Here’s a bit more about whys and wherefores of the idea I have, which, if you’re just joining, is to get our daughter on a boat beginning at a young age and, by spending time together on the water, to help give her the tools to succeed throughout her life. I always like a good list to get information out there quickly, don’t you?
- A hard look at myself: To be frank I’m not one of these touchy-feely guys when it comes to kids. If you ask anyone they’ll probably tell you, I didn’t like them until I had my own. Girls especially. I didn’t get it, at all. I would meet these doting fathers and say, “Hey that’s great. She’s cute. Did you see my Land Rover?”
- All that changed when our daughter was born. She’s the apple of my eye, but it’s because she’s spunky and funny and smart all at once.
- I make no bones that this will be an easy boat to learn on—more on that later. I know what I’m up against there, and not just for her. But it’s just like when you first drove a stick shift. No one can tell you how, there’s just too much to it, all happening at once. You must experience it. Get in the driver’s seat. So much in life is like that, no? Try to cast a flyrod once and you’ll know what I mean.
- Girls vs. Boys. This is not about that, except where it is. I always noticed that many behavior patterns (aggressiveness is rewarded in boys and frowned upon for girls, but often so is confidence. It’s a real problem and I would say many of society’s problems spring directly from it. I noticed it mostly because my wife pointed it out: In school my daughter gets upset when another girl does better than she in class. When a boy does better, it’s not a big deal. So it would seem that she’s trying to be the best girl in class, rather than the best. Where’d that come from? Well I’ll tell you—it comes from everywhere. I just changed it, but when I started writing this part I titled it “Boys vs. Girls” because that’s the natural order of that phrase.
- Why boats? Well as I explained, I’ve worked as an editor for marine magazines for my entire career. And I’ve seen what the water can do for people’s outlook on things. I need that. My family needs it. And my daughter is young enough that she can benefit from it in ways on which I’ll continue to elaborate.