Credit to Jezebel for the original email! INTER-SERVICE ROWING COMPETITION The Royal Navy, The Army and the RAF entered teams into the Henley Regatta. Each team practiced hard and long to reach their peak performance, but on the day the RN won by a mile and the RAF team left feeling discouraged and depressed. The RAF decided that the reason for the crushing defeat had to be found. An enquiry was launched (sic) and made up of Senior Officers to investigate and recommend appropriate action. They concluded that the primary difference between the two teams was that the RN boat had 8 Seamen rowing and 1 Officer steering, whilst the RAF had 1 Airman rowing and 8 Officers and SNCOs steering. So, the Air Force Board hired a consulting agency (for such a large fee that it required the disbanding of a Squadron ..although the Squadron was not actually disbanded, just dispersed to different units across the country, but it looked that way to the TLB holders). The Consultants report said that the RAF team had too many people steering and not enough people actually rowing. Based on this the RAF Chief of Staff proposed historic and sweeping changes to prevent a repeat of the defeat the next year. The team organisational structure was totally realigned to 4 Steering Officers, 3 Deputy Steering SNCOS and 1 Asst Steering Airman. They also implemented a performance system, under the catchy name Total Rollocks 2001 claiming this would give the Airman rower greater encouragement to row harder. The programme included a motivational CD-Rom, a Training Conference in London, a Road Show that toured RAF units across the country, Dining-in nights and a promised a Three day Grant incentive for success. The Air Force Board issued the following statement We must give the Rower empowerment and enrichment through a Quality Programme to ensure success. At the following Regatta the RN team won by 2 miles. Humiliated, the Air Force Board issued a severe letter of reprimand to the Airman Rower for his poor performance: and announced a £10million development programme for a new boat, stating that they felt they were looking into ways to fund an improved design of oar. As an interim measure they issued a tax-free bonus and leather jackets to the Rowing Team Officers ..in the hope they would stay in the team for next years race. The Army team, meanwhile, having only recently obtained funding for a boat, is trying to find out why the oars keep making divots in the grass during practice ..