Thursday, June 26, 2014


Who wouldn't want a swordfish bill hanging on their wall! It would be a good conversation piece for your office.

One day, I was expressing an interest in making extra money. Living in Key West is not cheap. It was suggested that I paint on swordfish bills and sell them. I had never heard of doing such a thing, but when I found out what they sell for, I said, "I'm in!"

Preparing the bills for painting... well, I'll just say it's a stinky job and a long process. Chuck and I are both painting, and we have had positive feedback with our finished product. The hard part, is coming up with a design that prospective customers would fall in love with and be compelled to buy. My question to all of you guys; if you were vacationing in Key West, what would catch your eye? Would you want something that reminds you of your time in Key West? And what would that be: coconut, palm trees, fish, beach, boats, sunset on the water...tell me.

The surface to paint on a bill, is limited in size. Most are only 3 inches wide and they average 36 inches in length. I also want to try and make swords from bills. I've seen pictures of this done, and I think it is really cool. My only obstacle is the grip. I would prefer to buy a grip, but am having difficulty finding such a thing. I may have to build one from wood. It can be done, but I would like to have it made from metal. If anyone has any ideas, I am open to suggestions.

Years ago, I played around with oils, but never acrylics. Acrylics are a better medium for the bills, so I am learning the ways of the acrylic paints. They do not blend like oils, and I get frustrated because it doesn't come out like the picture I have in my head. Maybe it's my talent lacking, not the fault of the paint... nah, it's the paint.

Click on the image to enlarge the picture.

Monday, June 23, 2014

TX 200: DAY 2

Lot less "exciting" than day 1 , but no less the learning experieince. I should have filmed going aground but was too busy dealing with it. I'm sure it would have been least now! LOL Then, though,.... I was watching the duckers disappear ahead of me and I needed to follow them to find the impromptu destination that was setup for that day after we reached camp 2. They had agreed to sail to Padre Islnad Yacht Club for the night...a distance of around 10 miles....and nighttime was coming fast. To say I was in scramble mode when they said.. "uh aren't gonna make it through here (as I slid hard aground) ...You'r gonna have to turn around...find a channel around the other side of this island that'll get you to the ICW" would be an understatement. In was no big deal. I mean what's the worse case? Maybe I end up camping solo that night..I wasnt gonna die or anything.... least not as long as a stingray ..or gater....or bullshark didnt eat me while I was slogging the boat back upwind to find sailable water. HAHAHA The audio is very weak on this video...sorry.... if you use earbuds and crank it up it's audible... but barely. Operator error on my part. Had the waterproof back on the camera housing and it really muffles everything.
Sean Mulligan & Scout

Sunday, June 22, 2014

TX 200 : DAY ONE

Sean put this video together of his first day during the 2014 Texas 200. I wanted to share it with you, thought you might enjoy it.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

SCOUT in the TEXAS 200

200 miles in fives days. The Texas 200  2014 is in the books. There was lots of wind, very little wind, broken masts, broken rudders, capsizing, towing, and a lot of sea stories told. If I looked on Facebook once, I logged in a million times, keeping up with Scout and the Ducks. Sean and Scout had an amazing trip, and Sean came away with some wild sea stories, and a new appreciation for home built boats and the sailors that sail them.

Here are a few of the pictures from Sean and some of the other guys.

photo by Charlie Jones

photo by Charlie Jones

photo by Sean Mulligan

photographer unknown

photo by Paul Moffitt
 Photo by Capt. Votaw
Scout looks like Momma Duck leading the way for the Ducklings.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Texas 200 2014

No, I won't be there, but TARDIS... I mean SCOUT will be. Sean Mulligan, SCOUT's owner, is taking her back to her homeland. It was my dream for TARDIS to make the trip up the Texas coast, because I know she can make it easily with her shallow draft. I will not be at the helm, but I am confident that she will carry Sean safely for those 200 miles, and they will make fond memories together. Sean was kind enough to offer me the tiller for a couple days, if I would make the trip this year. But, I just can't get away from work that long.  Maybe someday my ship will come in and I will have the opportunity to run and play as much as I would like. Okay, y'all can quit laughing now... it's a nice dream though, right?

There is something special about this year's cruise. LIVESTRONG. Chuck Pierce decided to honor cancer survivors, and those that have lost the battle, with their name on his boat.

For a donation, a name would be placed on his 8' Duck sailboat that will sail this year. Word spread, others wanted to join. Many will be sailing this 200 mile journey in a Duck, at last count there were 13 Ducks in the flock. This is awesome. Sean is not sailing a Duck, but is participating in the fund raising... SCOUT is an honorary Duck.

"Every single name on every boat that has them will serve not only as a way to honor cancer survivors and victims, but as a way that they can be with us on the trip, if not physically, then in our thoughts."

To read more about their trip, go to Sean's blog:
Sean has SPOT if anyone wants to keep up with them. I know I will.