Reply Sun 24 Aug, 2008 11:47 pm
Went boating today, and there were some newcomers at the dock. Apparently some friends my dad recently met. Part of what I love about boating is just hanging out with friends enjoying the sun. I also enjoy teaching people about the sport, and introducing them to something new and exciting. So in general I'm cool with new people at the lake. However there are a couple things that some newcomers do that just rub me the wrong way. Of course I (and the rest of my family) are too nice to say anything most of the time. Maybe they don't know any better, but we feel it's kinda common sense stuff that people should know. Okay, not all of it is common sense, but some should be. At any rate, here is a short list of "Rules to follow when Nick asks you to go boating"

1. Don't bring young kids without asking. I'll often say things like "bring whoever you want" and "the more the merrier" and for the most part I mean it. However water can be dangerous, and I don't know if you are a good enough parent to watch after them properly or not. I once spent the day babysitting a small child who was in the boat the whole time, while their mom was sun-tanning not paying the least bit attention. Not Cool. Even if you are a responsible parent, leave them at home first, to 'learn the ropes'.

2. Wait your turn. I am happy to teach people to ski and/or wakeboard. But sometimes smooth water is hard to find, and smooth water is wasted on someone sitting in the water trying to keep their skis straight. It bothers me when people first arrive, and say "Oh cool, a wakeboard! I'm going to try that" and start to pick up a life jacket. Instead, say things like "Do you think I could try to wakeboard sometime today?"

3. Notice the average time each skier goes for, and try to follow it. I could ski for a half hour straight too, but I don't. It isn't much fun for everyone else, especially the driver. If you keep it short the first time, you can do it again later.

4. Tubing is for rough water. Everyone loves a good tube ride, but it is just as fun (or arguably more fun) in rough water then it is smooth. On a small lake, pulling a tube in circles will just rough up the water for everyone else. This will cause them to go "well, its rough, i guess we'll tube now" and suddenly a once smooth lake is now infested with boats spinning recklessly chopping up the water. When nobody wants to ski/wakeboard anymore because the lake is too choppy, then you can ask for a tube ride. And most likely, we will have gotten it out of the garage by that point.

5. Swim on the side of the dock. Notice how everytime someone skis, the boat comes about 5 feet from the end of the dock, so the skier can drop of at the ladder? That means its probably not a good idea to swim there. Also, it'd be a good idea to swim on the OPPOSITE side of the dock that the boat sits on.

 
jespah
 
  1  
Reply Mon 25 Aug, 2008 04:25 am
@Nick Ashley,
Ah, motor. Sailing is a tad different, at least it was when my folks still had the boat. I absolutely agree re kids. The water's a dangerous place no matter what the weather is like and even the kids are wearing life jackets. There still needs to be attention paid.
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  3  
Reply Mon 25 Aug, 2008 09:01 am
@Nick Ashley,
How about not inviting a bunch of friends to sail when you, and all the friends don't know how to sail?

In San Diego, a friend of mine rented a boat and insisted that we all join her on the outing because she'd already paid for the boat. So we all trudge out there and get on the boat and into the middle of the water before we realize that she doesn't know how to sail.

The wind picks up and starts driving us right into the shore. She's barking commands that don't seem to do anything as we head right into the rocks. So a couple of us decide to ignore her at the last minute and do what we think will save the boat. It worked, but we came so close to the shore that we snapped a guy's fishing pole (and he started yelling at us from the shore).

We had to call the company we rented the boat from and have them come out and tow us back in, and as soon as I got home I started reading up on how to sail. I didn't think it was that useful a skill, but I didn't count on being invited to sail by people who don't know how to sail.
Nick Ashley
 
  2  
Reply Mon 25 Aug, 2008 10:19 am
@Robert Gentel,
LOL - yeah, that's pretty funny. Did she think she knew how to sail? I would assume you couldn't rent one without at least sounding like you know what your doing.

Reminds me of another funny boating story. After graduating college a group of us go to table rock lake in Missouri to celebrate. I'm on the jet ski, and everyone else in in the boat, with my best friend skiing behind it. So I find a ski rope underneath the seat, and decide to hook it up, then ride up next to the skier. I threw him the rope, and the gradually pulled out the slack. The end result is he was skiing behind me now, and not the boat.

Well unfortunately patrol saw the whole thing and pulled us over. As I'm talking to the patrol, I realize that my buddy is now floating in the middle of the lake alone. So he tells me to go pick him up, and come back. I can't do that, because the battery is dead on the jet ski (we had to jump it to get it started, and we hadn't used it enough for the battery to charge back up).

