Hi there, welcome to my blog.

What's this all about? Well, that's a question I'm probably not even qualified to answer. I guess it started off because I had nothing better to do, but turns out that I kind of like it. So when I'm not working for The Man I like to take pictures, make videos and write about whatever else might seem like a good idea at the time.

From dragon boating to mountain biking, to road trips and travels overseas - this is me trying to enjoy life. Clock out at 5, eat, drink and don't forget to smile a lot.

Monday, July 25

Got that Montreal dragon boat swag.

Swordfish did it - Intermediate B Division Champs. That's what's up.

This was my first time at the MTL Festival and let me tell you that you're basically running on smoked meat and bagels fumes the entire weekend. Between the long drives, early races and people staying up far too late, sleep is a real luxury out there (just like showers).

It's alright though because turns out that cocaine is one hell of a drug once you get on the boat and the adrenaline kicks in, the game is most definitely ON.

While MTL is not as big as TIDBRF it was still an international festival after all and there were apparently 200+ teams participating, so it was still pretty big. The first day was all qualifiers and the second day all finals. So on day 2 there's no warming up with a last heat, just embrace that hangover flavor in your mouth and go for it.

If you don't know how it works, during the day 1 prelims teams are placed into classes (Recreational, Intermediate and Premier) and divisions (A, B...G) based on the times they throw down. So unless a team sandbags it to get placed in a lower division to purposely rape the medal race, if all goes according to plan then you should be facing other teams with similar times. From the looks of it the seeding went well.

Since there were so many teams and races for the day, the schedule also started very early. Real early. Too early for our adoring fans apparently.

The venue was actually the Olympic Basin @ Parc Jean-Drapeau, which was pretty official like and cool to race in (not that other regattas aren't...but it was a pretty nice course). So unless making girls feel awkward at the bar becomes an official sport, then this is as close as I'll get to doing respectably well at a legitimately organized competition.

Anyway, when it comes down to it you only actually race 4 times for the entire weekend. It doesn't sound like much but that's 4 all out races to get your swoll on. Combine that with being out in the sun all day and it really beats you up. If you do survive though, you can also enjoy the rewards of making it out there (I guess).

Enter Montreal at night night and it turns out a lot of teams go out despite the fact that you could be racing at 7am... Well all the cool teams that matter anyway...

Remember when I was talking about not knowing how "competitive" things would actually be when we got there? Well if the competition also included the team invading a club, getting bottles and having fun then we won that as well.

Anyway, Sunday was another early morning. Fortunately, like I said, cocaine is one hell of a drug adrenaline really helps out the situation (and drinking tons of water). I actually felt pretty good after the warm up and marshaling so I was ready to throw it down.

They also had some pretty noob moves ridiculous issues in the A Intermediate Final, which was right before us. They marshaled 7 boats (only 6 in a race btw) and had 4 start gun misfires, so they had to reset 5 times. WTF? As a result we we had some more time to recover rest up in the marshaling area before boarding the boat.

As the day went on there was actually a pretty decent size crowd forming and they were actually cheering during the races, imagine that. While it ain't exactly the World Cup it definitely adds to the atmosphere when there is any sort of encouragement being yelled out.

I'm not going to lie though, it's pretty damn loud on the water and you're pretty zoned in. So except for the air horns and vuvuzelas I couldn't really hear my babies' mamas calling out my name.

Remember kids, just follow the people in front of you and everything will be alright. Try to hit when they hit and stay smooth. Don't pull that looking out of the boat cheese because we all know how that goes...

We actually won our final by only 0.05 seconds. Still worth gold though. We also got Bronze in the 200m final but I'll go ahead and admit that the start was pretty messed up and we might have struggled to hold it together after that.

Here's a pic from the event photographer.

Anyhow, it was a great weekend and zombie mode has been fully engaged today. For all the haters out there, this is what Victory looks like.