Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Muppet Dodge

Yo, Bert!
Back to the Duck Dodge yesterday, where the theme was "Sesame Street."  It doesn't take much for me--an overgrown kid with a daughter as an excuse to relive my childhood--to conjure up that place "where the air is sweet."  Getting a costume together in a pinch was much harder.  I knocked around being the Count, but I had no cape.  So, in a pinch, I put on the fringed buckskin shirt of my Berkeley days and said I was Buffy St. Marie; remember when she actually was a regular on  the show, representing for the First Nations?  Zanne had much better inspiration and pulled off a very good Zoe, the pigtailed, ballet-dancing, tutu-clad girl Muppet.  Very few other people in the Dodge seemed to be doing anything with the theme, except for this fellow in a very complete (and somewhat disturbing) Bert costume.  Dan wore nothing special at all.

Our skipper, Dan, and Zanne as Zoe

"Buffy St. Marie."  Or is that Jeremiah Johnson?  And, no, that is not a dead Muppet on my head.  Really. 

My biggest concern before even heading down to the boat, however, was the weather.  In the morning the wind around work was blowing hard.  Even at lunch, I felt like I was going to be blown down when I went outside.  I checked the weather station at Lake Union Crew, and the wind on the lake was gusting up to 22 knots!  In the afternoon the wind died down.  Then there was a downpour which gave way to a steady rain.  I did not want anyone to be a soggy Muppet on the rainswept deck of a heeled-over boat.  Yet none of this came to pass.  The rain had totally stopped by the time we reached Fremont, and the wind was actually very light.  By the time we'd run the course, the wind, in fact, was nearly calm, and we ended up motoring in.

The Opus and the skyline

We sailed with our usual carefree attitude.  Zanne hung out on the bow again.  I helped on sheets for a while, but as the rum soaked into my brain and the wind died there really wasn't much use.  One highlight of the voyage was seeing a new vessel, the cute Opus, which was definitely named for Berke Breathed's penguin.  The captain of the boat said it's a Scottish design that, honestly, doesn't have much room and doesn't point well.  I have since discovered that this wooden pocket cruiser was likely homemade from a design called "Wee Seal."  The spec's indicate that it's only 18 feet long, which means that, in spite of the fact that she's a fat little boat with high sides, it is passably trailerable.  The crew of the Opus said she did NOT have the normal centerboard, which would explain why she doesn't point great.  Still, she looks like a pleasant vessel.  There's a bit of discussion about the Opus and similar designs here at the Wooden Boat Forum.  The crew also said that she'd be at the Wooden Boat Festival.  Cool!

Spinnakers are always photogenic

Simply put, we always have a blast.  Good times again.  Next week:  PIRATE NIGHT!!!

The sun sets in Fremont

...and the Muppets sing a silly shanty!

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