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  • Writer's pictureAnnie B

People on the Water

Updated: May 28, 2019

squaresails, rigging, and a mast as viewed from the deck looking up at the sky
The rigging on S/V Actress.

I'm on and around the water all the time—partly because of work but mostly because it's where I feel most at home. Water is a constantly changing and challenging medium, and as land creatures, we're merely guests in that element. We innovate boats and equipment to make it a little more hospitable for us, we're inspired by it, and some of the best stories I've ever heard were born in water.

Podcasts I enjoy that focus on the culture of water people have different missions and styles than the one I'm pursuing. For example, Around the Buoy is fantastic, though it's interview-based. I listen to most of their episodes and am a subscriber, but interviewing is not really what I'm passionate about, nor do I plan to follow the topical parts of boating or racing. The Boat Galley podcast is very, very practical and blessedly brief, which is great, but only speaks to people who are, specifically, cruising. I occasionally listen to Hooked on Wooden Boats, which is way more specific than the type of stories I collect. I love it when people tell their own stories on The Moth Radio Hour or Snap Judgment, though of course, the topics are various and sundry.

The Water Society is an intersection of all of these: focused, based on true stories, occasionally practical, and occasionally delivered by a person of note in the boating or adventuring community, though, more than likely, not directly about the thing you know them for, but hopefully about some new facet of them they might not have shared in the past.

What if I recorded the odd conversations I have on bar stools, park benches, and in the cockpits of sailboats? Will people let me share those things?

I'm thinking that if I recorded some of the conversations I have on bar stools, park benches, and in cockpits, and if people let me share those with potential listeners, that it'd be a good chance to share things both unique and universal. Everyone's welcome—I'm imagining an audience from all over—the landlocked who want to understand or remember watery places, people who have spent their whole lives on the water, people who love to escape in storytelling, and people who like to hear stories from everyday people outside the normal spotlights.

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