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Friday, July 1, 2022

Smooth Seas Don’t Make Good Sailors

Chad Brislawn
A lifelong Muscatine resident, Chad Brislawn has a passion for motorcycles and writing. He writes No Baffles No Brakes, for Discover Muscatine newspaper.

Muscatine Living

So, I’m sitting here watching the rain drops stream down the windowpane, thinking to myself, “Man, it sure would be nice to go out riding.” It’s my last day of vacation before I have to go back to the grind tomorrow, and it’s been raining for the last two days. As I sit here all dry and whining to myself about the inconvenience of the weather, I chuckle a little bit and think of my wife.

She woke me up at six o’clock this morning asking for rain gear as she was headed out the door for day two of her motorcycle riding course. And go figure, it’s been raining for both days. That’s right! The lady that does your community calendar is a tattooed, motorcycle ridin’, newspaper slingin’, hot–I better quit while I’m ahead. Can’t take it back now, it’s in print!

But I couldn’t help but feel bad for her. Really? Rain for both days? She’s trying to learn. It’s cold. It’s windy. Uh, no fun.

And then, I think of a phrase that has stuck with me for years. “Smooth seas don’t make good sailors.” I don’t even remember where I heard it anymore, but I always go right back to that quotation whenever I’m dealing with a less than desirable situation that must be done. Or, “Embrace the Suck!” as they say in the military.

When you’re trying to learn a new skill, adversity is key. If you don’t encounter resistance and learn to overcome it, can you ever really master something? How you respond to challenge speaks volumes about your character. Are you the “throw in the towel” type, or are you the “suck it up and make things happen” type? You have to answer that for yourself. And trust me, as someone who has spent a lifetime as a habitual procrastinator, it took a long time for that phrase to really mean something to me.

I remember how tough she is and how bad she wants this. She didn’t wake me up asking if they can reschedule her class. She woke me up asking where our rain gear was.

Say you sit at home and never ride when the rain is coming down, you wait for the sunny days and just the right temperature on the perfect weekend, when you have time of course, because let’s face it, who wants to be uncomfortable or inconvenienced right? How much riding do you think you’ll get in this summer? What will you do if that perfect, sunny day starts pouring on you? You’ll find yourself out there soaking wet with no rain gear and no experience sitting in a puddle waiting for your wife to come pick you up, and that’s cool too! I’m not here to judge anyone or tell you how to ride. If you don’t want to ride in the rain, don’t ride in the rain. Nobody will make fun of you for that… cou- (puddle jumper)-gh.

All I’m going to say is, it’s Sunday. It’s raining and my wife wants to know why you’re not out riding?

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