Ahoy, Mateys

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Yesterday was the last Y-Knot sailing day until early August. Some sailing members are heading to Vermont and Canada for Martin 16 (specially adapted sail boats) Regattas and other events. The winds were mild on the lake which made for a calm and sometimes very still sailing experience. I sailed with Robert who has been a member for about seven years.

While heading up to the lake yesterday morning, I looked up some more sailing terms that have been folded into our modern-day language with slightly morphed definitions.   Here’s a few that caught my attention:

We’ve all been told at one time or another to “Pipe Down”. This term originated on the seas where when the boatswain’s (the senior crewman of the deck department) pipe sounded, it was a signal for all crew to quiet down and retreat to their hammocks for the night.

A Rummage Sale wasn’t something that began with your local church. This term explained the sale of damaged cargo or odds and ends that were no longer valuable to the mission of the ship. The wares would be sold while docking.

The expression “Slush Fund” has many modern-day meanings ranging from harmless gathering of extra coins and monies to spend on a rainy day, to secretive corporate accounts where illegal acquisitions are hidden. But the name originated as a nautical term referring to the sale of kitchen grease. This substance was called Slush, and was a valuable by-product of the boiling of meat that fed the crew. The slush was used for greasing machines, and the proceeds bought the crew special luxuries, like alcohol.

Although the Martin 16’s will be resting for the month of July, the Freedom , also known as the “No Limit” sail boat will be active. This boat is larger and holds several passengers. It will be captained by a seasoned staff or volunteer sailor and will have a first mate. The passengers also have disabilities, but will be just coming along for a ride on the magical waters of Lake George.

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