by Jerry Blouin
I’m old enough to have been educated at institutions that stressed discipline over learning. Although I spent far too many hours in what my catholo-military captors called “Penance Hall” and “Penance Drill” (attendance depending upon the particular context of the violation), I remain unaware if any of the standards for transgressions were written, and convinced that many were dreamed up on the spot especially for me. Nevertheless, if no one was looking, I would now and then walk up the wrong side of the staircase, just for spite.
The measurement rules that we sail under aren’t like those school rules. The class rules are written. The intermediate aim is to get people to follow the rules. The ultimate goal is to make the rules a positive force for fleet and class building. There is no administration that “catches? people doing something wrong. We’re all in this together. In the same way that we do turns for hitting a mark that no one else sees happen, there’s no point to taking corrector weight out of a boat to gain a speed advantage. We all generally agree with these self-enforcement ideas.
Where we fall short is in taking the time to read the rules. So read them. Be sure that your boat is in compliance all of the time, including fleet races. It’s good for us all. And now for some quickies: Remember, no electronic compasses. Black bands must be on your mast and boom in the correct locations. Repair any mast partner that has been damaged or altered. Don’t remove any corrector weight until you are absolutely certain that it can be done. If you took any out, put them back.