Monday, August 15, 2005

Details, details

I am usually a stickler for details so when things are done half assed, they bother me until I finally break down and do them all over again until I am satisfied. This brings me to my rant about a six inch piece of wire. In itself, a piece of wire is worth about a hundreth of a cent but in a boat it could be worth quite a bit more. Actually, almost a hundred grand. Why exactly would a piece of wire be worth a hundred grand you might ask? Well, let me tell you, if that wire in question is the safety wire that holds the locking bolt on your rudder, it becomes a lot more valuable by a factor of about a million. So what does that have to do with me? It seems like the last time I broke my rudder and had it replaced last June, the mechanic neglected to install a safety wire. And what exactly happens when you don't put in the safety wire? Well, what happens is that the rudder falls out of the boat down to the deepest part of a lake. Of course rudders never fall out in shallow water. This in itself is a four hundred dollar mistake EXCEPT that when the rudder falls out, it leaves a two inch hole in the bottom of the boat. Let me tell you, with three bilge pumps, a hand pump and a lot of swearing, we managed to remove no measurable water and the boat took on about two feet of water in three minutes. By fluke my neighbor whizzed by on a jetski and I flagged him down and very politely asked for a tow to my beach. Another 3 minutes in the water and the boat would be submerged. All this because somebody neglected to put on a little piece of wire. The boat is fine, my neighbors impeller ate a rock on my beach and I'm a little traumatized but everything worked out OK.

Like any good fiasco, there is a moral to this story, actually two:

A) Be good to your neighbors
B) Watch out for details because they'll kill you

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