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PROFESSIONAL SAILING
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FASTNFURIOUS
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Jan 8, 2006, 12:02 PM

Post #1 of 31 (87761 views)
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I am sure i am like most of you out there, sitting at home keeping a very keen eye on the VOR and wishing i was one of the lucky (some may say unlucky but anyhow) crew racing one of those awesome machines around the world and being part of a big professional racing team.

I am 26yrs old and have been sailing and racing since i can remember and have always dreamed of doing the Whitbread (as it was when the dream started), and this dream is still with me. Like many i am in a Mon to Fri marketing job in the UK and most days wish i was out on or around boats!!

I do realise the chance of getting one of the hot seats on a volvo campaign in the future is very slim, but there are many exciting boats, teams and regattas all around the world that i would love to be involved in.

My thoughts now are whether i throw in all the normal ways of life and go off in search of becoming a professional sailor, racing and working on yachts around the world. I have done many campaigns and regattas around the UK over the years and have lots of experience and qualifications but is there enough opportunity out there to make a dream come true???

I would love to hear your thoughts and even real life experiences on this subject.

Please help me solve this life changing conundrum!!

Thanks

FnF


Guest
Deleted

Jan 8, 2006, 6:12 PM

Post #2 of 31 (87738 views)
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Try http://www.clipper-ventures.co.uk/2006/


kyle
***

Jan 9, 2006, 12:17 PM

Post #3 of 31 (87687 views)
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There seems to be three ways into it:
  1. Become a talented skipper from college and extend that campaign to paid invitations to skipper or call tactics on boats
  2. Work up from the BN jobs of deliveries and other support that escalates with your experience into being paid to race
  3. Work as a sailmaker where part of the job is to race with owners, branching out to the more professional gigs as you can.






FASTNFURIOUS
**

Jan 9, 2006, 1:44 PM

Post #4 of 31 (87675 views)
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Thanks for all your thoughts so far.

I realise there are many ways of getting into the sport as a professional and i guess much of it it the right place at the right time and and who you know.

Any crew and sailing recruitment sites you can recommend would be great.

Has anyone been racing in Australia or New Zealand recently? I really fancy racing out there and doing the Sydney Hobart race some time.

Keep posting your thoughts and experience.

FnF


greg james
**

Jan 9, 2006, 8:12 PM

Post #5 of 31 (87643 views)
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Hi.
My names Greg and you sound a little like me. I have just turned 19 and finished school and there are two options: (1) I get a haircut and a reality check and die a regretful old man who hated his job sitting in front of a blank computer screen... or.... (2) I forget about that hair cut, bite the bullet, chase the dream, and never regret “not doing” rather than “doing”.

(One last word from down under)

May the force be with you, May you never lose sight of your dreams, May you never stop dreaming, May you never stop battling to find the dream, and may you never forget the power of persistence………Dude I sound like my Grandfather, I know, but in my mind it’s the truth!

Laters man, C u on the water!
Best of Luck!

Greg James
Cool
go hard or go home


Simon
**

Jan 9, 2006, 8:16 PM

Post #6 of 31 (87641 views)
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As the Nike Slogan says ... "Just Do It" ... Get your safety at sea training and certificate ... Turn up in Hong Kong in October ... thru the RHKYC get a ride for the China Coast Cup and the Race to Hainan ... then do a delivery w/ out pay to Malaysia / Thailand for Raja Muda Cup / Kings Cup in November and December .... see where you end up from there ... arrive in Sydney pre Xmas ... thru the CYC try to find a ride for Sydney to Hobart ... this could be tough ... but a return delivery from Hobart w/ out pay should be possible ... by the time you get back from hobart you will have some real sailing miles and probably made some good friends along the way ... failing that you would have had a great four to six months off durring the Nth Winter and you can go back and get a job ...


FASTNFURIOUS
**

Jan 10, 2006, 12:44 PM

Post #7 of 31 (87603 views)
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Some of these plans sound really good and i am really glad there are some of you out there thinking the same way as me.

The more i am in the office the more i hear people moaning about life and work and think i do not want to turn out like that or be around people like that all my life.

'Just do it' sounds like the right attitude.

Has anyone ever used any of the crew seeker sites around the world? As you have to pay for these i would want to know they work ok.


Fluffy
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Jan 10, 2006, 2:39 PM

Post #8 of 31 (87579 views)
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Quote
Work up from the BN jobsof



What is a BN?


