What’s Your DIN?

windjammer cruises in Maine, stress relief, relaxing vacations, funny blog post


Good morning everyone.

“DIN is an acronym for Deutsches Institut fur Normung, the German regulatory body that oversees the standardization of settings for every field of technology.”

Recently at an alpine ski race I was standing in the starting gate about to launch myself down through a maze of red and blue poles stuck in the snow in a seemingly random pattern of horizontal and vertical distribution. It can be quite a thrill getting this 50-year-old body to do what my 19-year-old mind dreams of. I get nervous excitement raising my pulse at every start. Sometimes it even dawns on me that this thrill seeking activity might be a really silly or even dangerous thing to do.

But it is all safe enough because I know the DIN setting for the release on my bindings will mostly keep me from harm. If I somehow get out of control and crash the chances are good that I will walk away from a catastrophic “yard sale” with nothing more than a shattered ego. For those of you unfamiliar with the term “yard sale” just imagine gloves, goggles, ski poles and skis strewn about the hill or hanging in nearby tree branches as if thrown from a helicopter. During one race I literally leapt right out of my skis at the starting gate as I kicked back to achieve some miraculous lift-off like a World Cup ski racer.

Now all of this has had me thinking that life has a DIN setting too. The question is when, under extreme stress, do your bindings release and can you adjust that setting so you don’t get hurt or injure others in the ensuing “yard sale”? Experienced ski techs know that people and bindings change so that DINs need to be checked regularly with properly calibrated equipment helping each skier keep their optimum DIN. The idea is to allow yourself to neither release before you have had a chance to experience the thrill of success or release too late harming yourself and others around you.

My therapist is my mental ski tech. She claims with proper care and feeding I can be taught to do simple tasks and with well-balanced medications I can actually achieve some modicum of success without hurting myself or anyone else. But sailing is my real therapy. A week out on Penobscot Bay allows me to double check my DIN setting. So, with that thought in mind, have you checked your bindings lately? Or is it time to book a cruise along the Maine coast and double check you DIN?

Have a great day. Be well. Do good.


  1. By the way, Jen has taken away my clothes pins so this should be the last of me looking like forgotten laundry. Also, many thanks to the Tinker of Middlebury, Dumont Rush, for the port and starboard bamboo ski poles. Don’t you wish you had some!

  2. Being one of advanced age,I say do what you can while you can. Then when can’t do it any more sleep longer!

  3. Are you Geländesprunging? Those gates look pretty narrow! I’m happy to be following your blog. We do a lot of boating out on the bay. Perhaps our wakes shall cross this summer.

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