Friday, September 29, 2006

Sea Songs: REAL Sea Songs

After reading about the album Rogue's Gallery: Pirate Ballads, Sea Songs and Chanteys on NPR, I spent more about 15 minutes to figure out how to listen to a sample from this album at (apparently clicking on the "Click here to listen" link wasn't enough for this technically-challenged sailor).

Luckily, NPR provided me with another link that DID work for me, and it brought me to a cools site called, where you can legally download this tune for free.

Best of all, because you put up with the hassle of reading about my hassle, I'll save you the hassle and give you the direct link to the page with the song, 'Mingulay Boat Song' featuring Richard Thompson on Richard Thompson on vocals and guitar. Careful - once you go this page, clicking the song name opens it in Quicktime by default for me, which I don't usually like but it played rather quickly. If you click on the link title "CD 1 & 2 Medley" you'll hear samples from most of the songs on this most excellent album.

Oh, and of course you can learn A LOT more about the entire album at NPR or at

Did I mention that both Sting and Bono also appear on this album?

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Weekend - Houston... We Have a Boat Show

And let's not forget Boston, where we love that dirty water!

We told you there were lots of boat shows this month, and the last weekend of September is no different. There are in-water boat shows in both Houston and Boston, and a non-in-water boat show in Friedrichshafen, Germany; all are going on now through Sunday, October 1st. In fact, the German show has been going on all week!

The 2006 Houston In-the-Water Boat Show is at the Watergate Yachting Center

The 2006 Boston International In Water Boat Show is at the World Trade Center (in Boston, of course).

Photo courtesy of INTERBOOT. Scroll down for more on Interboot.

The largest show of the weekend, the 45th Annual Interboot (A.K.A. International Water Sports Expedition), is in Friedrichshafen at Lake Constance in Germany. I could not find a map or directions at, but I'm sure if you made your way to Friedrichshafen, or any town around Lake Constance, you would be able to find the boat show. Just walk around and say, "INTERBOOT?, INTERBOOT?"

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Boat of the Week

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. If you're looking for a small power boat for daytrips, you can't beat a Chaparral such as the Chaparral 235SSI. Chaps are generally more expensive than other brands of the same style and size range, but you get what you pay for in quality and details. And just like a car, if you buy 'used', you might find a gem and save a few bucks.

For example, a search of Google helped me find this pre-owned 24ft Chaparral 235 SSI. The owner put enough pictures up to give me the confidence that the vessel is in near-mint condition, and a steal because (as usual) the owner "must sell."

Check it out, if it's still available, and see if you agree:

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Tune In, Turn On

Did you ever sit on your couch on a rainy evening and flip the channels, hoping that ESPN 2 is showing a fishing show, but get disappointed when they are showing another edition of the world series of poker (just how many "world series" does that competition have, anyway?)?

Well, if your like me and can never seem to find a show about fishing or boating when you want to watch it, the times they are a changing. Now there's the Water Channel, which bills itself as "the world’s first television network devoted exclusively to water lifestyle programming". Furthermore, they just announced last week that they have expanded their broadcasting to 24-hours a day, 7 days a week. No more disappointment of finding cardsharks instead of real sharks.

How can you find the new coolest TV channel on earth? Turn your Dish Network to channel 217, or if you're on Time Warner Cable, check channel 130 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, channel 288 in northeast Ohio and channel 187 in Binghamton, New York.

The network says that expansion to other Time Warner Cable systems as well as Cox Cable nationwide will continue this fall, and plans are in place to reach 45 million households nationwide within the year.

Of course, you can learn more about "television's New Wave" at

Monday, September 25, 2006

Free Safety Check

Did you know that the US Coast Guard Auxiliary will give your boat a complimentary safety check? All you have to do is ask!

What is a Vessel Safety Check?

It is a free check of a vessel’s equipment for compliance with federal and state safety requirements. The vessel examiners performing this service have been trained to look for some of the more common problems, which might occur in your boat or its associated safety equipment.

How can you get one?

