Hot Mess on the Water

When I go out to run along the Potomac through Georgetown and out to Virginia I’ve been seeing lots of crew teams. When I go in the morning I see even more of those tiny little boats out on the water.

16549-DEFAULT-mWell, the time has come and I have decided to try it out. Turns out there’s a boathouse along my usual running route that has evening intro to sweeping classes that actually work with my schedule this summer. Initially, I thought: But I always vacuum, I don’t sweep! But after numerous rowers explained the intricacies of their sport and made me regret asking them any questions in the first place (thankfully, runners don’t like to bore people with endless details about their pastime) I realized that meant rowing with one oar and a bunch of other people. Okay, I can handle that.

I can’t say “coxswain” without laughing, but I can handle operating one oar. I think.

A friend who did a stint as a coxswain at Oxford during her grad student years suggested I do that, but I have a feeling given how lost I get on foot I’m not an ideal candidate for steering the boat. (Though this seems to be the rowing equivalent of women-drink-free where the coxswain doesn’t pay to be on a team because everyone is so desperate to get a good one…?)

Really, what’s the worst that could happen?

potomacYou know, aside from slowly drowning in the filthy, polluted waters of the Potomac as I watch the runners on dry land and wonder why I ever thought this was a good idea. Now, if you’ll excuse me I need to go do my 8 minute arms video with tomato cans so I don’t totally embarrass myself with my lack of upper body strength.

Any rowers out there with strong opinions about how a beginner should go about not sinking the ship?


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