The Motor Vessel "Once Around"

The Motor Vessel "Once Around"
The Motor Vessel "Once Around" in the Florida Keys

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


Back in the day, when Care and I were a lot younger and, as our son Leo likes to note, “dinosaurs ruled the earth”, we loved to water ski.  We used any excuse to get out there on my 19’ Avenger with its’ 175HP Mercury outboard (did I ever tell you we love boats?).  Together with our friends, Jody and Bobby, we would head out after work and on weekends several times a week in the summer.  The Sacramento River was usually our destination…but…I digress…
While the four of us were taking turns skiing, we would not roll the ski rope up tightly till the end of the day.  As we were still planning to ski, if we needed to haul the rope into the boat for any reason (tequila stop, prop check, lunch, whatever) we would simply pull it in from the stern hand over hand and let it coil lazily on top of itself in the back area of the boat.  Next time someone was in the water, all you had to do was toss him the handle and idle away.  The rope would feed itself out neatly.  That is, unless Jody touched the rope!
For some reason, if Jody was the one that brought the rope in, it always ended up in a tangled mess.  The poor schmuck in the river had to wait while the rest of us unsnarled the darn thing, which sometimes would take a while.  Those of us tasked with that job always whined…J-O-O-O-D-Y-Y-Y, as we worked on the twisted mess.  This happened so regularly that if we were thinking clearly (pre-Jose Cuervo), we would not let Jody touch the ski rope.  It just wasn’t worth it.
I don’t think Jody even knows this, but over the years at our house, we began to blame Jody every time something was inexplicably tangled, even if he was not around.  The cry “J-O-O-D-Y-Y" coming from anywhere in the house, garage or office told whoever heard it that somebody was untangling rope, wire, string or cord.  Even lashed up fishing lines often get blamed on him.  We still can’t figure out how Jody sneaks into our Christmas boxes in the garage each year and makes such a complete disaster out of the Christmas tree light cords (that I distinctly remember putting away so carefully).  Hearing J-O-O-O-D-Y-Y is almost like Christmas music at our house.  It marks the official start of the Christmas season.
So, what does all this have to do with the Loop?  As we tied off recently and I was plugging in shore power, I heard the dreaded
J-O-O-D-Y-Y whine from my first mate back in the cockpit.  Here’s what I found there:
I’ll be damned if Jody hadn’t sneaked into our deck box and made a complete disaster of our TV cable this week.  But it's certainly not like it's the first time he's visited us on this trip.  I’ll never know how he does it…

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