A Little Boating Humor
An Open Letter To My Creditors
Dear Banks and/or Credit Unions to whom I owe money,
I have started down that slippery slope to bankruptcy and thought you might appreciate it if I gave you plenty of advance notice. Granted, this may not happen for a while, but I didnt want it to be a complete surprise for you when it does.
You see, I have recently taken the first step toward insolvency, according to many financial experts. Yes, thats right. Despite knowing full well what the future consequences were, I (actually, its we, since my wife will be penniless also) recently went out and bought a boat. This news is certain to cause the people in your collections department to adorn my file with those large red flags that you like to use to denote probable future deadbeats. I understand. You have rules that youve got to follow.
Although it probably has no bearing on your view of our financial future as being quite dismal, I thought you might like to know that we only bought a small boat. A used one. One that was well within our budget. Oh, I know, youre going to say that it doesnt matter how sensibly the addiction begins. Youre going to tell me that once it has taken hold there is little, if any, treatment. Youll warn me that the insidious cravings worsen with each season until the guy who started out with a small pontoon boat wakes up one day in the stateroom of his custom built seventy-eight foot houseboat and realizes that he is in way over his head. Then he has no choice but to bail out, so to speak, of his financial obligations. It happens all the time, you say.
Perhaps its pier pressure (a little marine humor there) that causes otherwise sane people to immediately start planning the purchase of a larger boat the same day they take delivery of their new one. All it takes is for some so-called friend to float by in a rig thats 6 feet longer and twenty miles-an-hour faster, saying, "Hey, man, this is good stuff, ya wanna try it?" They give it a try and the next thing you know, theyre visiting boat dealerships, hanging pictures of the bigger boat on their refrigerator door and putting their 3 week old boat in the Boat Trader. Tragically, theyre hooked. Another classic example, you say, of the need for a Just Say No campaign on our nations lakes and waterways.
Maybe youre right. After all, you guys are the experts. Youre the ones who are left holding the bag by those who succumb to the seduction of a first boat and then rapidly go financially downstream after that. Youre the people who try to intervene by referring debtors to Boaters Anonymous. (The reason those meetings dont work, by the way, is that whenever someone mentions "higher power," everybody else runs out to buy a bigger boat motor.) Youre the originators of the saying, "Not everyone who owns a boat goes bankrupt, but everyone who goes bankrupt owns a boat." Of course, youre also the people collecting incredible amounts of interest from all of those overextended boaters, but thats not the point here.
So, dear creditors, now you know. Its probably only a matter of time until our boat payment dwarfs our mortgage payment; until were raiding the kids college funds to cover the slip rental at the marina; until were found siphoning fuel from neighboring boats because our gas cards are maxed out. But, until that time comes, you can breathe a sigh of relief with every check we send you (after it clears, of course). Who knows, maybe well even be one of the few who beat the odds by enjoying boating while remaining fiscally sound. (Is that snickering I hear?)
Okay, I feel much better now that Ive given you this advance notice. If anything else comes up that I think you should know, Ill be back in touch. In the mean time, if you turn down any loan applications because the people are trying to buy too much boat, ask them if theyd be interested in a 3 year old, 20 foot bowrider. You see, we have our eye on this new twenty-six footer and if we can sell our old boat, then...well, never mind. There are some things you probably dont need to know.
Solvent (So Far) in Seattle
Submitted By: Anonymous
When launching a boat, always back the boat into the water. Pulling the boat into the water can really mess up your carburetor.
When water-skiing, never allow a feisty duck to hitch a ride on your skis.
Always stay at least five boat-lengths behind the whale in front of you.
While sinking to the bottom of a lake or ocean, screaming does not help.
When boating, always wear a swimsuit with suspenders. This makes it easier on the guys with the grappling hook when they're trying to retrieve your body.
Drowning can cause severe shortness of breath. And you don't even want to think about what it does to your complexion.
Always wear a life jacket in case you fall overboard. Also, it's a good idea to take along something to read, in case you're swallowed by a whale. Most whales seem to enjoy Moby Dick.
Boating while intoxicated is not illegal in some states, but it's stupid in all of them.