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To be a coxswain is a special trust; all that power poised to explode on your word. I know that to rowers, the boat feels at the start as if it takes forever to get up to speed, but to us in the coxswain's seat, it is like riding a missile. On that first three-quarter stroke, when the starter says "Go," the oars explode in a blast of white water, and the back of that coxswain's seat kicks us in the butt, it is the most exhilarating feeling in the world.

It is the coxswains' job to earn that trust. "We must," in Shakespeare's words "study deserving" to be our best for our rowers, to learn our craft with the same intensity as they learn theirs, to contribute to the boat in every way, and to become that invisible extra oar. We coxswains may joke about "coming second after God," but we know it is the rowers who give us everything.

The material on the following pages is intended to draw the coxing fraternity together -- sometimes on the light side (coxswains must always keep light), and sometimes on the serious. Hope you enjoy it.



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