If you happen to know where your local USCG Auxiliary office is, simply contact them, and ask for a "Vessel Safety Check". Or visit and enter your zip code. You'll see a list vessel examiners from both the Auxiliary as well as the United States Power Squadrons, which is another helpful boating safety organization.

Will you pass the test?

There's no way to know for sure, but you can test yourself here before you sign up if you want to see how you'll do in advance.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Sea Songs: Don't Rock My Boat

Imagine your boat anchored in the calmest of coves on a hot end-of-summer afternoon. You are on the swim platform, laying back trying to figure out if that big puffy white cloud above you looks more like an elephant or your 2nd grade teacher. One foot dangles in the cool water. Totally relaxed. Nowhere to go for hours. You've got a red stripe in one hand and in the other.... who knows?

This week's sea song, Don't Rock My Boat, may give you the answer. Give it a listen at iTunes now:

Don't Rock My Boat

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Weekend - Boat Shows, Got'em, Need'em?

If you're looking for a boat show this month, you are in luck. In fact, there seems to be a boat show in virtually every port between now and the end of the year.

As for this weekend, if you are in La Rochelle or New Rochelle, there is a boat show happening near you right now. Here are just a few of them:

What: 34th Annual Grand Pavois de la Rochelle
Where: Minimes Harbour, La Rochelle, France
When: Sept 20 - 25, 2006

What: Monaco Yacht Show
Where: Port Hercule, Monaco
When: Sept 20 - 23, 2006

What: 31st Norwalk International In-Water Boat Show
Where: Norwalk Cove, Norwalk, CT, USA
When: Sept 21 - 24, 2006

So get out and go to the boat show. And while you're there, buy a boat already, would ya?

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Boat of the Week

Yesterday, I described the success people have been having buying and selling boats on eBay, so today I decided to practice what I preach for the weekly DailyBoater Boat of the Week feature.

I scoured eBay for a luxury powerboat with an end date of less than 48 hours from the time of this post in case you are anxious to bid and see if you've won. But even if you were not planning on spending $137,000 on a boat today, you have got to at least take a look at this beautiful 63' Sea Ray 630 Super Sun Sport. Built in 1991, the seller is claiming to have reduced the price by $200,000, so it certainly looks like a steal. It meets all the typical criteria for a big-ticket item on eBay:

  • LOTS of pictures
  • Very detailed description
  • Several bids by some serious-looking buyers
  • A seller with plenty of positive feedback

    Click here to view or bid on this boat now

    Good luck!
  • Tuesday, September 19, 2006

    Buy a boat on eBay?

    I've never bought or sold anything on eBay. I actually tried to sell some extra Jimmy Buffett tickets once, but nobody wanted them, and I ended up giving them away to a co-worker.

    But people really use the site, obviously, or it wouldn't be where it is today. Did you know that eBay is a Fortune 500 company with over $4.5 Billion in annual revenue? I knew it was big, but didn't realize it was that big until I just googled ebay financials.

    Based on my experience with my Jimmy Buffett tickets, I never would have thought people actually buy and sell items as big as boats on eBay. But they do. Big ones.

    As the publisher of, I see some of the details of transactions on eBay that originate on FirstBoat's boat auction page. Of course, I don't see any personal information about the boat buyer (or even about the seller), but I do see when a boat sells to a winning bidder, how many bids there were, and how much the boat sold for.

    And last month, a buyer who started browsing on FirstBoat's boat auction page, clicked through to eBay and had the winning bid on a boat to the tune of $176,000. In fact, I was surprised to learn that during the month of August 2006, over a quarter million dollars in boats were sold on eBay to buyers originating from's auction page alone. And I'm sure that doesn't even represent 10% of the boats sold on eBay each month. Are there millions of dollars of boats being sold on eBay each month? Who knows?

    Boats are being bought and sold sight-unseen over the Internet via an online auction. How cool is that? I guess if you know what you're looking for, and what the market price is for a specific model of boat, AND if the buyer seems trustworthy (their customer feedback and prior customer experience helps!), then it is the wave of the future.

    Actually, it seems like it may be the wave of the present. I'm totally buying my next boat from FirstBoat auctions on eBay.

