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Just For Grins

Published:   |   Updated: March 13, 2014 at 10:17 AM

Just For Grins
Musings from the eccentric but undeniably brilliant mind of Doug Kelly.
 
It's disgusting to see sailboats cluttering up our waterways. What does anyone see in these bodacious boats? They've got to be the most ridiculous form of transportation ever invented.
 
First of all, it's archaic to depend on the wind to get where you want to go – what is this, the 17th century? The whole shtick depends on “tacking,” which requires heading in a direction other than the final destination in hopes of catching a favorable wind to, well, get you to the final destination.
 
The occupants of sailboats look totally bizarre as well, like bobble heads as they flop back and forth with every wave. Food is somehow cooked on deck-side Hibachis, which is crazy because even mashed potatoes fall off their plates.
 
Not even Quasimodo can safely move about in the cabin of a sailboat, making it necessary to grab anything that will break your fall. And forget about sailing in water less than 1,000 fathoms deep, because sailboats have these long protrusions under them called keels, you see, which are supposed to keep the boats upright. Upright? Hey, I thought the whole idea was to move around the water sideways, sort of like a crab. A keel is a cop-out, a contradiction.
 
The unsuspecting are lured to this asinine activity with promises of no noise or pollution and free energy. Absolute lies. No noise? You'd have to be deaf not to hear the wind slamming sails against the masts, the pulleys creaking and waves pounding the hull. As to pollution, there probably wouldn't be any were it not for the fact that everyone on the boat except the owner throws up. And free energy? That's a joke — every time the wind dies down, an outboard "kicker" engine must be fired up so the sailboat can get home amidst its own noise, fumes and pollution.
 
Sailboats? Forget 'em. They should be banned. I'll stick to boats equipped with engines and machinery built for us sane, modern folks. We want to get there quickly and comfortably, without guessing about arrival times or worrying if the wind direction will change.
 
It's just a darn shame that, with the high cost of fuel these days, few of us can afford to run our powerboats anymore. How fast can those sailboats go, by the way?
 
- Doug Kelly, a resident of Clearwater, is a book author and successful freelance writer who's worked on the editorial staffs of state and national magazines. He's a member of several media organizations as well as the Society of American Travel Writers.

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