Captain's Log: Stardate 10848.4
Northwest Airlines turned me into an asshole (keep to yourself your comments that I was an asshole long before I flew on Northwest, please.)

The day started with waking up in the plush, ultra-comfortable bed at the 5-star Conrad Hotel in Indianapolis. Room service breakfast was delivered and I put on my jacket and tie for a presentation at the Ice Miller law firm. I printed my boarding pass and rechecked my schedule. 3:30 flight, arrives at LGA at 5:50, carry-on bag, car was right outside the terminal -- plenty of time to make it to the Enterprise for the race.

The presentation ended at 1:15, giving me time for a nice, leisurely walk to the cab and a slow, comfortable ride to the airport, marveling at the new stadium they're building for the Colts.

No security lines. A good lunch. Check the monitors -- everything is on time. I even got to change my seat to from 4A to 1B so I can get out of the plane that much faster.

And then it all started. First I was greeted by the Northwest stewardess, Jill. Now I know they prefer to be called "Flight Attendants", but this woman was a stewardess. Nasty from the start. If you had an iPod in your lap (off,) it had to be stowed for take-off. Like the plane was going to take off upside down or something.

You know how when body-builders arms shake when they lift heavy weights? That's what her face did when she tried to smile. The muscles just couldn't handle it. And stupid me: I changed my seat to 1B so I can have a front-row seat. To quote Scarface, she had a look on her face like she hasn't been -- well, you know the rest.

We taxi out to the runway and stop. After twenty minutes, the co-pilot comes on and says that ATC (air traffic control) is looking for a place in the air to put us for the trip to LaGuardia. Twenty more minutes passed. And then I yelled out, "It's a big fucking air! Take off already goddamit!" OK. That was on the inside.

We finally took off and Jill served me water. I asked for nuts, but she said that would be $3.00. $3.00 for nuts! "I'll tell you what Jill. I'll give you three dollars if you take my nuts and..." OK. That was on the inside too.

The ride was smooth. But, the pilots never turned off the seatbelt light. After an hour twenty in the air, I asked Jill if I can go to the bathroom. She replied "The seatbelt light is on. I can't let you go." On the inside, I replied, "Like you could stop me, you bitch. How about if I pee on your seat?!" But, instead, came out, "We sat on the ground for 40 minutes. Could you ask them to turn off the seatbelt light?" She picked up the phone and the light was out in a second. You should have seen the line.

We made up time in the air (why can't they just fly that fast all the time?), landing at LGA five minutes late, and after passing over City Island and seeing the Enterprise from my seat (Helps having a 30 foot long name on the side of your boat) it gave me a moment of comfort – just a moment.

I looked at my watch, which thankfully Jill didn't have me stow for landing. I can still make it. And then we stopped on the tarmac again. This time for something the co-pilot referred to as a traffic jam. I think it was because they didn't want Jill in the city depressing millions of New Yorkers. We got to the gate and a grabbed my bag, running through the airport to my SUV. I floored it to the exit and inserted my parking ticket. The helpful attendant there smiled as I put in my credit card and then asked me if I wanted a receipt.

"No! No fucking receipt! Open the goddamn gate and let me out of here, dammit!" This time it was out loud. See? Northwest turned me into an asshole.

I called Ensign Ellen on the way, weaving through traffic on the Whitestone Bridge and then using the fire lane on City Island (now I know why they call it a "Pathfinder".) The crew was getting the ship ready and I was going to make it. Yes! "We need ice," she said.

"What the-! There's eight of you and nobody got fucking ice!" Back on the inside again. Calm down. I'm going to make it.

And made it, I did. With ice. We powered out to the starting area and got ready. And, I was impressed to see all who had made it, including Lt. Kurt who had a long night of commuting ahead.

Our start was perfect, even with the Klingon vessel Breakaway not giving us room at the start and after watching USS Tango collide with the Romulan ship Forza. We were second around the first windward mark and our spinnaker set went so well, Captain Dave on the foredeck asked, "Brittany who?"

Despite numerous amounts of prodding from Commander Richard (I just came off a flight with the Stewardess Bitch from Hell - you're not going to phase me,) I played the shifting winds and we gained tons on the lead boat.

Which brings me to a point. As I said last night, "I may not always be right, but I'm never in doubt." That being said, I truly value the crews' input and suggestions. I enjoy the feedback and communication. But, to be perfectly clear, my decisions, agree with them or not, are to be followed. If you can't, or won't, do that, please let me know and I'll find you another boat to sail on.

And, I know it's fun to watch the sunset or other boats, but let's at least try to pay attention to the Enterprise during maneuvers, OK?

The first take down was a bit sloppy and key people ditched their posts during key moments at the rounding. Add to that a windless hole at the third mark, and our fate was sealed.

Still, I was very pleased with the crews' performance in a variety of conditions. The first two legs showed us -- we can do this. Well done, everyone. Well done.

Details coming soon about the Volvo Rolex Montauk Worlds Regatta. Stay tuned!