Friday, July 30, 2010

Compass Headings

Earlier this week I ordered a bunch of sailing books off of Amazon so I can start picking out the right kind of boat I plan to buy as well as some know-how to living aboard.

So now I'm seriously looking at boats. I'm still probably another few months out (hopefully not too much further than that but one can never tell) from actually buying one. I found a good boat for a pretty good price on and my heart started to flutter. It makes me excited and nervous at the same time. Excited for the possibilities and nervous because it is such a commitment and to me, signifies a big step forward in my life plans.

For sometime I feel like I have been at a crossroad. Time keeps pushing me down one road but there are still numerous other roads out there that I would like to take.

I feel like the life I "should" be living is the typical "get a job, get a wife, get a house, get some kids...etc." I can't really tell you where this belief that this is "typical" came from but its something I want to actively avoid because it seems boring to me and if I'm bored and in a routine, I'm not happy.

Then there's the life I would like to be living "go to grad school, get a better paying job, get some experience, open your own office...etc." Still doable and more fun but not quite enough.

Then there is the life that is somewhere between need and dream about which is "buy a boat, fix it up, sail around the world, make millions...etc." I would be OK with this.

The tough thing is fitting all the things I want to do into a livable life and be able to sustain both myself and my future family.

I'm sorry for the Quarter-Life Crisis I seem to be vomiting all over the page here but its been on my mind lately. My attempt at doing everything is hopefully going to look something like this...

1. Buy a boat/go to grad school while keeping my current job (I'm not sure which one I'm going to do first but I really want to buy a boat and if I live on it, its a much better option that renting an apartment - Cheap Rent in DC for 1 year $700x12 months = $8,400 which is money much better spent on, invested in a boat - let's be real.)

2. Having saved money by keeping my job, I finish grad school while planning and preparing for my circumnavigation. (This means fixing up the boat I bought and making it appropriately seaworthy if she isn't already).

3. Circumnavigate the globe while continuing to blog about my adventures.

4. Return home, maybe write a book, and maybe open my own office/figure out a way to get paid for sailing. 

5. Make millions.

Sprinkle starting a family, and racing in the America's Cup in there somewhere too. 

I am aware that this looks like it flies in the face of my "Unplan" post I did earlier but I am actually listing this under goals and general directions and not setting it to any kind of timeline. I'm not just floating and drifting about anymore, but taking the things I want to do most and trying to get somewhere.

Just Taking Leaps - No Big Deal!

So for this Friday, the theme is leaps.

Lately I've seen a bunch of articles regarding our (read: American's - sorry worldwide readers) inability to be satisfied with what we have. We are constantly comparing ourselves to the bigger and better and with the internet, we have more access to view the life we are not living. This can, in turn, cause one to not be satisfied and to want to do so many things that we end up not doing anything well.

Life is about taking leaps. Leaps of faith and trust in one's self to know what is best. Putting one step in front of the other and putting in the time and effort into what you determine to be worth the time and effort and making it work.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Pearls Before Swine vs. BP

Recently, I've noticed that Pearls Before Swine has taken some well deserved swings at BP. Its pretty bold for a comic strip (and a bit serious as well) and I really like it.

If you're looking for more Pearls Before Swine, you can check out and Steve Patis has a blog which can be found a little lower down on the right-hand side of this page.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Your Freezer Isn't Even This Chill

I have really come to enjoy Adam Turinas' (Messing about in Sailboats) Song for Friday posts and I'm thinking about doing something similar. Posting a song to get one pumped up for the weekend.

This weekend, the plan is to rock out and enjoy a bit of DC's night life, hang out at a full day party/bar-b-que and then off to a house-warming party on the water. I've been feeling pretty stressed lately so I've decided to take it down a notch this weekend and just chill. And frankly, there's not much better at helping me chill out than a corona and lime...

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Shark + Octopus = SHARKTOPUS!!!!

So I was checking out my traffic (Google Analytics) when I came across a blog that had linked to me (Conjuminado) from Brazil. While perusing the site, I came across a good tag-along for yesterday's Shark v. Octopus post.

Hold on to your hats and get out of the water cause its....