    Monday, September 18, 2006

    Saved by the Cell

    Last week, I read an advertisement disguised as a press release from a company that sells survival kits. The release was titled, "Personal Survival Kits Increase Odds." In that press release, a nameless man who we are told is the "head of Product Development" for the company is quoted as saying that people rely heavily on their cell phones when they need help. "Don'’t be fooled into thinking your cell phone will save your life", the nameless head of product development proclaims.

    Having read that self-serving press release, the following feel-good survival story aboutt a father and son in Vancouver made me feel even better when I realized that the press release people were wrong - a cell phone actually CAN save your life!!!

    I mean, I understand that boaters shouldn't rely primarily on cell phones for survival. For example, simply wearing life jackets would have prevented this from being a life and death happy ending story in the first place.

    Read the story yourself on the "good news blog" and also in the Saanich News by writer Brennan Clarke.

    Friday, September 15, 2006

    Sea Songs: Feeling Spangled?

    I never thought about the word "Spangled" before, it was as if it was always part of one big word, "StarSpangledBanner". The whole thing meant "patriotism", "America", "Francis Scott Key", but that word "spangled" just sounds funny by itself, doesn't it?

    Anyway, I'm writing this on the 14th of September, which Morning Edition told me this morning is the anniversary of the day that old F. Scott penned the poem which became "The Star Spangled Banner" on a BOAT off Baltimore (the "there" where the "Flag still was"). Here's the story.

    Ok, did you finish reading? Do you know all about the War of 1812 now? Good, now here's the song as performed by Sebastian Bach, former lead singer of Skid Row: To listen, after you go to this page, click on the song title on the mid-right side of the page. Well worth it.

    Thursday, September 14, 2006

    Weekend - Cannes, It's Not Just For Films Anymore

    Surely you've heard of the Cannes Annual Film Festival (The 60th Cannes Film Festival will take place May 16th to 27th, 2007), but were you familiar with the Cannes International Boat and Yacht Show? It's young compared to the Film Festival - this will only be the 29th annual Boat Show at Cannes - so, perhaps the show needs a few more years under its belt before you'll show it some respect.

    The show is in Port de Cannes as usual, but this year has expanded to Port Pierre Canto as well. The event is already rocking, and goes through the weekend, so get a move on.

    If you're going, and you can read French, then check out this cool interactive map of the show.

    Here's how I would get there:
    Fly to the Nice Côte d'Azur International Airport in my NetJet. The boat show website explains that the Cannes Boat Show is 7 minutes from the airport by helicopter. Let me know if you do that!

    Oh, and check out the website for the show: hot chicks, cool music, and boats. You really can't go wrong.

    Tuesday, September 12, 2006

    Boat of the Week

    What a Ketch.

    This 46 foot Morgan was built in 1981 and is moored in Puerto Marquez, in the south of Acapulco, Mexico.

    According to the current owner, she's very comfortable, and is a good cruising and liveaboard boat. Small enough to be handled by one person, yet big enough to sleep seven, and for some reason the interior photos of this ketch look really comfy.

    Your price: $89K

    Learn more about this boat, or contact the seller.

    Give Me Liberty or Give Me a Boat

    Perhaps this news item caught my attention when I opened my International Boat Industry newsletter Tuesday because it was the 5th anniversary of 9/11, and the headline of the story included the word "Liberty."

    And then, my memory was jogged of all the patriotism that surfaced following 9/11, all across the USA. You remember... it was a year of inspirational songs, high-flying flags, and, of course, a plethora of patriotic boat names. In fact, of the top ten boat names chosen in 2002, number one and number two were "Liberty" and "Victory," respectively.

    The actual story from IBI was about Burger Boat Company launching a 101 foot (31m) yacht that they are calling "Liberty" (pictured to your left). She looks like a fine yacht, but all I could think about is how Burger seems like a smart marketing company for getting IBI to write a story about a boat named "Liberty" on a date that makes most Americans want to fight for just that.

