an even better day out

on the water just after 9, off just before 6.  6 races – or was it 7?  Quite strong at the start, and some inevitable carnage. Boats in various stages of ‘not ready’, some youngsters on vertical learning-curves. I saw two rigs down, and saved one from dropping myself, on the racecourse.

The usual at the back of the fleet – not pointing high enough, overlaying the layline, tacking too often, tacking at the wrong time.

The front of the fleet isn’t of the standard of the last few years, either – but they were an exceptional echelon, these things come and go.

A lotta fun though, a whole lotta fun. Zeb the Border Collie is my offsider in the inflatable rescue-boat. He’s been working hard – is absolutely tuckered.Loves the kids, and it’s returned in most cases.

Long after these youngsters have stopped remembering the stuff they learned at school, they’ll be using the social, problem solving, and strategic skills they are picking up through this event – not unlike Outward Bound or the Spirit of New Zealand in some respects.

Still, if we volunteers didn’t show up, it wouldn’t happen. Should be part of the curriculum, by rights. A mandatory part of turning out good rounded citizens. Sorry, I forgot – we just need to turn out good little unquestioning consumers. The gospel according to Bill English and Anne Tolley. Silly me.

good read

http://www.energybulletin.net/stories/2011-03-27/tainters-law-where-physics

A grand day out…..

I’m booked to rescue-boat for the Secondary Schools Sunburst champs this week – it’s something I do every year. I love watching the improvement in skills, confidence, watching the friendships formed, find a few I enjoy meeting too.

Today was a washout-  30-knot gusts coming through, OK if it’s later in the week when they’re on their game, but it just puts them off to have a bunfight on the first day. To say nothing of the broken gear.

So I was home by 2pm, and we took the dog for the customary beach-walk. Got a fw hundred metes along the beach, and there’s a wee lump in the sand.  Blue Penguin (and they’ve always been my favourite at sea). Can’t stand up, shivering, still alive enough to snap at us though. No sign of dog paw marks of footsteps – it’s washed up, you can see the place where the water receded around it.

So, we picked it up, quoted the band No to DoC, and walked it towards the car. I felt it was getting warmer, ( we think it was moulting, the southerly chilled it) but just near the car, it spewed up, hung it’s head, and died.

Bugger.

So we saved the band, and the pengy is buried 800 feet up, which may have come as a surprise to the wee fellow.

Then we have progressed into a mellow tea/wine/talk with Ish and Nikki – heading away tomorrow.

I’ll go back to it  🙂

Hopefully the next four days will provide better sailing – I’ll report in as it happens. I’ll have Zeb on the boat tomorrow – nothing like a Border Collie to round up the strays – this will be his 4th year. Sometimes I think its good for the youngsters – if they’re a bit anxious, the sight of a dog grinning and wagging his tail close by, sort of reassures.

Obama – tarred with the same b(r)ush…..

http://www.grist.org/article/2011-03-23-obama-administration-announces-massive-coal-mining-expansion

It (the article)’s  filtered from a pre-held slant, but the facts shine through: this is an Administration out of ideas, out of options, and in the grip of lobbyists.

I’d figured that Obama and Chu were the last hope for timely change; surely Chu would ‘get it’?

Nup.

Or maybe he does, and realises there’s no palatable answer. Certainly, digging into the coal at increased speed, with no CCS process in sight (and none with a good EROEI outcome perhaps possible) is condemning our grandchildren, and probably our children, to insurmountable anguish.

Maybe they were headed there anyway, but it was worth a shot. Shame on that man. So much for Michelle’s vegie garden. Or maybe, it’s: shame on their system – where money out-bids truth.

Reminds you of here, really……

a thought… Robert Rapier/Washington Post

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/five-myths-about-gas-prices/2011/03/18/ABaUtbQB_story.html

Inept reporting – a classic case. (an ODT Editorial).

The ODT, my local rag, has a Business and Political reporter of the senior kind, who recently blogged thus:

http://www.odt.co.nz/blogs/dene-mackenzie/146047/blogs-sidestep-journalism-rules

It’s a fair enough question, but for the fact that – in my humble opinion – the writer is as black as the kettle.

Here’s a recent ODT Editorial. Sure, Editorials are opinion pieces. Sure, the ODT spreads the task around (or someone is seriously in need of cranial assistance!).   Continue reading

Quote of the weekend – ODT Editorial……

The Government was – still is – borrowing about $300 million each week just to stay solvent;

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