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Boating: Happy New Years from the Champagne Fairy

January 2, 2013
by boatguy Ed , Fort Myers Beach Bulletin, Fort Myers Beach Observer

It is an old tradition at the "Dead End Canal Yacht Club" to gather around the old Mexican outdoor oven/patio warmer with the large-mouth-style opening, early on New Year's Eve. After a good fire is started, the participating members write down their New Year's resolutions on small pieces of paper and throw them into the fire. 'Run-aground Ralph' always writes his on magician flash paper for the affect.

Supposedly, this will ensure that the resolution will be kept. It hasn't worked for any of us so far, and we've been doing it a long time. The tradition might be just an excuse to start drinking beer early but not to worry because we'll all be taking long afternoon naps so we can stay up to see the ball drop at midnight.

Many of us celebrate Azores New Year. They're four hours ahead of us so we can get to bed at a reasonable hour. Also, you can get off the road before the DUI checkpoints get rolling and/or the drunks swerve into your lane. We've encouraged local bar/restaurants to have two New Years celebration one at eight but they're traditionalist. They nap in the afternoon, too. So much for out of the box thinking!

Thankfully, all those best and worst of 2012 list are quickly forgotten. I was sick of it, sick of it I say. I have a short attention span but I can remember the good and bad of last year. The bad makes you want to cry, you all know what I'm talking about. The good wasn't all that good except my Internet Professional (his description) son landed a swell job in his field. I can't tell you where because all the ladies in the audience would want him to get them a discount from the high-end clothier.

Personally, last year was good in one aspect; I found the boat I've been looking for. You've never heard of a Biddison but they made great boats back in the late 1980s. I'm content and would even be more content if I could stick to my resolution. Basic ones like ... never mind. You probably have the same ones. Hope we all find the will to keep them.

The new buzz around the yacht club is the 'Champagne Fairy.' She's something like the Tooth Fairy but more complicated. As 'Cincy Bob' has explained her to me, she helps poor weak souls keep their promises to themselves. Add a little steel to the proverbial backbone, kinda. Most of us need the help because we are mortal unlike the 'Champagne Fairy.'

So here is how it works, the last drink of the old year must be Champagne, and it doesn't matter how much. I personally detest the stuff so I'll be drinking Pabst Blue Ribbon most of the night but will have a small amount of it in a Champagne glass just before retiring. The next thing is to step on the glass. That's right, crush the glass beneath your foot. Make sure you have shoes on. The Fairy isn't liable for drunks who do this bare-footed.

Next, secure a dull piece of the glass and put it into the bag that the Champagne came in. Write down your resolutions and put in the bag. Place bag under your pillow along with the cork and the receipt if you saved it. Sleep on the pillow all night long. If the bag is still there in the morning you have recruited a powerful ally in your quest to become a better person. She will be your mentor, your muse and if you fail to keep your promises, and this is the best part, it's HER fault!

Now that is a great plan. I believe it works because I haven't had a desire for a Pabst Blue Ribbon all morning. The Champagne Fairy must have anticipated my resolution because all the places that used to have PBR on tap ditched them a while back. I've been forced to drink 'BudLightnings' which is half Bud Light and half Yuengling. Sounds weird but it's passable. To really emulate Pabst Blue Ribbon, a shot of Bourbon and an old dirty sock should be added but Sweet Eileen won't hear of it. Any takers?

When the clock struck Azores midnight I was totally prepared to meet my new life with all the gusto I could muster. I followed the instructions to the letter and, even though it seemed silly, I feel stronger knowing she is on my side.

If you see me with a Pabst Blue Ribbon beer in my hand during the warm up to the BCS national championship game on the 7th of January, don't come down to harshly on the old boatguy because I've delayed the start date until the day after the game. I don't think I could get through that game without my trusty PBR. I'm rooting for 'Bama to trip, fall and fumble all night long. It will take a monumental Alabama disaster for Notre Dame to beat them but I still believe! Happy New Year.

Boatguy Ed is an avid boater, past Commodore of the 'Dead End Canal Yacht Club' and manufacturer of Super Shipbottom Anti-fouling paint,



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