Being "Green", god I hate that term. Its more being responsible for your own crap. But, regardless, I have a feeling that until places like China and other up and coming industrialized societies actually crack down on the shit they are putting out into the atmosphere its like squirting a raging fire with a bad-prostrated wanky.
In this little series we have presented a number of options, or ideas, or other thoughts about what we may or may not be able to do...at least ideas that we have had about what we can do moving forward that can hopefully allow us as waterskiers or wakeboarders or kneeboarders or bayliners to maybe ponder and think about in our little waterski world.
Things that we think could possible be useful or possible to our community, because, we are not a bunch of cretins that wish to kill bambi and hunt bald eagles (the bird!) and generally thrash what mother nature has provided us. I bet in all of our hearts we want to be as in sync and in touch with nature as your neighbor who eats granola, doesn't shower and wears ironically stupid t-shirts.
Case in point, the ODBF posted a posty post a little while ago where he lit into some dipshit about complaining that a show ski team, performing one show, on a lake for a town festival is ruining the wilderness and killing all the buffalo. Which, in and of itself, if fucking asinine. Listen bub, that fucking festival on those ground is going to do more to harm that water then a few boats.
FURTHERMORE!!! that god damn car you are driving to your job, which I assume uses energy to light lights and compute your computer, requires shit that is worse then a few boats zooming around for an hour or so. Asshole.
More or less, people are misguided in their angst. They see a few people having fun out on the lake and want to ruin that fun, without the facts. In essence they are fighting the wrong fight. The fight shouldnt be against the people that are simply enjoying themselves, in fact...it shouldn't be a fight, everyone should band together and either demand what they want or go do it themselves. Thats one of the weirder symptimatic issues with everything, its easy to get mad at the disadvantaged youth who went south, but, without looking at the situation surrounding the problem, it may be unfair to characterize "Dookie" from "The Wire" as a bad person, just a tragic figure of circumstance.
We are simply people who want to enjoy our god given abilities on the water. However we can and with whomever we can by whatever means we can.
The technology is out there for hybrids and/or clean burning boats. I mean, for christs sake they make a hybrid Tahoe! A five some thousand pound behemoth that gets 20/20. Amazing!
Hybrid technology is not the be all end all, despite what some people will have you beleive but, its a good start. Its something that we can agree is better then the current system....ish.
Hybrid technology is similar to the rich old lady getting plastic surgery to make her look tidy again. Its more of a band-aid on a situation that needs a more structural solution, vs. a quick fix that daddy rich pants provides because he wants to imagine banging a 20 year-old med student again.
What was that? You med daddy rich pants in college and he promised to take care of you? Yet, he left you emotionally hollow but socially and materialistically fulfilled? Good for you, go on real housewives of Trenton, NJ you vapid idiot.
You ever seen any of those shows? holy crickets. Its awful. I mean, live your life the way you want, sure, I am no one to judge, but, really?
We did bring up the idea of Hybrid Boat technology awhile ago on this interblag, and for a few weeks we were pretty jazzed about it. Trying to think of a way to do something...anything...to make something like this happen.
We didn't. BUT!!!!
I get the waterski magazine at the Rowboat compound. It normally comes late as the mailman is routinely scared off by otherworldly beings inhabiting the area. When I do finally get said glossy paged vestibule of waterski love I immediately close the plantation shutters, light a candle, fire up a joint, settle into my favorite recliner, eat a plate of fried zucchini and pass out.
I then wake up and read the mag on the shitter.
Its nice. And you know how you always have a stack sitting around the throne and you page through them from time to time? I just realized that *insert stupid pop culture joke here* happened!! ZOMG!
The other day I was paging through one of the mags and came back across a small article that stated there was a company that was coming out with a hybrid wakeboard boat!
/chill running up spine
Did they steal our idea? Doubtful.
In my most recent memory, the only real advances in our actual ski boats have come more from aesthetic fixes (i.e, towers, ballast systems, stereos, LCD dashes, et.al), bigger motors (meaning: more horsepower), or some hull stuff (strakes, lifters, twin tips, etc)
Now, in my own little bubble, this all rules. I love huge motors, I love big stereos and cool shit in my boat. Now, granted, this evolution of the boating industry has basically priced out everyone other then daddy rich pants. It sucks. Then again, it is what it is bra. (takes bong rip)
So someone, Epic Boats, had/has the foresight to stretch out and make something revolutionary. A hybrid boat, and not a piece of crap boat with 40 car batteries, but a real hybrid boat. Think of your weird smelly neighbors Prius, but, on the water...with cool graphics...and a huge stereo.
Minor complaint: Hey, its a hybrid, it runs on battery power. Why not turn off that music for a second so we can hear the boat cruising around all ninja like?
OK, so, lets get this out of the way first. This isn't really a "green" company. Their other boat, seems to be, the same boat, but with an 8.1 Liter 375 horse motor in it instead of a hybrid system.
So what right? At least they are trying! From their myspace page (people still use that site?) comes the following. Oh, don't bother clicking that link. Myspace is to formatting and taste what Jenna Haze is to romantic dinners.
