Friday, October 7, 2011

The Undersea World Of Laser Sailing

"The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau" (1966 - 1976) was one of those few programs that demonstrated what television could achieve if put to the highest purpose of educating the public. He gave us a look at a world most of us would never have the opportunity to see first hand, along with a deep appreciation for the web of life on our planet.

But now, evidently inspired by him, there are people who are following in his footsteps to explore our world beneath the sea. They are called "Laser sailors".

Perhaps Laser sailors should adopt a mask and snorkel as de rigueur gear?

Until next, sweet sailing.


Martin J Frid said...

I like how the crew member with the camera bravely stayed in one spot the entire time and did not stop filming ;)

Pandabonium said...

Indeed, Martin. Perhaps strapped to the deck with bungee cord?

I also liked the way that the wind indicator worked just as well as a water current indicator.

Baydog said...

The camera was in fact secured by duct tape. Is there any other way?

tillerman said...

Brilliant! The video appears to be of someone from the Laser fleet at Rutland Sailing Club in the UK. I was a member of that fleet from 1986 to 1988, and fleet captain in the last year. (Then we moved to the USA.)

It's good to see that at least one member of the fleet is continuing my fine tradition of capsizing the Laser with the sheet wrapped around his feet. Always more entertaining that way!

Thank god we didn't have boat mounted video cameras and YouTube in my day.

O Docker said...

The Laser doesn't get nearly the recognition it should. It has introduced more people to the fascinating world of underwater exploration than all of Cousteau's films combined.

It is just as happy inverted as right side up, and, in the hands of even the most skillful sailor, spends just as much time underwater as above.

I really don't understand why this isn't the official boat of the Cousteau Society.

Doc Häagen-Dazs said...

I don't know, O'Doc! Lasers are still in my face, and sometimes in my water, wherever I'm sailing. I'm still very high on them. I think no one disses them.

Pandabonium said...

Baydog - well there are also nails. Just tack it down like some people do a boat's name on the stern. ;^) In this case I prefer to think (like Martin) that some brave crew member lashed his or herself to the bow and hung on throughout.

Tillerman - how awesome that this clip comes from your UK club!

Lucky for most of us, cameras are still optional - though they may be installed in the US and UK in the name of "security". Ack!

Odocker - Indeed. The Laser as a entry level boat for sailing is like using the Lockheed F-104 as a primary trainer for pilots. Egad.

Doc - not dissing them at all, and neither is O Docker, I believe. Just pointing out the challenges which the boat presents - and perhaps that is why it is so popular.