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Boat U.S. says you are not a boater until you have:
Forgotten to install the drain plug before launching the
boat: Suddenly realizing you're ankle deep in water, scrambling to
contort over the transom to install the plug, or rushing to get the boat
back on the trailer faster than a NASCAR pit crew really means "you've
arrived" in recreational boating.
Contracted a case of "raccoon eyes": Caused by
permanently attached sunglasses and the sun's rays waves reflecting off
the water, the "raccoon eyes" look is characterized by a mask-like
whiteness around the eyes surrounded by sunburned cheeks, nose and
forehead. Cold, rainy weather is the only known cure.
Sent boating-themed holiday cards: Sailing Santas,
lighthouses with Christmas wreaths, Rudolph pulling a boat full of toys,
boating-themed holiday cards keep the boating bug alive in the darkest
winters. Non-boating family and friends will just think you've gone off
the deep end.
Purchased a Jimmy Buffet CD: A favorite of
sailboaters, usually accompanied by a blender and a shaker of salt
attached to a tether so it does not get lost.
Started shopping for a bigger boat the day after you buy
your first one: Also known in the psychological field as
"three-feet-i-tis," this disease is characterized by irrational and
envious thoughts of larger vessel ownership. Most health plans do not
provide for its treatment.
Sanded the boat's bottom, varnished the hull, replaced a
plank and enjoyed every minute of it: For old boat lovers, nothing
gives a better sense of pride knowing you made your classic look more
wonderful than a fine piece of antique furniture.
Seen a sunrise over a glassy waterway and realized you are
in Heaven: Most "real" boaters understand that boating and sailing
are medically proven to lower blood pressure, whiten teeth, lower
cholesterol and delay the aging process.
Steve McCadams is a professional hunting and fishing guide here in the Paris Landing
area. He has also contributed many outdoor oriented articles to
various national publications.