by Pam

Life is sailing and sailing is life. I once had an interesting conversation with John Kolius about the similarities of sailing and life. I’ve continued to compare my sailing experience to my life experience ever since. Struggling, climbing uphill and beating upwind, accelerating, running and enjoying the ride downwind or just reaching around, hanging out and having fun but not getting anywhere. Ever asked yourself what your favorite point of sail is and then looked at your life to see if you mimic that in your life experience? Interesting concept.

Earlier this year I attended a seminar with Eduardo Cordero out at Rush Creek. All day long, he repeated on his bull horn in his Venezuelan accent, “Pom, you’re sayween in dirty air … tock.” At the end of the seminar he summed up what he saw on the water and said he noticed that a lot us really like to sail in dirty air. Now the attendees at this seminar weren’t exactly slackers but still many were habitually sailing in dirty air. He asked one of our better sailors why she let people do that and she responded that they were so far back, she didn’t realize they were sailing in dirty air and she didn’t realize they didn’t know it. I’ve been on the committee boat before and observed (with some coaching) that some of our really good sailors do the whole dirty air thing at times as well.

Think about that. If sailing is life and life is sailing, do you realize when you’re sailing in dirty air in life? It takes me a while but eventually I step back and realize that I’ve gotten caught up in this or that drama and it feels just like sailing in dirty air. When clean air comes along you know it instantly. My older brother and Scott Young continue to blow me away as two people that do an amazing job of living their lives in clean air. Scott tacks constantly on the race course to stay in clean air and if you have a conversation with him off the race course, drama rarely enters the conversation. It’s rather cool to have people like that in your life because they just lift you right up and keep you on course and pretty soon you’re just cooking along in clean air, having fun and enjoying life.

So, this year, let’s help each other on and off the race course and if you see someone sailing in dirty air, holler at them to tack.

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