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[This page first appeared on the Cinque Ports Model Yacht Club site. The content is pure Larry Robinson.]

Sailors compliment each other in strange ways. The novice may easily be mislead and not understand the true meaning of the apparent praise. As an aid to those new to R/C sailing, we have put together a list of common verbal responses to your doing well in a race or a series, and the true meaning of these comments.

Compliment True meaning
"Good race!!" (with a pat on the back.) "You are not a threat, so I can afford to be magnanimous."
"Good job" (said without emotion.) "I am a better sailor, but you beat me because I screwed up, so I guess I have to be a good loser."
No comment at all. "You have arrived. I expect you to do fairly well."
"I question your changing ballast between regattas (or whatever)." "You are advancing more rapidly than I think is appropriate and I donít like it."
"By the way, I donít like the way you use two different jibs with one main (or whatever)." "You are getting close to the top. I've got my eye on you, and I am just letting you know."
"And while we're at it, I think your sails are illegal." Bingo!! These sailors are sure that you could not possibly be a better sailor. They think you are winning because you are using methods that must be illegal. These sailors have paid you the highest complement in sailing!
©1999 Larry Robinson  


©2018 Lester Gilbert