Back at Blue Dolphin and Affiliate Links

We got Emet back to Blue Dolphin in Seabrook on Saturday with the help of Jerry and Alisa.  Jodi really never wants to set foot on a moving boat again, so she and Alisa took the dogs while Jerry and I sailed back.  It was a pretty tough 8 hour sailing slog, but the wind was good the whole way at around 15 to 20 knots.  It was kinda flukey and that’s what made the sailing a physical ordeal.  Emet is pretty tender at first (rounds UP into the wind in a gust), but when the wind settles in, she stiffens up and gives a very pleasant and easy sail.  Unfortunately, the wind was very “gusty” ALL day and so we did zig-zag sailing the whole time we sailed.  It was actually comical at times.

I honestly haven’t had a bad day of sailing.  Even when all hell was breaking loose, it was good.

The best moment of the whole trip was when a pelican was headed exactly opposite of us.  It flew up to the mast and literally hovered there for 10 to 15 seconds.  It was 20 feet above us and just a couple of feet from the mast and it was floating there.  It was looking down at us while we were looking up at it.  I finally took a look down to check our heading and I had drifted 90 degrees to the east, WELL off course.  Jerry and I had a good laugh about that.  And once I realized that I had turned eastward 90 degrees, the fact that the pelican hovered right at the mast that whole time apparently stationary, made it that much more miraculous.  I really do love watching and interacting with nature.

We’ll have Emet up for sale in the next week or so.  I’m truly going to miss her.  We’ve been through a lot in the past 3 years together.  Makes my stomach kinda queasy and brings a lump to my throat.  I hope she knows that it’s nothing she did wrong and that the new owner loves and cares for her like I did.  To paraphrase Tom Hanks in A League of Their Own:  

Are you crying? Are you crying? Are you crying?! There’s no crying! There’s no crying in sailing!

On the website/blog front you may have noticed that there’s a sidebar section now labeled “Affiliate Links”.

I struggled for almost a year about whether to attempt to derive income from the blog.  I knew for absolute 100% certain that I would not do advertising.  I had thought about some product offering (apparel and/or stickers), but just couldn’t find exactly what I was looking for (still looking).  I’m not going to sell something that I wouldn’t use.  And I’m pretty particular about my clothing, mainly its fit, function, and longevity.  “Fashion” isn’t so much a concern.  I’ve got a shirt from high school that I STILL wear on a regular basis.

Some blogs have the “Support us” button where you can send money to them.  Quite a few of the sailor/cruiser blogs have one, but it just gave me an icky feeling to slap one on the website.

There’s the membership paradigm, but that’s truly a no go.  Ask newspapers how the pay wall has worked for them.  There’s even two cruiser blogs and two hiker blogs of which I’m aware that still operate on that outdated (as far as I’m concerned) paradigm.  There are some areas where a membership paradigm will work (Patreon perhaps), but my blog isn’t one of them.

And then there’s the affiliate programs.  You’ve seen them, though you may not have been aware of what was going on.

Here’s a very good explanation of how it works:  https://andrewskurka.com/2016/transparency-support-favorite-blogs-affiliate/

And it was probably Andrew’s website that really changed how I thought about and perceived the whole affiliate program.  I don’t know him personally, but having consumed a lot of his posts,  and after reading his gear book and viewing some of his presentations, I have a lot of respect for him.

Most of my previous experiences with affiliate links were skeezy at best.  I would click on a link with a preconceived notion of where I was going based on the outgoing link URL.  Unfortunately, I never seemed to “land” on that URL, but was redirected somewhere else . . . that most often I didn’t want to be.  So, it left a very bad taste in my mouth.

I suppose it left a bad taste in a lot of people’s mouths, thus the FTC gave rules on it. (CFR here)   And affiliate program providers started making and enforcing rules because bad business practices were, in the end, costing them sales and customer loyalty.

So, after a ton of soul searching, I have decided to join the fray.  I’ve already linked to products and companies in previous posts that I have used and like simply as a resource for anyone reading the blog.  I’ll still be doing the same thing, just with the potential to earn a commission, if you will.

In the future any post that has affiliate links will be labeled as such right at the top so that you, the reader, will be aware.

And here’s my disclosure page:  https://www.emet.us/us/affiliate-links/  You can also find it right there at the top of the Affiliate Links section of the website sidebar.

If you plan on purchasing something from one of the affiliates in the sidebar, and you would like to support us, click on the affiliate link and then make your purchase.  It doesn’t cost you anything extra and we get a few fractions of a dollar.  It will help support the blog and will enable me to earn a living doing some things that I truly enjoy:  writing, photography, and getting outdoors.

Honestly, let me know how you feel about it?  Love the idea?  Am I the devil incarnate?  Something in between? 

The "S" Bank
Why Do You Choose to Suffer?

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