In my days at MIT I was quite adept at punting. In fact, I punted so well that I had to take 8.03 twice. I punted Oxon-style for the first time yesterday and I think I've got the hang of that, too. It was pleasantly temperate yesterday and I had nothing much to do, so I joined Shailen, John B, and American Steve for a bit of punting at the Head of the River.
Much like MIT, any good day spent punting on the Isis involves drinking a bunch of beer. We featured some Stella, the rhythm and spirit of Jamaica, and some Pringles. John and Shailen took the first couple of turns doing the actual punting and I unwisely sat in a seat facing away from the place where you stand with the pole, so I gained absolutely no useful information about technique before I actually took my first turn. After crashing into other boaters and the shore several times I finally got the hang of how to push and then drag the pole in the water to steer. I also began to wonder what moron decided it was a good idea to steer a boat with a 15 foot pole instead of something sensible like a rudder.
The real beneficiary of my adventure is you, dear reader, as I'll be able to take you punting the next time you come to visit me in Oxford.
10 months ago