Rad Dad: Sailor Steve

Rad Dad: Sailor Steve

Posted by Carlee Benito on

I have been told my dad is a legend and the truth is that although I am very, very biased, that musing is not far off. For as long as I can remember people are always calling him asking for his help, advice, or just a couple of laughs. The place I like to do all these things with him is out on his boat aka his happy place. On any given day, if there is wind, you will find him out on the ocean, sailing until the rest of the boats have gone in. I envy the way being on the boat fills him with so much joy and at the same time it’s the most wonderful thing in the world to see someone you love so much be somewhere that makes them so happy.

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We took an afternoon off from the grind to go on a short sail with him- full disclosure the wind was shit- but we still had a blast. Afterwards he was kind enough to share some thoughts on sailing, life and what it’s like to be the world’s greatest dad..

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Sailing is an all encompassing: a mix of art and science, it can be joyful and most humbling. There is no song, no lyric, no written word that can capture the emotions adequately. It fills me with a sense of wonder, joy, peace, rhythm, power, excitement, fear, discovery, and solitude all at the same time.  Being surrounded by nothing but water in every direction is an excellent reminder of a being much greater than us.

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Like fatherhood, sailing wisdom comes with time and experience. The emotions I described above could also be associated with the journey of being father to the greatest kids on earth.

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Advice for life goes back to the basics. Be good to one another as we are here for a short time. Choose a career that has a noble purpose above money. And remember we are human beings and as such we are flawed. Be good to yourself, be honest, hard working and humble. Live in grace.

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The boat is an Alberg 30 . She was designed by famed naval architect Carl Alberg. She was built in 1965 and her hull number is 59. The Whitby boat yard up in Canada built her. She is a blue water ocean-going vessel that is capable of circumnavigating the globe. She just turned 50 and has been completely restored. Currently there are 2 Alberg 30 clubs; one in the Chesapeake Bay and one in San Francisco. Maybe I should start the Dana Point one?

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I began sailing in college in Cleveland on Lake Erie in 1970. My first boat was a Catalina 25 ft sailboat and then a Pearson 30.

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The most harrowing experience I had was on a sail in the mid 1980’s on a journey from NYC to the island of Bimini. About 50 miles off the coast of Bimini we were hit by a storm that produced gale force winds and 10 ft seas. The ship was a sturdy cement hull 57 ft boat that could handle almost any situation. As the storm hit we immediately put our life vests, on grabbed a radio and safety lines, and put up a storm sail. Next we put a sea anchor out and as the waves and winds started to get worse we dropped all our canvas and went below to ride out the storm-not fun! Several hours later the storm cell passed and we were able to continue our passage. Left with 4 souls on board and returned with 4 souls on board, one a few pounds lighter [insert green-faced emoji here].

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My Dad worked incredibly hard his entire life to afford to live near by the beach and have the luxury to go out on his boat everyday. He knows and appreciates that fact which I think helps him relish every moment out on the ocean. To me, thats very Richer Poorer.

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Wanna be like my dad? Snag a pair of his US Made socks.