"What are you, nuts?" you ask. I inquired the same. Several times. But I'd been invited to join the crew of Brutus, a well-equipped and -sailed J/120 entered in the Ida Lewis Yacht Club's Distance Race. And suspecting that a last-minute mutiny wouldn't be treated lightly, I concluded that if the race was on, I had no choice but to be there for Friday's 3 p.m. start. The course was to be a 150-mile ramble that would take us from Newport, Rhode Island, to a buoy off Montauk, New York, then to another mark near Martha's Vineyard before dragging us back by Block Island and home to Newport. In the Wednesday-afternoon update, forecasters predicted that gale- to storm-force winds could lash the outer waters, especially near Cape Cod, by Saturday evening and seas would grow impressively over just about the entire period we could expect to be at sea. Two others in our office would also be out on boats for the race, and it occurred to at least a couple of us that a whole lot could go wrong, all for the sake of being able to say, "Been there, done that."