no yelling.
Hell, if I want a half day of being yelled at, I go to work. The goal of sailing is peace and quiet and to have fun.