Lima
***

Jan 10, 2006, 3:17 PM

Post #9 of 31 (87566 views)
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er...I think it is "Boatswain Non-classified" meaning the lowest level of useful sailing hand.

Just make yourself useful. I know of a friend, who, back in the old days, learned wire-to-rope splicing and whenever she wanted a ride on a boat for a race, she would go to the docks a week early and just splice some wire to rope. Someone would obviously see that as useful and ask here to join on.


Simon
**

Jan 10, 2006, 5:29 PM

Post #10 of 31 (87550 views)
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You need to think about what you expect to find ... the life of a professional sailor is not allways glamourous and can be quite lonely especially once you have wife and kids and are never home ... been there done that ... do what i suggest ... take six months off work ... try it ... either love it or get it out of your system ... forget the crew agencies ... contact a major yacht club that is about to run a major ocean race and try to get on a crew or delivery crew ... work for free ... be enthusiatic ... live cheap (on board the boat) and the opportunities will come


Steve Gregory
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Jan 10, 2006, 8:45 PM

Post #11 of 31 (87531 views)
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Crazy Be wary of turning your love into your work. Things change when you are doing it for the money.


FASTNFURIOUS
**

Jan 11, 2006, 1:28 PM

Post #12 of 31 (87484 views)
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Some wise words there.

I obviously do not want to turn sailing into a chore and get annoyed with it.

I have given myself the next 6 months to decide, so i hope at that point after a busy season i will have made the right decision.

If you have any experiences you want to share with me but not on the public forum please feel free to send me a private message.

Look forward to hearing more thoughts

What would be the main marinas boats would set off from to head across the Atlantic to Europe?

FnF


rapiti
*

Jan 17, 2006, 8:05 PM

Post #13 of 31 (87432 views)
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I say do as much racing as you can. If you excel, you will be noticed and recruited by teams farther afield. I raced locally on whatever I could, on 24s statewide, and this led to Clipper Cup, then training and sailing LVC in Freo. Sadly for you, many of my peers never got off the bus.

There is an element of who you know, but I think hunger to learn and decent group skills are the prime considerations. Good luck! I did it for seven years (when we were paid a pittance) and would not trade my experiences for the world. Some have what it takes to be a boat captain/BN. I did not. I enjoyed racing, but in my case the other was near intolerable.

Australia? If you front up at the CY in the Fall, you will likely be able to find a ride to Hobart. Then there's Coff's, Mooloolooba, H.I.R.W. etc...

Good luck!


exbn
**

Jan 17, 2006, 9:00 PM

Post #14 of 31 (87430 views)
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What is a BN? The polite family oriented definition that I came up with years ago was "BUMMUS NAUTICALUS".


Simon
**

Jan 18, 2006, 4:31 AM

Post #15 of 31 (87418 views)
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the definition is not "politically correct" so do not expect a written answer


Fluffy
***

Jan 18, 2006, 10:01 AM

Post #16 of 31 (87399 views)
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hmmm. Thought it was maybe a typo. All the boats I've sailed on have BMs- Boat Managers.


FASTNFURIOUS
**

Jan 18, 2006, 1:04 PM

Post #17 of 31 (87390 views)
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What would be a rough salary of a BN in the states?

Would anyone know the general set up of the majority of the maxis, like where they get their crew and would they all be paid?

Cheers

FnF


the_sphincter
***

Jan 18, 2006, 6:40 PM

Post #18 of 31 (87381 views)
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no.

In Reply To
What would be a rough salary of a BN in the states?

Would anyone know the general set up of the majority of the maxis, like where they get their crew and would they all be paid?

Cheers

FnF



Simon
**

Jan 18, 2006, 9:45 PM

Post #19 of 31 (87376 views)
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u do it 4 love


GeneRankin
**


May 7, 2013, 6:15 PM

Post #20 of 31 (83869 views)
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In Reply To
What is a BN? The polite family oriented definition that I came up with years ago was "BUMMUS NAUTICALUS".


Well, the "B" means "boat". I ran into the term at the '71 SORC and, as a midwesterner, thought it was a southern term and balked at using the 2d word. After spending over a month hitching rides from race to race and getting to know the professional captains (their job was to say "yes" when the owner flew in and asked "boat ready?"), I began to see that it was a serious honorific.

BNs were, for the most part, the real seamen on the Circuit. True, some did more drinking than was good for them, but all could hand, reef, steer, splice, rebuild a winch, maintain a head, and usually out-sail the hotshots who flew in for the race then flew home.

