Monday, February 28, 2011

ceci et cela...

Did you know that you have more money in your pocket than GE, Exxon-Mobil, Boeing, Citibank, Wells Fargo, and the Bank of America paid in taxes last year? Now in a fair world that would be a really good thing... Not so much, if you only have a dollar in your pocket!

Since we are speaking of small pocket change, I'm often reminded that a lot of folks who read Boat Bits have real world budgets and cringe like I do when one of the yachting magazines or upwardly mobile sailing blogs mention something as being "affordable" or "inexpensive" for boat gear that costs a years cruising budget... Even worse, I am so tired of folks that review gear and don't tell you what it costs so you have no reference point to compare it to... Ya know?

Like an article I read recently that told folks that the little extra you'd spend for a new self-steering gear over the cost of a reasonable facsimile used one was well worth the investment... OK, what does that mean and how does it break down?

Being Mr Cheapseats, I'm well up on used windvane prices so I happen to know that the going rate for a reasonable facsimile is between $800 and $1000 (you can of course find cheaper if you have a relentless drive to save pennies).

So what's a "little" extra translate into dollars?

Well, the vane in question retails for around $5000 and then there are other costs involved (suggested spares) so buying the whole rig from the company in question winds up being around $5500+. Since I went to a good school with union teachers who were able to collective bargain, I'm able to do simple math, and if A-B=C (and it does) then the little extra would be $4700... Now maybe if I was the CEO for Exxon and made $27,168,317 last year $4700 would be a little extra, but for real folks it's a frelling big chunk of money! 

Ya think?

So, comparing a silly-overpriced windvane to a used and workable unit with a phrase like "a little extra" is not something you're going to find here at Boat Bits because I know my dear readers would get all sorts of Psychotic Reaction on my ass... You might say there is just a little downside to having seriously kick ass readers!

Listening to The Count Five

So it goes...