What We're Watching
John Harris is a bit of a Renaissance man. A trained musician who loves not only jazz but just about any sort of music, he also is the founder and owner of Chesapeake Light Craft, a build-your-own-boat company that sells complete kits and plans for everything from kayaks and rowboats to pocket sailers and power skiffs. The company’s YouTube channel showcases the latest additions to the fleet, has useful instructional videos with tips and tricks for building stitch-and-glue-style boats, and even has a multipart series showing Harris building a kayak from start to finish. Look for the channel under the company name.
More Salty Reads
Thar She Blows
When most folks think of whaling in America—and perhaps more specifically in New England—places such as New Bedford, Massachusetts, and Mystic, Connecticut, usually come to mind. Maine, on the other hand, is often associated with lobstering, but the state has a rich history in whaling, the now-outlawed practice that once helped fill oil lamps and light the world from darkness. Whaling in Maine is a new book by Charles H. Lagerbom that examines how whaling helped create a vast economy in the Pine Tree State, leading to the development of industries that built whaling ships, whale boats, oars and other maritime-related products. The whaling industry lasted nearly 200 years, helping sprout towns and communities around the Maine coast that supplied people and products to the whaling fleets. ($22, The History Press)
Tie Yourself in Knots
Looking for a new daily challenge? We can’t think of a better one than learning how to tie a new knot with the passing of each day. Push aside the diet and self-help books and open up the pages of Nic Compton’s new book, A Knot a Day: 365 Knot Challenges for All Abilities, which aims to twist your fingers in all sorts of shapes. As you’d expect, the book covers all the basics any good skipper or seaman should know. In addition, Compton uses illustrations to guide you through other knots, including useful hitches, bends, whippings and splices, and more complicated knot patterns such as those used tor key rings, bracelets and doormats. ($20, Adlard Coles) — Gary Reich
Lazy Afternoons with Fairline
Fairline Yachts, the British builder of a wide range of performance-oriented luxury cruising boats and yachts, is curating a series of five Spotify playlists. With names such as “Lazy Afternoons,” “The Lounge,” “After Sunset,” “Miami” and “Chilled Balearics,” the mellow playlists provide a relaxing atmosphere, whether you’re listening aboard a 60-footer in the Mediterranean or an 18-foot poling skiff in the Keys. Simply search for Fairline Yachts on Spotify.