Yes, I am still uncomfortable seeing it, do my best not to use it, recognize that (to an extent) it trivializes what a large portion of our population goes through every day. But the folks who nowadays have appropriated the term "professional sailor" may or not match up to the level of expertise demonstrated by the BNs I used to know.


The Publisher
*****


May 8, 2013, 4:07 PM

Post #21 of 31 (83851 views)
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From Michael Cornew:
On the article "COACHING: What Type Are You? What Type Do You Need?" published in Scuttlebutt 3833 references the term BN. It does not specifically say what BN means, only that BNs may call other people BNs. If the author of the article is uncomfortable saying that this acronym means then he probably shouldn't be using it.

I'm going to assume that the author (Mark Lemmens) wrote the article is decently well educated and should have knowledge that using root word of the term is unacceptable. I don't think I have to spell out why using the word in this casual context is absurd and offensive. Adding the word 'boat' and then abbreviating it to BN just masks the hate.

Associating the word with the lowly position of boat repair and maintenance is also offensive. Would you ever call your car mechanic a CN? I certainly hope not.

These terms and this attitude do nothing to help the public perception of sailing as elitist. Sailing clearly struggles with ethnic and socioeconomic diversity (look around your local yacht club next time you're there). And that's pretty sad honestly.

I love sailing. It's a great sport and casual activity that not nearly enough people get to enjoy because it's so expensive (instruction and boats cost money). Even 'cheap' sailing is sometimes prohibitively expensive. That is tough to control and is not the point of the message. Let's not further limit the sport's appeal because idiotic terms like this are tolerated in the sailing community.

The term BN should not be tolerated and the publishing of this article is an implicit endorsement of its use. Please remove the article. It's offensive and not funny. Consider offering an apology. A dialogue on these matters should be embraced.




The Publisher
*****


May 8, 2013, 4:08 PM

Post #22 of 31 (83850 views)
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Michael's note was not the only one we received that held a similar position. In Mark's defense, he does specifically say what the term means, which is a "derogatory term for a boat repair, optimizer, can only be used by the BN's". Yes, he was not specific about the acronym, but as Mark states, it is a term to be only used, if at all, by those that hold that job position, and I agree with that.

- Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt


The Publisher
*****


May 8, 2013, 4:09 PM

Post #23 of 31 (83848 views)
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From John McNeill, president of the International Council of Yacht Club:
All this righteous ranting in Scuttlebutt this week about the word 'ni-g-r' is so much posing by those who would somehow raise themselves above the history of the word's meanings at one time or another.

The original source referred to the color of the subject, and was even used by Kipling in describing some in India many decades ago. It had no derogatory meaning until used colloquially to refer to black slaves in the nineteenth century.

Today it is used by people of all colors to denote a 'lowlife' person of any color, and notably by blacks in referring to other blacks of ill-repute. Unless you would rewrite history, the word is only defined by the intent of the user and any referral to historical content.

Part of that history is in the boating use to describe the 'BN', the guy aboard who could be relied on to fix damn near anything, and had skills well beyond others. The BN title was actually a point of pride among those who qualified, and was even once the subject of a 'club' who proudly marked their role as members of a reverse elite among sailors. There was actually an emblem, now lost to disuse, thanks to righteous revisionists enforcing the PC credo. BN is particular to sailing, a bit of colorful and valued history, and carries no derogatory taint.
Get over your guilt pose and learn to enjoy the history.




The Publisher
*****


May 8, 2013, 4:10 PM

Post #24 of 31 (83846 views)
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Additional comments from Scuttlebutt readers:

"Sometime in the past 10 years BN morphed into the abbreviation for Boat Nanny as in the primary caregiver. That's the definition you hear most in the Grand Prix world. "

"No offensive words were printed, just an abbreviation for something that doesn't do anybody any harm. If you know what the term really means then you shouldn't be offended. It's just a word."

"Having sailed on large sailing yachts for over 60 years and been in the Coast Guard rated as a BN2, I would like to point out the designation "BN" is for a Boatswains Mate. Those that think it has other meaning should look in the mirror and think about it again."

"The "derogatory term for a boat repair, optimizer" was and should remain banished. The proper term is BMW - Boat Maintenance Worker."

- Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt


RMJepsen
**

May 8, 2013, 6:38 PM

Post #25 of 31 (83833 views)
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In sailing, we are under represented by minority sailors. for those of you in the majority, ask yourself whether you would say the words signified by BN blithly in front of an African American person. that's your answer about whether it is reasonable in the 21st century.


sorosz
*

May 9, 2013, 12:08 AM

Post #26 of 31 (83798 views)
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I think it's unfortunate that you chose to end this thread on an attempt to justify this pathetic term. You can polish a turd all you want but it's still a turd.