I just couldn't help myself.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Shark vs. Octopus

In case you are unfamiliar, there is a movie called Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus. It is a terrible movie but hilarious, mostly because I think its trying to be serious. Anyhow, I found a real life version of that online with a shark and an octopus locked in battle. Please enjoy.

In case you've seen the movie and wish to see a good graphic depicting the shark's awesome air attack, please see below.

Here is the movie clip for some reference/in case you just want to see it again.

My Blog as A Pro-Clean Energy Platform?

So I was glancing over some of my blog entries and I noticed that I seem to have a stance on clean, renewable energy that, while I knew I had, didn't realize it was as strong as it seems to come out in this blog.

Speaking of which, I've been checking up on Costner's contribution to the cleanup. It seems they have had a press conference announcing the platform where four (4) of the centrifuge devices will be stationed while they separate the oil from the water. The name of the ship carrying the four devices is called the "Ella G". Word is, it's capable of removing oil from the water but only 10ft down from the vessel, which if the oil was floating on top of the water, probably wouldn't be a problem. However, since the oil has since been dispersed, I'm personally not sure how its going to do. The idea is for the filtered water to be funneled back out and the oil to be stored in tanks. Below is a video showing a flyover of the Ella G.

Ella G Fly-By from Ocean Therapy Solutions on Vimeo.

The best I can find says the Ella G sailed earlier this month (July 8th-ish) and has been out there since bringing the number of Coster's devices that are currently being used up to 9. All 32 that BP signed a contract for, are scheduled to be in operation by the end of August. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to track down any numbers to find out if the V20 is living up to its potential but it seems that they are at least doing well.

One of the articles I read mentioned that at 1:40 into the video above, the guy mentions that they haven't quite yet gotten the amount down below 15 parts per million yet which may mean they are holding the oily water in the tanks onboard. Hard to decipher though and that's purely conjecture. And this video was made almost a month ago.

In other eco-news, Google has just recently brokered a deal to purchase wind energy (114 megawatts of wind generation as the pros say) at a set rate for the next 20 years from the NextEra Energy Resources facility in Iowa. This move makes them carbon neutral. Just FYI.

Some of my sources...
GOOD blog
Official Google Blog

Monday, July 19, 2010

I Do

I was out at a wedding this weekend in the mid-west so not a whole lot of water. Did catch a glimpse of some windmills though.

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Thursday, July 15, 2010


The title really says it all. BP says they have stopped the oil for right now. That doesn't mean permanently but at least for right now.They are stressing that the job is not done and this is temporary but President Obama said it was a "positive sign".

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Tilikum - A Whale of a Tale

Tim Zimmermann wrote a great in-depth article called Killer in the Pool about Tilikum and the trainer, Dawn Brancheau that he killed in February this year. If you have time, its a great article about whale captivity with a focus on Tilikum.

Since its was pretty recent, I thought I would also mention the dolphin that tried to escape her tank on July 4th. This was during a show at Okinawa's Churaumi Aquarium. It doesn't appear to me that (the female dolphin named Kuru) was "playing around and jumped out by accident from the momentum" as Hideshi Teruya, Manager of the dolphin section of Churaumi told the Associated Press. Looks more like 6 years was enough of just hanging out in a tank...

More info:
The Japan Times Online
Tim Zimmermann - My source for all of the above info

George Bush Sr. Needs Navigation Lessons

It seems not even a person who has held the highest office is immune from grounding every now and then. If I'm not mistaken, the saying is that there are two types of boaters who have never gone aground; those who lie about it and those who never go out. At least we now know that the former president doesn't fall into either category.

President George H. W. Bush was found grounded near his home in Kennebunkport, ME. Fidelity IV, his 38 ft Fountain Center Console, was grounded after a wave push his boat onto the beach and low tide was approaching, stranding his boat on Gooch's Beach for several hours on Monday.

1. Charts. Charts. Charts. - They're a good thing to have and look at.
2. Stay away from beaches before low tide?

No one was hurt but according to the former president's personal aide, Jim Appleby, the boat sustained some minor damage but was still in running condition after they got it off the beach Monday evening.

