Liberty is being free from the things we don't like in order to be slaves of the things we do like.--Ernest Benn

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Respect & Disrespect

I don't have no respect for restorations of large yachting relics of the past. I'm not speaking of old power boats. If someone wants to maintain old launches, tugs, trawlers or even cabin cruisers, either as live-aboarders or charming tour boats, that's one thing.

But to see old sailing yachts restored to the point that they are buoyant on salt water is another thing.

I see them on the bay occasionally. Usually they appear as visiting  vessels serving as tourist attractions. To me, they can't offer much in way of instruction as to how they sailed in days of old. In any kind of breeze, I would worry about safety of land-lubbers aboard; out in less breezes, they require engines running to get them up to any performance, much less tacking. What does that prove? Pure and simple, I regard them as wasteful of slips & dock space. Which are scarce enough as it is. Put these maritime relics safely ashore on the hard or in some maritime museum is what I say.

But then I read of Dennis Holland trying to rebuild his 1916 72-foot sailing ketch, Shawnee.

Holland began the project in 2006 in a side yard at his home. In 2010 the city of Newport Beach CA passed an ordinance that requires permits for such long-term construction projects. Holland applied for and received a permit, but because he didn't give the city an estimated completion date, the permit was not renewed.

Neighbors and city officials grew increasingly restive with the presence of a half-built wooden ship in a residential neighborhood. The city sued Holland last year, and the two sides reached a settlement requiring Holland to disassemble Shawnee by September 1, 2012, preparatory to its relocation. A compliance hearing set for September 12, 2012 has come and gone.

A complicating factor is the fact that Dennis Holland is 67 years old and has been battling prostate cancer for years. His work on the boat in the last year has been slowed by his need for more intensive and debilitating chemotherapy. He said he wrote the city attorney and asked for an extension but never received a response. And just these past 10 days, Holland was rushed to the hospital with extreme stomach pains.

The City is moving to ask for the courts to appoint someone to finish taking apart The Shawnee and to remove it to a junkyard.

I'm saying, WTF! Let this poor old man die at home beside his yacht. It can't be that much of an eye sore. It's not taking up any space from any one else's residence. It's not taking up a mooring or any navigable the water, is it? And for Gawd's sakes I have more to complain about in my neighborhood than these Newport Beach Republicans do. Right across the street, I've got untrimmed trees that block my view and a rebuilt skyscraper for a carport. Not to mention a front lawn whose owner deliberately converted into a permanent moonscape a couple of years ago. Do I complain?

Some of these people should retain some perspective here. Where's the humanity? What's the hurry? Where's the respect?


  1. I don't have no respect for people who don't not leave comments on my blog not never saying no comment.

    1. Skipper, when I say "No Comment", it's a sign of my utmost respect.

  2. Thanks for inviting me aboard! Remember: corporations are now people and bureaucracies have always been heartless. I wish it were not so.

    May I admit to a chuckle, though, over your neighbor's "rebuilt skyscraper for a carport?" Not funny except in the wording of it. :)

  3. Doc, you've read enough of my rants to know I despise suburbia, homeowner associations, and neighborhood pricks with delusions of grandeur.

    I agree leave the guy alone.

    Not to mention a front lawn whose owner deliberately converted into a permanent moonscape...
    My lawn ain't a moonscape but its more weeds than actual grass. To be honest, I sort of keep it that way to piss off the republican pod people I live among.

    1. Beach, if he could have just watered what he found was growing there, I would have volunteered to mow it. But no. He plowed it over and over. When he was through, I considered buying some grass seed and tossing it during the rains. But as I am always saying, "Don't engage in aberrant behavior unless there's a buck in it for you somehow". And he happens to be a sailor. And it's his private property. Moving on...