Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Carry Your Own Weight

We've all used this phrase at various times, but nowhere is it more apt than in rowing. Whenever I'm out on the water *I* am my own engine, responsible for powering the boat wherever it goes. Usually I row with anywhere between 1 and 3 other people, and believe me, everyone needs to be doing their part for a smooth, fun, proficient, efficient, powerful ride.

Which brings me to Orange Shorts of Anger. This man, who shall remain nameless (although Sandy has met him, and can back me up as to his existence, lack o' prowess, and demeanor) is the most useless lead weight EVER to perpetrate himself on the sleek sport of sculling. Occasionally he accompanies my team out on the water (he's been in the club forever and so has basically grandfathered himself into a situation that he does not have the skills for) and he makes the trip a total S.N.A.F.U. nightmare. He's big--6'2" or so--and weighs about 230 lbs., so brother-friend is not light. He weighs the boat down considerably, but that isn't the issue. There are plenty of big guys in rowing.

The problem w/ OSoA is that he doesn't actually row when we row. He brings all that ballast into the boat but then contributes precisely ZIP to our propulsion. Today the water was particularly choppy (calm seas but solid 10 kt gusts out of the northwest) and between the driver (person in the bow who gives us commands to steer) being preoccupied w/ navigating and OSoA not doing a g-d thing but sit there, it was basically me and one other rower powering a quad all over the Potomac. That's about 900-1000 pounds of humans and equipment. Needless to say, I'm a little sore. Literally and figuratively. StOOpid OSoA.


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