Saturday marked the first actual race in the strange and terrible saga of the America's Cup. Sailing aficionados summed that one up in one word: Boring!
It'll take more words than that, however, to describe what went down at the Bayview Boat Club not far from AT&T Park, on the day of their annual "Plastic Classic" race. And it wasn't boring.
A nude man infiltrated the club, made off with a life jacket, hurled himself in the water, boarded a docked sailboat at the nearby Mariposa Hunters Point Yacht Club, rendezvoused with aquatic police -- and was charged with attempted grand theft.
A large gardening implement was also involved.
It was crowded midday at the Bayview Boat Club. Unlike the America's Cup -- where two vessels racing was a 100 percent increase from prior days -- a full 58 boats registered for the yearly Plastic Classic.
So many guests were coming through the front door that it was propped open. Normally, visitors are required to put on a name tag, notes fleet captain Jerry Minister. But in the crush, these rules can be ignored. Especially if someone has no shirt on which to affix a name tag.
Unlike your prototypical yacht club, Bayview is very down-to-earth place. A dude with ratty black pants, no shoes, and no shirt doesn't exactly fit in, but he didn't really stand out, either. When such a man snatched an orange life preserver, however, that stood out. Folks peered up from their beers as voices shouted out "Hey! You can't take that! Put that back!"
At around this point, the man dropped his pants. They stayed on the dock, but he made his exit.
The man hurled himself into the water, and swam-and-walked his way around 500 yards toward the ballpark to the Mariposa Hunters Point club. At some point, he came into possession of a large stick that Mariposa club secretary Deanna Desin says was a gardening hoe. Asked how he got it, she laughs and replies "You know, I have no idea."