We are really looking forward to this trip, but I can assure what we will NOT be doing....imbibing alcohol. I am totally against the evil nectar, given my past "issues" and inability to control myself. Since I cannot drink, I give my lady stern looks when she orders a Zima or sangria. If I am unable to cut loose like that, she should suffer with me. But even if she does down a few wine coolers, I know she will control herself (like I couldn't) and will avoid getting on inflatable rafts on the Gulf. The same cannot be said for Jerry Whipple of the Tampa area.
Everyone knows it's not safe to drink and drive. Better beware of drinking and getting on a pool float, too.We plan on visiting Marvene, who has a nice condo down in that area. I will ask her if she knows old Jerry Whipple. She seems to know a lot of the drunks down there, so they may have crossed paths before.
Especially if you're in the Gulf of Mexico.
The U.S. Coast Guard on Wednesday afternoon rescued a man on a pool float who had drifted about a mile out into the gulf.
The man, identified as Jerry Whipple, is "suspected of being extremely inebriated," said Petty Officer First Class Mariana O'Leary.
"The message here is this guy got lucky. He got really lucky," O'Leary said. "Depending on what the tides and currents are doing, he could have never been seen again."
According to the Coast Guard spokeswoman, a Good Samaritan who was on his 22-foot recreational boat called in to report an unconscious man floating well offshore.
When officials with the Coast Guard and a Clearwater Fire Rescue unit arrived about 12:20 p.m., they found the man unconscious on the float. He was wearing a life jacket.
He later regained consciousness and was taken to paramedics waiting at Coast Guard Station Sand Key.
Whipple, whose age and address were unknown Wednesday, was taken to Largo Medical Center with non life-threatening injuries, said Clearwater Fire spokeswoman Beth Watts.