Trying to dress it up with a revisionist history claim that the term "nigger" had no derogatory meaning when Kipling used it is sad, but it is well played in reinforcing the stereotype that yacht clubs are bastions of elitism filled with people who want to make sure that anyone who looks differently is kept in their place. The whole point of this term and its usage throughout history was to be derogatory and it is inextricably linked to its historical context. "BN" has never been a valued part of the history of sailing - it's always been the hallmark of crass good-old-boy-network style of humor, often uttered with a nervous laugh and furtive look to see to see who might be in hearing range knowing full well that it is offensive.

And the abbreviation for Boatswain's Mate is BM, not BN. While ignorance created terms like this, it's not a good enough reason to keep promoting them.


Presuming Ed
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May 9, 2013, 12:48 AM

Post #27 of 31 (83795 views)
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In Reply To
I think it's unfortunate that you chose to end this thread on an attempt to justify this pathetic term. You can polish a turd all you want but it's still a turd.

Trying to dress it up with a revisionist history claim that the term "nigger" had no derogatory meaning when Kipling used it is sad, but it is well played in reinforcing the stereotype that yacht clubs are bastions of elitism filled with people who want to make sure that anyone who looks differently is kept in their place. The whole point of this term and its usage throughout history was to be derogatory and it is inextricably linked to its historical context. "BN" has never been a valued part of the history of sailing - it's always been the hallmark of crass good-old-boy-network style of humor, often uttered with a nervous laugh and furtive look to see to see who might be in hearing range knowing full well that it is offensive.

And the abbreviation for Boatswain's Mate is BM, not BN. While ignorance created terms like this, it's not a good enough reason to keep promoting them.


Absolutely.
+10000

If you want a name for your paid hand, call him/her his/her name. If you want to give him/her a title, what's wrong with paid hand? Or boat captain is gaining currency.

An attempt to try to redefine BN is pathetic. It's a term with a sordid past, and deserves to be long buried. It's not good for sailing.


Andy Burton
*

May 9, 2013, 4:16 AM

Post #28 of 31 (83789 views)
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Way back in the day, sailing was a light-hearted pastime for many people; even the ones who worked on the race boats. In the 70s these fellows were called BNs--we rarely used the abbreviation in those less enlightened times. The term arose in the early 70s as a result of a get-together among some of those irreverent self-deprecating sailors; one in particular was the late, very much lamented Gene Ambo. There may have been alcohol involved.
The usage was common in those days. In answer to the query about whether the term would have been used in front of black people, the answer is yes. There were many West Indians sailing on various charter boats in those days. And I worked on a boat owned by a black man who was frequently heard to remark that there was "only one n--- on this boat and it ain't me!"
I think people would do well to admit that history existed, the members of the IBNA were not racists, nothing derogatory--to others--was meant by the term, and they have nothing to be ashamed of. These were times when Grand Prix sailing was a lot more fun even though the relationship between most owners and their captains was somewhat less egalitarian than it is today.


The Publisher
*****


May 9, 2013, 8:24 AM

Post #29 of 31 (83770 views)
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From Ray Tostado:
Finally some stout hearts and honest souls are taking to task this mindless banter from all of America about the "N" word, and the aquatic equivalent, BN.

A proud brew who admitted they were not owners, but honest dedicated crewmen, and women.

If I can survive my young years being called "wetback", "beaner", by some mindless jerks from the Midwest, and in the military, I know of no persons who are of African descent who were ever offended by being called a nigger. And I knew a lot.

Stop the whining! Some of my dearest friends and most avid financial benefactors made being called a wetback a pleasure. It was pure affection and respect.

Pay attention to your trim and forget the pop culture gibberish.




Jocko Allpress
*

May 9, 2013, 8:37 AM

Post #30 of 31 (83766 views)
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AMAZING that some just feel like making a big deal about this - the 'nickname' was just that - it was never mean't to be derogatory and it's unfortunate that some feel that - get over it
I was there at Courtney Ross' boatyard when we started the IBNA - it was really more about a quiet little drink and trying to get better communications set up for out of work sailors


dmcclatchy
*

May 9, 2013, 7:45 PM

Post #31 of 31 (83635 views)
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"In us they trust". Political correctness be damned-it was a term of endearment.


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