    Monday, September 11, 2006

    Hurricane Florence Makin' Waves

    Hurricane Florence is expected to gear up to Category 2 as it approaches Bermuda within the next 24 hours.

    According to the NOAA's 11pm EST report on Sunday evening, Bermuda residents can expect the following, and should make "preparations to protect life and property":

  • 90 MPH winds and even stronger gusts
  • six to eight foot storm surges above normal tide levels
  • five to 10 inches of rain

  • And, while Florence may not hit the east coast of the US, NOAA does offer this warning:

    So, if you are in Florence's path, batten down, and get out of the way. Be safe.

    Friday, September 08, 2006

    Sea Songs: I'm Your Captain

    Okay, so your kids have probably read the news about MySpace launching a music channel, but what does that mean for us?

    Well, for our first weekly Sea Song since the myspace launch, we are going to try to take advantage of the service.

    Let us know if this doesn't work.

    Here's your song:
    Grand Funk Railroad's I'm Your Captain

    And also, here

    Thursday, September 07, 2006

    Weekend - Lido, Oh-Ohhh Oh-Ohhh, Boat Show

    What a great tune; too bad Lido wasn't a sailor or we could also make Lido Shuffle by Boz Scaggs our weekly Sea Song. Actually, the first line of the song says Lido missed the boat, so maybe we could consider it a nautical jingle.

    Anyway, if you're anywhere near the left coast this weekend, you MUST attend the 28th Annual Lido Yacht Expo in Newport Beach at Lido Marina Village.

    In fact, you can even attend between noon and 7 p.m. today.
    Additional show hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. The price is $10 for adults, free for kids 12 and under.

    Learn more about the show here, and in this Daily Pilot article.

    Wednesday, September 06, 2006

    Boat of the Week

    Westport Shipyards, founded on the coast of the Pacific Ocean in Westport, Washington, has created a mega-yachts that, although made in the USA, can compete with ships built Europe on style and elegance.

    The Westport 164 Vango sports a tri-deck design, an LOA of 164 feet (of course), and a 30'10" beam (that's the width of a boat).

    She is able to cruise at an impressive 20 knots, and has a top-deck VIP suite with a private outside terrace... And that's not even designed to be the captain's quarters.

    Want to learn more about the Vango? Bill Lindstrom, writing for The Daily World (yes, that's a real paper even though it sounds like something out of a comic strip), points out the following interesting tidbits:

    Fill'er Up
    It costs $50,000 to fill the Vango’s 20,000 gallon-fuel tank.

    Cruise Around The World
    A full tank of fuel will get the Vango from Washington to Japan — roughly 5,550 miles.

    Read more from Bill @ the Daily World

    Read a review, with lots of photos, here

    Buy the boat here (or at least request a free brochure)

    Tuesday, September 05, 2006

    Race Around the World

    If you love boating, the idea of sailing around the world has likely crossed your mind. Well a year from now you may get your chance. The Scuttlebutt newsletter reported today that Global Ocean Sailing Ventures is now formally accepting entries for the 2007 Global Ocean Challenge. The Global Ocean Challenge is a five leg course that will start and finish in Europe with stops at South Africa, New Zealand, Brazil, and the USA.

    The goal of the race is to provide sailors the chance to participate in an around-the-world race on an affordable budget, according to the Scuttlebutt.

    Interested sailors should contact Global Ocean Sailing Ventures with further inquiries... Click here.

    Friday, September 01, 2006

    Sea Songs: Gilligan, Part 2

    After listing the original Minnow as our Boat of the Week on Wednesday, there seemed no better choice for this week's sea song than the theme from Gilligan's Island.

    However, anybody can send you a link to one of the original two versions of the actual TV show's theme song. Remember, originally the Professor and Mary Ann got shafted in favor of "and the rest" at the end of the song. Anyway, follow our iTunes button for a unique version, which I believe is sung by vegetables.

    VeggieTales (Veggie Tunes) - Pirate's Boat Load of Fun - The Ballad of Jonah (Gilligan's Island Theme)

    Oh, we know you want it, so here are the original two tunes:
    the version with "and the rest", The version with "the professor and mary ann".