I also found this video of the former president having a navigation fight with the dock. Damn swells!

More Info:

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tides, Anchors and the Dropping of Some Serious Sailing Knowledge!

There is a blog I've found recently that has had some really good articles about sailing and accompanying issues. Its NauticEd and its an online sailing school that explores some really interesting issues that, as a sailor, I'm not always really thinking about.

There is one on which type of anchor is best for what kind of bottom and a really in-depth look at tides, which frankly, I thought I had a pretty good grasp on until I read this article. Most recently (today) is a tip about food packaging when chartering a boat and how a little preperation can help you keep things in order.
This picture is property of NauticEd Blog

One of the older ones, though not much older, explains why you generally have to overshoot a mark on an upwind course because of the drift down that you will incur. Stuff like that. If you're looking for some sailing knowledge, definitely check out this blog.

Shark Week is Gearing Up

Apparently Shark Week is coming up. I was driving back home today and saw this on the Discovery Channel building in Silver Spring, MD. Luckily, there was a red light and I was able to snap a couple of pictures with my phone.

I doubled-checked Discovery's website and yep.. Shark Week is on starting August 1st!
Apparently, this isn't the first time this has happened either. A couple cool pics from years past when they did this can be found here, and here.

An Evolving Plan

So two weeks ago, Girlfriend sends me an email that certainly gets me thinking. How about a sponsored circumnavigation?

Yes, I say; without hesitation.
I like that idea. I like that idea a lot.

But how exactly would we go about it? I've had a bunch of ideas floating around my head since then.

The first was to get sponsors by conducting a raise awareness campaign for a deserving charity. The only issue being that it didn't really seem...well, like a good idea. At least a feasible one. My doubts were telling me that sponsors would need more. A better sailing resume. A better campaign. A better way to bring in new sponsors for the cause and a hefty donation. Plus, I'm not really good at asking people for money (despite a couple stints working for grassroots campaigns harassing asking people on the street to support a worthy cause - I didn't last long cause I'm not pushy enough. When someone said they couldn't because of this reason or that reason, I would end up agreeing with them that the economy sucked and I was broke too so I totally understood. It doesn't make for a good fundraiser).

The next idea was start up a non-profit. Sailing for Charity or something similar. Then, Girlfriend and I could devise our route/sail plan and start taking pledges (certain amount for # of miles sailed). We could then work with sponsors and raise awareness about our trip and maybe setup a website where people could pitch in and buy halyard here or flare kit there. The funds would then go (what we didn't need to outfit the boat and food) to the charity or organization that we worked with. Hopefully the further we get, the more people will catch on and hopefully make a pledge or donation to the charity that we were working with.

I kinda liked that one since I would be able to combine two things I love doing: sailing and helping others. Helping people by sailing the world. Not a bad plan if I do say so myself...

I've done some charity work in the past and I would really like to be able to give back a bit more than I have lately. So many reasons not to. We're all busy. I'd like to change that though.. Anyhow, the project that I worked on most recently was an anti-suicide Public Service Announcement (PSA) in Maryland that my friend, Dan Gvozden, was the director and writer for (which can be found as a pure video here, the campaign here, and the facebook group here - BTW if you can get this film out there, we are still looking to put it in more school curriculums outside of Maryland). Before that, I was in a college service group and was an Eagle Scout so I'm familiar with service and charity work.

Anyhow, I think that if we can sail around the world and benefit others at the same time, that would be pretty clutch. Its all still a work in progress but I feel a bit more confident about accomplishing and achieving this dream of mine than when I started this blog.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Hold On!

I have a really good post that I just haven't had the time to write because work is keeping me busy with work! Unfortunately, you can tell that by the lengths of my last several posts...

That being said, here is nice little place holder and one of my favorite songs. I'm not sure how to link to iTunes yet (I'm sure I'll figure it out eventually) but in the meanwhile, here is a link to it at Amazon. It is "Hold On, I'm Coming" by Sam & Dave.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

NOLA - Round 2

Back in New Orleans for July 4th!

Author's note: That is a picture of the Superdome in New Orleans.
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