With respect, Bill, it can never be an innocent question when it comes from someone with a history of mindlessly berating our project. It is always going to be a loaded question when it comes from that idiot-mindset.
I am very reasonable with people who have genuine questions, or comments, along the lines of "Why's it taking so long?" or "Has the project stalled?" or whatever.
Here are the reasons I get angry ...
In this internet age, people who mindlessly criticise cause reputational damage that then creates the very circumstances they are criticising. They don't take time to check the true facts - it's too much bother for them - and so hurl half-facts and just plain made-up tosh about, which others then read and take as fact, which then results in making my job of bringing the project to fruition that much harder.
Getting down to specifics, I received an e-mail last night from one of our keen supporters - of which there are, thank heavens, a great many - telling me that there were ill-informed comments being made on the Bluebird
Supporters' Club Facebook page. I have never looked at this site, as I've more important things to do than "support" Bluebird
- I made my £100 donation to the cause years ago, and my mind is on the future, not the past - but I thought I'd take a look and it was the standard mixture of some positive comment, some negative, and most just not really knowing what they were talking about but well-meaning comment, which is fair enough.
So my focus was momentarily on what we might call "outside influences" when up on the BBP forum springs the gallant "Black Knight" - whoever he is: I would love to see his glittering CV - who clearly thought the photo of the boat he'd seen on the BBSC FB site was brand-new. In actual fact, that photo was taken back in May 2014. I'd never seen it before, myself, but I know the venue in Sheffield and I remember us exhibiting the boat there. The key point is this. A very similar photo, taken on exactly the same day in 2014, was displayed on the Home page of our website for all of three years
and this idiot had clearly never taken the trouble to notice it, but of course he did have time during that time to take digs at us on other forums for our lack of progress.
What we displayed at Sheffield in 2014 - at three events at two different venues in the city - was, to use a current K7 quote, 90% the real thing.
We did display a mock-up for a few years, many years ago. Just like the Bloodhound
folks do now and have been doing for years and years - with the notable exception that ours was an awful lot more imaginative than theirs, in that we actually had the real spaceframe, engine, fuel tank, instrument panel, fire-suppression system, on-board batteries, etc, etc - inside it, with Perspex set into the skin all over the place, and internal lighting, so people could see the whole boat partly in real-life at that stage in construction and partly as we hoped it might look when we'd finished it.
For reasons best known to himself, "Black" - or is it "Knight"?: I haven't got an Electoral Roll or phone book handy to look him up, and besides, he hides behind a dumb name on the internet so he doesn't have to be accountable for anything he says - has clearly assumed, ever since then, that Quicksilver
is a mock-up.
There's more, but I'll cut it short for now. If he'd looked at the 'Current Work' page on our website any time over the past few weeks, he'd have seen and read that we are working away fairly happily on new stuff much of the time ...
http://www.quicksilver-wsr.com/current- ... struction/
It really doesn't take a lot of effort to find this stuff or pick up the phone and ring me or e-mail me for info - but that's just the point. Because, with even less effort, people like "Black" can simply slag something off, damaging its prospects of success in the process, and then turn back to their endless collection of books that say how Britain once held the World Water Speed Record.
(Edited to correct a spelling error - and it'll be marked-up as edited twice now, because I've written this comment. For those who don't know, I'm dyslexic, so writing anything properly is a frustrating process).