Monday, February 12, 2018

Things they never told us - Boat Snobs

"So, what kind of boat do you have?"
One with sails.
"Funny, but what brand? Who built it?"
I don't know who exactly. I'm sure it was more than one person but the brand is a Morgan. Catalina Morgan to be exact.
"Oh, OK. Nice. (insert awkward silence) Excuse me I need to talk to someone."
OK. Nice not talking to you. Dick.
"It's Bob!"

At times you meet other sailors at a gathering and the first thing they want to know is what boat you sail. If you answer correctly then the conversation continues otherwise you get the cold shoulder. Not everyone we meet does this but on the rare occasion it happens and it will piss you off or make you laugh.
There was one time I was surrounded by big money boat owners that all knew each other and I was the new guy. I was also the shortest but I'm sure that had nothing to do with it. I knew the question was coming and it was eventually asked. It's actually a question for more than your boat brand. It's a question about you and whether you are worthy of inclusion.

"So Paul is it? Nice to meet you. What are you sailing these days?"
Oyster 56.
"Wow! you don't look like Oyster material Really?
No not really. Actually I sail a 1989 Morgan 44. She only has one hull and two sails but 
I do have five solar panels!
"I see. Well here, stare at my back will you? I have a really cool dive shirt with a nice 
logo from a place you will never sail to."

That actually happened though the dialog was a wee bit different. It really was a cool dive shirt. Amazing it fit over his head.

There was this guy who stopped by the boat to chat once. He was looking to purchase our dinghy. He told me his sailboat was smaller, which I knew because he was anchored right next to us. Duh. He asked me if I knew the people on this other boat. I didn't. He explained that he had run into them at various ports all over the world. This was his way of telling us he was a CIRCUMNAVIGATOR. He looked at our boat and asked, "What is this?" My blood pressure started it's climb at that point because I knew what was going to come out of his mouth. I pointed to the Morgan Emblem in front of his face.

"Oh, a Morgan. I see that now. So you folks are just going to Island hop then? No big offshore plans right?" 
Yes, for now. We'll wait around a bit until the Arctic Route opens up. 

Asshole. We sold the dinghy to someone else :D

We were at a potluck once and a woman heard a story of our friends rough passage in the North Atlantic and asked the folks what boat they had. When she heard she loudly pronounced that she would never go to sea in one of those! "My Gawd that would be suicide!" I could not believe she said that. My friends handled it well. She then handed out her boat card showing her lovely "Blue Water" designed yacht that she motors around in up and down the ICW. Other than that outburst she was a very nice woman but I was starting to see a pattern here. Call it crowd separation. A bunch of people meet and then they separate out amongst their kind based on what they sail and where they've been. Eventually I was left sitting with the toothless drunk guy with the old Morgan.

"So what ya sailing these days Bob?"
It's Paul and we have a Morgan.
"No shit Bob! We sail one too. She's a 78. How bout yours?"
She's an '89.
"Ooh a fancy one. Need a beer?"
Absolutely. Nice to meet you.
"Same here. This beer might be a little warm. Was in my pocket."
No problem. Cheers buddy!

Most of us all get along very well and we really don't care what you sail as long as you're friendly and not a jackass. I have witnessed how helpful cruisers can be in our little community. The charitable giving of cruisers to one another and to the communities they travel in are amazing. If you are a sailor in need then it doesn't matter what boat you have because someone will be there for you.

I joke about the boat snobs but they are out there. Fortunately we do not run into them too often (Most are in a marina) and I have a sense of humor and can laugh at their self importance. They may not want to shoot the shit over a beer with you but I am pretty certain that if you or your boat were in trouble they would be right there to help because big or small, one hull or two, circumnavigator or island hopper, we really are all in the same boat.


I believe that's a Morgan. How did THAT get in here?


  1. I got introduced to a guy once who was apparently a sailor. “Oh you’ve got a yacht do you?” He asked.
    “Yes!” I said - happy to have finally found a yachtie to chat to at a boring party.
    “Does it have an ice maker?” He said.
    My jaw fell open. I’ve never been asked that question before even from a non-sailor! Weird. Lol. I then became the snob and made some excuse to not talk to someone who was clearly not a sailor but just some guy whose Dad had a boat.

  2. That is a stupid question to ask about a yacht, by anyone. Huh. "Of course we do! We also have an ice cream maker. We have vanilla and chocolate soft serve and on Fridays we swirl them together!"

  3. Paul, you dont know the half of it...we are WAY overdue to catch up...there are too many stories to catch up on that CANNOT, NEVER, FORGET IT can be shared by a couple old dudes with a beer. Be safe and looking forward. A**2

    1. That would be a fun day. Looking forward to it. Cheers!

  4. At least yours is Morgan, ours is an Irwin and a 78/79 at that, imagine how that goes down with the yacht club crowd