"In the late eighties I began writing
a column called Hard Aground with Eddie for Coastal
Cruising Magazine, a publication based in Beaufort, North
Carolina. Soon after the publication moved its offices to
New Jersey in 1998 the magazine died a slow death. Anyone
with similar skills and talent could have ruined the publication
in less time but it is my lone bit of notoriety so I take
pride in this singular accomplishment."
"The concept of Hard Aground with Eddie was
conceived when Bert Quay, the editor of (then) Carolina
Cruising Magazine, read a couple of essays I'd written
about trying sail a boat with my wife. I didn't know at the
time that this was impossible but he seemed genuinely amused
that I was naive enough to think a woman of my wife's refined
nature would enjoy peeing in a bucket in the cockpit of my
ComPac 16 sailboat. He informed me that I had correctly spelled
the minimum number of words to meet his editorial standards
and since someone on the staff had mistakenly sold one ad
too many for the next issue, the publication was in need of
some copy to balance out that page."
"I didn't know this at the time. I thought he was genuinely
impressed with my writing abilities. I've been told I still
suffer from this delusion."
"Bert decided the column needed a catchy name. I purchased
a few sailing publications and realized that all columnist
were experts in something. I, of course, was an expert on
running off the boat ramp, running aground on clearly marked
shoals and running away from the stress of family responsibilities.
I also noticed that people on boats cussed and yelled a lot
when things didn't work and since nothing on my boat ever
worked, I decided I would become an expert on taking it easy
and going with the tidal flow. That has and remains the general
concept of the column. Over the years Hard Aground with
Eddie has focused on the setbacks we face in life and
on the water and how to enjoy the passing of tides."
"When you run aground in a boat you have two choices.
You can either kick and cuss and call the towboat captain
or you can build a nest in the cockpit, grab a good book and wait for the
tide to float you off. It's all a matter of perspective and
pennies and I'm cheap so I usually wait for the tide."
Hard Aground with Eddie continues to appear, on occasion,
in a number of boating publications including, but not limited
to; Town Dock, Lake Norman Times, and Living