Spanker Buccaneer Gift Exchange

Donna Benson marvels at the size of the Daisy Spanker. Photo: Mike Ferring

The “Daisy Spanker” gift was the hit of the night, a “sail” fashioned from some giant-sized women’s undies, first received by Donna Benson, then Buccaneer-claimed by Deb Heisler, and finally pirated by Gene Walentiny (who denied speculation about what he planned for them).

Sharon Bell confessed to gifting the Spanker and to cooking up the colorful description of the origin of the “sail,” reprinted below.

The event was the annual AYC gift exchange, emceed by Tom Errickson, and rich with the usual assortment of alcoholic beverage gifts, including a couple we’re still trying to figure out. Velvet Falernum anyone?

Then the meeting turned to the serious business of choosing the “winner” of the Blunder Bucket, a tradition almost as old as the Daisy Spanker. Two worthy nominations were submitted: George Tingom for leading the Governor’s Cup until he decided to round the wrong island and Paul Liszewski for toppling overboard Rolling in the Deep when racing. Paul’s crew had refused all inquiries about what happened, claiming some kind of crew-confidentiality agreement, but James Morphis was an eyewitness and embellished the nomination with great detail.

George Tingom, proud recipient of the Blunder Bucket. Photo: Mike Ferring

Still, it would be hard to deny George the honor for booting the Governor’s Cup, the crowd loudly applauded and he proudly accepted.

Here’s Sharon’s account of the origin of the “Daisy Spanker.”

Webster’s Dictionary “spanker”

  1. a fore-and-aft sail or a mast that is aftermost in a sailing vessel
  2. something outstandingly fine or large

The “Daisy” Spanker is a light air reaching sail, where the apparent wind has a significant effect to create angles less than 90 degrees. It is guaranteed to gain interest and pause your competition long enough for you to finish first in your fleet.

The idea for this sail was conceived by Robert “Black Heart” McDoogle in 1865. To many people, he was as cold as a well-diggers toe in January, but he loved his wife (Daisy) who was of voluptuous size and suffered an unfortunate tendency to pass gas after eating certain foods. One day after a particularly forceful series of emissions he had an idea, rushed on deck with Daisy’s bloomers and hoisted them off a loose line on the aft mast. Low and behold, the bloomers filled with wind and held tight while the ship lurched forward. Captain McDoogle named the new sail a “Daisy Spanker” in honor of his wife.

The 2017 Christmas party was presided over by the snowbear. Photo: Mike Ferring