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THE CULT OF THE POINT

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j24_worlds04_007.jpgThe modern-day bowman's description encompasses three basic duties: Call the starting line, make the headsail changes, and do all the climbing. But the simple description doesn't convey either the action or complexity of the work at hand. Done well, it's a job that takes speed, strength, and balance, as well as the ability to keep track of a dozen lines and parts that are constantly bending around turns and overlapping each other. It takes a personality that enjoys a certain amount of chaos and mayhem, and further enjoys salvaging order from it...

by Douglas Logan

In broad daylight, a car comes to a stop about halfway up the easterly rise of the Newport Bridge. A man gets out of the car, walks to the guardrail, and stares down at the sailboats dotting Narragansett Bay. After a few moments of consideration he climbs onto the guardrail, steps off, and plummets roughly 10 stories into the water.

Down below, Mike Toppa is heading up the bay, trying to get his boat to the start of a race in time. He's late because his bowman, Jerry Kirby, never arrived at the dock. Toppa looks up and sees the human missile hurtling down from the bridge. The body hits the water nearby, and Toppa makes a short detour to where the swimmer has now popped up out of the water. It's Kirby, typical Kirby, and Toppa is unperturbed. "At least you didn't miss the race," he says, as Kirby climbs aboard unscathed.   more...

 



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We can't be talking about Tor can we??????11/29/2004 7:44:44 AM
patsuman
What's a Tor?11/29/2004 10:17:54 AM
editor@h2onotes.com
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