So the boat has to pick up the skier, then comes over to the patrol where we get a ticket for driving too close to a skier, and another for pulling a skier without an observer (in Iowa mirrors are good enough.. not so in Missouri). After all is said and done, we had to jump the Jet Ski using the boat battery in the middle of the lake.. probably not the safest thing. That was just a start to one of the most memorable vacations in my life.. the $120 for the tickets was well worth the memories in my mind.
Robert Gentel
 
  2  
Reply Mon 25 Aug, 2008 10:26 am
@Nick Ashley,
Nick Ashley wrote:

LOL - yeah, that's pretty funny. Did she think she knew how to sail? I would assume you couldn't rent one without at least sounding like you know what your doing.


That's the part that confounds me as well. Because it sounded like she made perfectly clear that she had no idea how to sail because she had an emergency cell phone number to call for "when there are problems".

Now tickets on the water is something I've never heard of anyone getting.
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Mon 25 Aug, 2008 10:44 am
BWI (boating while intoxicated) leads the list where I don't go sail...

(followed by drowning while drunk, but I think they don't ticket for that)
0 Replies
 
Joeblow
 
  2  
Reply Mon 25 Aug, 2008 06:22 pm
Let me add to the list:

The captain is in charge. Pay attention if you’re getting direction. Do what you’re asked " now.

Don’t say you know how to swim and don’t need a life jacket if you’re skiing or boarding or tubing.

No cocktails before you ski or board or tube. Gawd.

Watch your wake around moored boats. Slow down. No. Slower. Really.

Use a second anchor line if you’re at the sand bar on a windy day.

No matter how nice the people in the boating culture seem to be, they don’t appreciate it if you don’t try to control your boat by hopping out and grabbing hold where situations dictate. That means you. Don’t expect me to do it for you. Make an effort. I’ll happily assist if you’re trying. I’ll grudgingly assist because I have to, to protect my boat, if you’re not. Asshole.



0 Replies
 
OCCOM BILL
 
  1  
Reply Mon 25 Aug, 2008 06:56 pm
Never be the last person out of the boat to take a dip while in the middle of the ocean. I once had to swim flat out for five minutes to barely catch a fast drifting boat.

Never ever, and I mean never, run out of beer while fishing.

Insist on contributing for gas to the extent you can afford.

Never choose to wait out a "light sprinkle" on the mooring buoy instead of taking the tender to shore. I did this once and out of nowhere wound up dead center of a vicious electrical storm. Lightning was striking so close it was pulling my hair towards the strikes. One hit so close that I felt it go up my leg and out the hand I was using to steady myself. The girl I was with was on all fours in the little cabin, felt it too, and never stopped screaming until I paddled us to shore and got her inside the condo. In truth it would have been a wicked cool experience, but her screams couldn't have contained more terror.
0 Replies
 
margo
 
  2  
Reply Mon 25 Aug, 2008 09:02 pm
Watch the tide is always a useful tip!

Recently we pulled up on a beach, in Sydney Harbour, which is tidal, and regularly got up to move the boat as the tide went out. Water was pretty shallow.

A large group of people sitting near us watched us move the boat out a couple of times.

Turns out they owned the boat that was left high and dry on the sand and rocks.

They didn't know about the tide Rolling Eyes I couldn't believe them - they could see what we were doing, and they were only about 50 yards from their boat - which is getting higher and higher out of the water.

I cannot imagine how those people got a boating licence - or pehhaps they didn't - but they had a reasonably powerful boat, so would need one.

They wanted us to pull them off the rocks - but they were too firmly stuck.

Idiots! Evil or Very Mad
0 Replies
 
jespah
 
  1  
Reply Tue 26 Aug, 2008 04:27 am
@Robert Gentel,
Sounds like $$ was exchanged to make it possible for her to take out the boat without having to prove any sort of sailing prowess whatsoever. I imagine the rental company's insurance company doesn't like things like that happening.
0 Replies
 
Nick Ashley
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 05:59 pm
I heard a new one today. Friend of a cousin of mine had a pontoon boat, and bluntly asked my dad if he had any gas in the garage he could use. Sure, I'll give some random guy $50 worth of gas...

He was pretty rude throughout the day, so I got a big kick when he went to pull the pontoon boat out, and didn't have the trim up on the motor. He didn't scrape the propeller, but came damned close.
0 Replies
 
 

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