About a year or two after I divorced my first wife, I saw an ad for a contest from Kool cigarettes. Now, if you are a faithful reader, you know I'd only smoked unfiltered Pall Malls and I hated menthol. But the prize was a 14-foot Sea Snark sail boat, so I sent in my entry.
And, by God, I was one of the winners! I think that's the only thing I ever won (other than the hearts of my two wives). They sent me a letter apologizing, because, they ran out of the green and white sails that said "Kools" on it and had to send me just the plain old Sea Snark sail (Hey, like I wanted a freaking advertisement on my boat?)
I took that bad boy out to Lake Orion and, with the aid of several books from the library (there was no Internet back then) taught myself to sail.
Why am I bringing this up? Because in my packet of precious stuff my Mom saved for me was a photo of me, Amy and Melissa, sailing in front of Waconda.
Now, any experienced sailor would notice two things. The little fluttery flag at the top of the mast is called a "tell-tale." It's to let you know which way the wind blows, so you can adjust the sail. I forget what I made it from, but I remember it had to be silk
"You don't need a Weatherman to know which way the wind blows" ~ Bob Dylan.
You might also notice that the boom seems extremely low. That was my fault. The first time I tipped it over (and you do that a lot if you are an aggressive sailor), I almost lost the mast in the lake. I just barely hung on to it with my one hand and I struggled in the water.
So, I drilled a hole in the aluminum mast, put in an eye bolt and secured it to the thwart with a leather dog leash. It sounded logical, but the next time I went a little too fast, too far, and it went over, the mast snapped at the point I'd drilled the hole and had weakened the mast.
Years later, on Palms Road, when I was up against it, I traded it to my neighbor for something or another. And that was the end of the Sea Snark.