San Diego, Calif. (February 26, 2009) – EPIC Wakeboats, manufacturer of “The World’s First Wakeboat”, announced today the release of “The World’s First Electric Hybrid Sport Boat”, the EPIC 23E. With its pioneering electric hybrid drive system, the EPIC 23E uses half the fuel of its combustion-powered equivalent, making this Luxury Sport Boat more environmentally friendly and economical than any other on the water.
EPIC Wakeboats CEO Chris Anthony said, “The EPIC 23E will change the way people think about water-sports. Not only is the design extremely environment-friendly, but with over 50% better fuel economy, it will have an impact on more than just fuel costs. This system increases range, decreases noise and still provides better wakeboarding performance then its combustion motor powered counterpart.”
At the core of the EPIC 23E is Flux Propulsion’s Marine Drive System. This hybrid drive system features an exceptionally powerful and compact drive motor that draws from cutting-edge battery technology. Staying true to EPIC’s philosophy of, “Rider Designed Engineering” the 23E features an easy to use touch screen interface that incorporates stereo and video entertainment with the GPS Speed Control and other core components.
With regard to coordinating system development between Flux Propulsion and EPIC Wakeboats, EPIC’s Director of Product Development, Matt Ostmeyer said, “Our combined dedication to both environmental responsibility and performance brought to life a remarkably efficient and powerful propulsion system that will revolutionize the sport boat industry, and we are proud to be a part of that.”
The only pricing for such a boat is found in a comment on the youtube video posted above and someone stated its about $100,000.
Two things to take from that. 1) Its a youtube video comment, which, surprisingly doesn't call into question someones sexual preference, their aversion to certain races or the weight of their mom/dog/family/wife/husband, their ignorance, the commentators ignorance or the size of their genitalia
Secondly being, WOW, thats expensive. Its not outlandish by any means, but...yo, 1/2ing my gas budget does not make up for the other $97,000 that I don't have.
Thats not really the point now is it? No, it isn't. Especially on this page. In fact, if we wanted to tackle the subject of pricing and demographics and the like, well, it would be alot longer then this post.
This is the sort of thing, the boat and the technology behind it, are things that we really should be, as a community, begin to embrace. Its a great technology, its not the future, the future will bring us things we can't comprehend yet. America and the world (for that matter) are full of really smart people who can devise ways to do things that we can't even pretend to think of now.
Did you ever think ten years ago, that, instead of making crappy phone calls from a lousy Nokia phone that you would be making really crappy cell phone calls from a miniature web-browser?
Did you ever think that you would actually be aggravated at an airport that you would have to pay for internet access? Hey Chicago, I'm looking at you! Hey Cincinnati!...love ya babe. Hey Helsinki!...dont know...never been. HEY Orlando!...you get the idea.
For that matter, I was on a plane the other day and actually was sort of grumpy i couldnt pull up the webs on the plane.
I mean, things change so quick, that by the time Chevy finally comes out with the Volt (a hail mary if I have ever seen one) the actual technology won't be that far fetched.
I remember back when the fam would pile into the contact Chevette and go to Epcot and all that stuff looked so futuristic and now it looks like a damn Hyper Color shirt, its stupid now.
But, Carburetors led to fuel injection with lead to direct injection which will lead to ?????
Turbo chargers lead to super chargers which lead to sequential turbos which will lead to ????
Three on the tree lead to automatic transmissions which lead to manumatic transmissions which lead to the DSG tranny which will lead to ???
Blues and delta music lead to Led Zep which led to me being conceived. HEY!!!
None the less, the hybrid technology is not the technological Jesus we should pray to, its a pleasant deity to be sure, but, not your final destination.
But, its a start, its a jumping off point.
Think about your boating habits. Back when I worked for the CRB our boats rarely made it above idle. Beer doesn't drink itself after work you know...and an electric boat would have made the cruising much more enjoyable.
I love the fact that a smaller company like Epic has the balls to try this. To push things forward.
They are like the Apple Computers to the PC. They push things, they make things we don't even know we need yet. Someone has to stand up and get things moving in a positive direction and thank god that Epic has done that.
It may not work out for them. The proverbial roadside is littered with people who try and fail. Fail isn't the right word. They just don't succeed. Yeah, thats a semantic argument, its like, you get laid or you don't.
But, the legacy or the trail that is blazed is left behind them.
Think of it this way. In every relationship you have had, your mom doesn't count, you go into it with so much positive energy you could light up a small town. Eventually one of two things happen, either you click and you stick together for awhile, or your bulb burns out and you go your separate ways.
Either way you have learned a million zillion different things about yourself, that situation, and what to do moving forward.
As they say, the answer is ALWAYS no unless you ask. If you never try to move forward with new and innovative things (admittedly I am stretching this analogy) you will always be stuck with what you already have, which, isn't near as good as it could be.
Henry Ford said way back in the day when asked why he built a motorized car, "If I asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses"
Thats where we are. We don't want faster horses. We want a better way to do our damn thing, and here is hoping that this boat is the one to get us off the horse and into something better.