A Mighty Wind

A Mighty Wind

June 11, 2007

It’s well established that I am a fan of boats and things nautical, but I will say: if you enjoy watching sailboat racing on television, or in person, you must keep a defibrillator handy when you watch golf. At least in the past, the America’s Cup featured sailboats that were pleasing to the eye under sail, but not anymore. Like a lot of sports (Baseball comes to mind.), the powers that be have tinkered with the venerable race’s format, essentially turning it upside down for no apparent reason, other than to add “offense,” in the parlance of other degraded sports. Add offense they did. The AC now is an unsightly conglomeration of different types of boats, including multihulls, that plane around the course at ridiculous speeds. Why don’t they just allow motorboats and be done with it? This is not to say any of it was interesting to watch ever. (Clarification: I suppose I should add that I did enjoy watching the America’s Cup races in the 12-meter days, not for sporting excitement but for the aesthetics. Watching sailboats in the breeze is like watching a sunset or a babbling brook. Oh, to have seen the races in the days of the J-class boats! But there is none of that in the AC anymore. Yes, this counts as an update.)

72 responses to “A Mighty Wind”

  1. While I agree that sports “tinkering” is often an abomination (e.g., designated hitter in baseball), sometimes a change is for the better, IMHO (e.g., 3-point shot in basketball, 2-point conversion after TD in football).

    • You could have a 35% top or a 40% personality as a server. I would rather have the server with a great personality. And go ahead and post, folks. Just take into account that nobody will probably see them till Jimmy puts in another retro strip. But we can go back and read them then. Like the radish retro kept showing 12 comments, but now that Jimmy has put this up that retro has 26 comments.

  2. As i wrote quite a few years about this topic, the only way that I could endure watching a sailboat race is if I were three sheets to the wind.

  3. Dan Piraro did a Bizarro strip many years ago depicting an older man in a dressing gown standing in front of the fireplace, steadying himself with a hand on the mantel. He ponders aloud “should I watch the grass grow on the lawn or golf on TV?” From the kitchen his wife cautions, “remember, the doctor told you to avoid excitement.” He replies, “golf it is. . . .”

  4. Hi, everybody. Interestingly, my name is back for the first time in several days—written as “Nancy+Kirk+in+AZ.” Let’s see what happens. (Also see if this program likes plus signs and/or quotation marks.) Here goes.

  5. Nope. It’s awaiting moderation, the quotation and plus marks are there, and my information below is blank again. Hmmm. Very strange, as the guy used to say on Laugh-In.

    • Nancy

      I think it was Artie Johnson as “Wolfgang the German soldier – Wolfgang would often peer out from behind a potted palm and comment on the previous gag saying “Verrry interesting”, sometimes with comments such as “… but shtupid!”

  6. Re 6-29-21 retro cartoon: Literally the only thing I remember about the American’s Cup is from approximately a quarter of a century ago when one of the competing boats actually sank during a race. And that a writer at Sports Illustrated joked that the scoring of DNF (for Did Not Finish) should have meant Did Not Float.
    If NASCAR racing only averaged one crash ever 25 years or so, it probably wouldn’t be any more popular than sailboat racing.

    • At the Battle of Surigao Strait, the USS Pennsylvania had radar trouble and had to be listed as present but not engaged. The USS Mississippi was slightly luckier: she got off one salvo just as Admiral Odlendorf sounded the Cease Fire. Not only was that the last salvo of the action, it was the last time one battleship fired against another one. Sinking during the race sounds tame by comparison.

  7. Yeah there are sports that I am not a fan of, but I keep quiet because people I love enjoy them (Soccer, Ryder Cup and now NBA basketball). The only thing that I remember from the America Cup is Ted Turner. Watching boats for me is not too thrilling. However watching a marathon usually is not, however when my friend Des Linden won Boston in cold rainy conditions it drove me to tears. Basically I enjoy completing them and not watching others. The same held true for golf, but I don’t have time or money for it. I did enjoy Tiger, soap opera and all.

    Speaking of marathons, I plan to walk 26.2 miles this weekend, probably on Saturday. I just looked at my log and I have completed over 750 miles this year, mainly going 3.75 miles 4-5 times a week. On weekends I have completed walks of 15 miles 8 times, 20 miles 5 times and this will be my third marathon of the year. Walking does not have the same impact on my body, especially my bionic hip as running would. I am lucky to have found a shaded park near my house.

  8. I can understand watching the America’s Cup for the aesthetics, since I’m currently watching the Tour de France for the scenery.

  9. “…if you enjoy watching sailboat racing on television, or in person, you must keep a defibrillator handy when you watch golf.”

    That is a great line! Well done!

  10. There are three regattas all former America’s Cup yachts that are available for racing in St. Maarten.


    I was going to do this about 5 years ago, but the boats had to move because of hurricane.

    This is still an excursion that I plan on doing some day!

    “For this cruise outing a group of us would be racing three retired America’s Cup regatta yachts: the Canada II, True North and Stars & Stripes.”

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