Boris Mann’s Personal Blog

Sep 2011

Intro to Class Afloat Yearbook (and GitHub pages)

Do you remember sun-drenched Wotje, with the little girl who presses a pretty shell into your hand and laughs? Do you remember Typhoon Kyle, and furling sails in 50 knots of wind and 40 foot waves? Do you remember a week out of Honolulu, already part of the family, when friendly Roger sailes out from Palmyra, sharing his island paradise? Do you remember sailing under the Golden Gate bridge, seeing parents waiting, and having the family scatter across the country, around the world?

Turn these pages, and remember the ports. Remember also the people. Your roommates, your watchmates, your teachers, the crew, your friends. Remember the ship, her tall masts towering above you. The sails filling with a snap and proud maple leaves billowing out as she leaps forward, dolphins and blue, blue waves her only companions.

You scurry about on deck, acid-washing your fingers to the bone. Scuppers, deck scrubbing, rust-picking, priming, painting. Scrubbing pots and flipping stir-fry, serving tables and being the juice-person.

Remember those endless nights on watch? Struggling to keep awake, keeping your eyes glued to the red glowing compass. Staring off at the horizon, watching the first faint rays of the sun creep up.

It's all in here, so you'll never forget. The voyages of the S/V Concordia, 1993 - 1994.

I'm revamping Right now I'm experimenting with putting flat files up on Github pages.

This is an example of me putting up my Class Afloat Yearbook, which I scanned in many years ago.

This is a transcription from the scanned image of the first page. I was the yearbook editor, but through a series of mishaps, never ended up with my own copy of the yearbook, so I only have these scans.

I obviously didn't have much room, so there are no line breaks. I've put some in for readability. And I'm pretty sure "rustpicking" isn't one word, so I added a hyphen.

Casting a critical eye on this writing, which is now 17 years old, written by my 19 year old self, it's…OK. I'm not emotionally removed enough (still!) from the memory strings it's tugging. As with most of my writing, it's very conversational; and by that I mean, I use the same cadence when writing as when I'm speaking.

I still haven't applied to speak at Raincity Chronicles, but if I do, it will be about some part of this Class Afloat voyage.

Cue the switch to tech talk…

Github pages? Well, it's a funny throw-back to be writing HTML directly in a lot of little index.html pages (never mind having a bunch of files all called the same thing open in your text editor). I need to learn Jekyll to actually build a site.

It DOES feel great to be "crafting" a site, with the links and organization of naming, file structure, and links all selected, rather than auto-generated. And it feels like work, in a good way.