Monday, March 07, 2011

Self induced mayhem...

“It was the Law of the Sea, they said. Civilization ends at the waterline. Beyond that, we all enter the food chain, and not always right at the top.”
- Hunter S. Thompson

I'm not one of those guys who subscribe to the whole macho man against sea head-space and I prefer my days at sea to be sedate and untroubled by mind-numbing terror or assorted mayhem. That said, shit, as they say, does happen.

The trick is simply to do the best you can to make sure that stupid mistakes are not a part of the scenario and be able to deal with those stupid mistakes when you make them. People very rarely get into trouble at sea without there being a stupid mistake somewhere in the equation... Fact is, stupid mistakes are something of the bottom line in the sort of nautical mayhem we all hope to avoid.

Don't believe me?

Take the last sea story that someone told you where someone damaged/lost a boat, got hurt, or died, give it the Joe Friday treatment (just the facts Ma'am) and you will find a mistake or series of mistakes that led to whatever mayhem ensued.

We all make mistakes... A couple of years back we found ourselves dragging across Simpson Bay Lagoon in a category 3 hurricane, it was all about mistakes and flawed judgment... Mea culpa. I could list all of the various mistakes I made in that event but this is a blog and I'd need a very long novel format (think The Dome) to list and explain them all...

None of us like to admit we make mistakes, so around boats you hear a lot of excuses when things come to grief: it was someone else's fault, the weather report was wrong, I had right of way... The list goes on and on and on!

But the thing is, to fix a mistake or avoid one, you have to acknowledge that they exist...

Listening to Cat Stevens

So it goes