Seasons change with the scenery

Close to 10 years ago Carina Hanna created a scuttlebutt Gmail address and started emailing flyers of upcoming events and activities to the membership as a supplement to the monthly Burgee that came by post.   It wasn’t long after that the Burgee stopped coming by mail and I took over The Scuttlebutt, and moved it from a Gmail account to the professional email marketing platform where it is today. 

For the longest time only flag officers knew who was behind The Scuttlebutt, before one of them blew my cover.  And in that spirit, I won’t divulge the identity of the new The Scuttlebutt editor; that will be up to them.

Most importantly I want to thank you all for allowing me into your Inboxes a couple of times each week for all of these years.  I’ve been sending professional email for longer than maybe three other people in the world, quite literally, and have had the time of my career sending The Scuttlebutt for SlBYC.

Thank you for allowing my self-indulgences.  “Misce stultitiam consiliis brevem: Dulce est desipere in loco.”  Or, to quote Willy Wonka quoting Roald Dahl quoting Horace, “A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men.” 

Which brings me to the Sea Belles.  They really don’t cause trouble or need bail money or anything like that.  Now that they’ve read this, I hope they’ll return my cat.  Unharmed.  Not that they wouldn’t.  I think I’m messing this part up. 

I love the Sea Belles.  Seriously I do; they have had the best sense of humor and know how to turn a tease into a good time, and that’s money.  This is the greatest group of gals you’ll ever meet, but don’t piss them off.  They carry bail money for a reason and you don’t want to be it.  Word.

We join clubs to have fun and enjoy others with a common interest.  Over the years faces become family as we share our histories and make new ones together.  Like a family we welcome new additions; we wish well in their next chapter, and mourn their loss when their watch has ended.

Announcing the passing of a member has been the hardest part of writing The Scuttlebutt.  I’ve always tried to share what our friend was like, what was learned from them, and how they may have inspired us or others; those things of them that live on in us.  The way we want to remember them.  After that poems select themselves.

Like Atticus said, “If you can learn a simple trick, Scout, you’ll get along a lot better with all kinds of folks.  You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view.”

Don’t think I haven’t gotten something out of the ‘butt, too. 

Some may not know that I had stage-four throat cancer 4 ½ years ago, treated with chemo and radiation.  No matter how terrible I felt, no matter what other work I had to or could do, I needed – truly needed – the purpose of sending The Scuttlebutt twice a week to keep me going.  Sometimes it was my only waypoint.

If I may share a little more personally; during treatments, I lost almost 30% of my body weight, mostly due to the radiation burns to my throat and my inability to swallow even liquids. 

For two months a mask bolted my head to a table so that I wouldn’t move during the raditation of the eight locations of cancer in my neck.  One of those locations was at the base of my nasal cavity, with the radiation damaging the lining and mucus membrane causing it to collapse under even the slightest breathing restrictions.  As an added bonus, the membrane over produces now to protect my damaged throat, while the radiation decimated my right-side parotid gland that would otherwise help to thin it out.

And now you know why you won’t see me with anything on my face other than glasses that I’ve always worn.

While it’s time for me to move on from The Scuttlebutt, I’m not moving on from SlBYC or the Southern California boating community.  I figured I’d just keep the momentum going and run the SCYA Flag before Tina catches on, so I’ll be kicking off next year as SCYA Rear Commodore for 2021. 

Thank you all again so very much for allowing me to share your events, parties, anniversaries, cruises, races, Opening Days, COWs (Change Of Watch for you noobs), FNDs, GYOs, birthdays, and the passing of friends held dear.

It has been an honor to serve SlBYC in so many capacities, though none as long as this. 

Okay; you hang up first….