Sail-to-the-sea

May 1, 2013 § Leave a comment

Read page 43 of the May 2013 issue of Spinsheet to find out what one great children’s book can do.
Sail-to-the-sea

Sail-to-the-sea

Kids become what they do

April 23, 2013 § 2 Comments

If you’ve participated in a Saving Sailing town-call, you’ll recall talking about how sailing (and other important outdoor experiences) suffer under the media avalanche that buries most kids. Of course, the problem transcends sailing. Schools, family and neighborhoods have been crushed too.

I’ve started a new blog called FamilyNeighborhoodSchool.com to study the problem and discuss solutions. I hope you’ll follow it too.

 – Nicholas Hayes, Author of Saving Sailing

Have you ever witnessed a kid fast forward through the previews on a rented DVD, or call out Britney Spears swigging a Pepsi as a ploy to get you to consume more corn syrup? Not all kids know advertising to be propaganda, but taking the lead from an adult, some do. Credit the young mind with the ability to grasp symbols and metaphor and see through distortion or exaggeration. When abstract thinking develops, bright colors and catchy music might still attract attention, but a kid can understand that it might be toward something being sold. Kids are smart.

To be clear, advertising messages do shape public opinion, especially those of the impressionable or the emotional. But like emotions, messages and public opinion are fleeting; they are just words, pictures, and fads that fade or shift with time. The impressionable grow up. The emotional find new cares.

Measured in durability over years, messages pale in comparison with experiences in defining who we are, what we believe, and how we act throughout our lives.

Kids don’t become what they see on TV or the Internet. They become what they do. Read more.

Kids and video games

Let’s #GoSailing in Denver. Seriously.

March 28, 2013 § Leave a comment

I’m very excited to be speaking at this year’s Spirit of Sailing Gala, the annual fundraiser for Community Sailing of Colorado. It’s a worthy program, offering sailing scholarships and outreach and with a reputation as a leader in adaptive sailing. And I’m excited meet co-presenter Jen French, a Paralympics silver medalist and the author of the new book On My Feet Again; My Journey Out of the Wheelchair Using Neurotechnology.

The Gala will be held at The Denver Athletic Club in downtown Denver on April 20, 2013 beginning at 6:00 PM. You can still get tickets here.

As a bonus, CSC will be hosting two sidebar events. Jen will be telling stories from her book at Craig Hospital on Friday, April 19 from 6:00-7:30 pm.

And here is a flyer for the Sailing Town Hall on Sunday April 21st at 11am, a meeting for folks that would like to help more people find sailing in their lives. I hope to see you there!

Saving Sailing Town Hall Meeting

#GoSailing on Bull and Bear

March 21, 2013 § Leave a comment

A couple years ago I had the pleasure to sail aboard Bull, one of the Sandbagger twins docked in Annapolis and giving folks a taste of fast classic sailing. If you’re there, stop by and ask for a ride. Unforgettable.

This is the 2013 update on Bull and Bear from Molly Winans @Spinsheet, who sits a stone’s throw from the dock and is always in the know.

They were supposed to be on loan for one year. The program has been so successful that it’s been extended. I think we will be on year three. Also, a team of volunteers nearby has been shining them up over the winter. Super dedicated guys who love woodworking and also happen to be volunteers who take kids out. These boats sail like a dream on light air days, which is fantastic for us in summer.

And in an odd stroke of luck, one of my fellow crew-mates was filming on the same day. Yes, I was having a blast trimming main.

Bull and Bear Sandbagger Annapolis

Working to play

March 16, 2013 § 2 Comments

Working to play

Working to play

We don’t aspire to work,

we aspire to play.

When play is easy and everywhere,

it’s just time passed,

and work is something to avoid.

When play is challenging and rare,

it creates something new,

and work is vital.

Facebook Sailing

March 6, 2013 § 1 Comment

Seen first in the March 2013 issue of Spinsheet Magazine.

Facebook Sailing

“Thunk… kerplunk.” The sound of a cell phone dropping from a pocket, bouncing on a deck, splashing and sinking into the dark water.

“Awwww #^%$#%.” The sound of the owner of said cell phone. Thinking about lost calls, forgotten numbers, missed texts, and worst of all, the 7 or 8 hours of upcoming frustration sorting out the terms of the next contract with a hungover store clerk or someone in a distant call center.

“Splash, gasp, laugh and holler!” The sounds, a short few hours later, of said cell phone owner, lost phone forgotten for the time being, entering the water to cool off between sailing races.

Have you experienced such a day of loss and recovery? Or witnessed it? It’s a common modern weekend sailing story. Day-to-day disappointment and stress turned to joy in the course of a few sunny hours spent sailing.

The contrast is striking; a lost phone conjures dark feelings, and a summer sail and swim erases them completely. I think it’s evidence of an important sailing storyline.

Let’s explore why it happens.

We’ve been told that the cell phone connects us to something, and while it may seem counter-intuitive, it might also be said that the cell phone is disconnection in the extreme. While we anticipate human contact through it, the contact is, in reality, more absent then present, more fleeting and frustrating than fulfilling. Why do we stare at our phones anticipating tweets in buses or in line at the grocery cashier? Often, I find, I’m tethered to the screen, awaiting seven or eight inconsequential, usually misspelled words. I reply with something equally cryptic (and undoubtedly more flawed grammatically) and then step off the bus or shuffle forward in line. Imagine a future with no eye contact, no complete sentences, where no person can sense a change in the direction of the wind, or where nobody has an outdoor adventure to remember together.

Sailing, on the other hand, is both materially untethered and socially connected at the same time; freeing and encompassing in both large and small bursts.

« Read the rest of this entry »

#Facebooksailing

February 28, 2013 § Leave a comment

Facebook Sailing

Apparently, I’ve ruffled more feathers by suggesting that social media isn’t the solution. What do you think? Read #Facebooksailing in this month’s Spinsheet Magazine.

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