Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Social Media in the year 2011

So, yesterday my old team sent an e-mail out announcing that they had successfully entered the year 2008 by creating a facebook page, but they are still falling behind without a facebook group, twitter account.

Anyways, last week I also started playing with Foursquare on my phone which allows me to "check in" to stores, restaurants, arenas etc... and also see where my friends are. That led me to ask the question, is it ok to do the drop in? By which I mean if you see a friend has posted on the twitter, the facebook, foursquare or whatever else is it ok to stop by that venue unannounced? Or is there more to the subject?

Regardless, I find it to be an interesting question that comes up in the digital age.

So, please fill out the poll below to help me understand social media in the year 2011. I'll post the results sometime next week.

Create your free online surveys with SurveyMonkey, the world's leading questionnaire tool.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

The dream is still alive, but it went all Frankenstein on me!

If you know what I'm talking about, that's great, and if you don't, well, then I suggest you try and read between the lines to figure out what this post is all about.

Anyways, I've been living the dream for a solid 20 months now, and frankly, it's starting to wear me down. The constant flux and uncertainty has lead to a lot of stress and now this week, keeping the dream alive took away bike racing for a while.

It sucks, but hey, it's the dream, and it has ups and downs. I guess for now bike racing is taking the hit. On the bright side, I can now go for 6 hour rides on Tuesdays and not feel guilty; so I got that going for me. I've still got a few irons in the fire and other projects that will hopefully kill the dream in a more permanent way. But for now, the dream has gone from being kind of awesome to more of a monster and summer hasn't even hit yet.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Grant's Tomb Crit Race Report

I'll be brief, because crit racing is not as exciting as a cross race and I didn't really do anything spectacular. But first, let it be known that the week leading up to the race I did a training camp with my GREEN LINE Velo boys in Harrisonburg VA and the night before the race I got a head cold and slept on the floor.

Right, so I woke up on the floor at 6:30, got in the car drove the 15 minutes with AJ and his buddy Craig over to the course, got registered and such.

Rolling off the line with Mr. Greg Izzo, photo: Gus Blumberg

The race got delayed and the course was cut into a tear drop as opposed to the traditional 5 turn set up, but whatever it was a bike race. I should also note, that I was terrified of racing in New York, when I last did a USAC race in Manhattan in 2008, the riders were so horribly sketchy and rude that I've since assumed that all NYC races may result in major bodily harm. But I put that out of my mind and raced anyways.

Just hanging out in the bike race with Evan Murphy (on my right, he got 2nd), photo: Andy Shen

I sat in the first 10 laps or so, tried to attack then summarily got caught and spent the next 20 minutes being pack fill recovering. Then at 5 laps to go I jumped on another move and tried to be in a breakaway because I was trying to win the bike race. That didn't last more than a lap. From then on I just sat in because I had nothing left and coughed my way in to the finish getting 40 something-ith position. When the race was over I was tired and cranky, yay bike racing.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Not your usual venue

I've always been enamored with sporting events that take place in non-traditional venues, there's something that adds to the spectacle more than when the sports you love are brought to environments you never thought possible.

While Colin had told the internet about a downtown downhill bike race yesterday, I had been thinking about it for the last few months since the NHL Winter Classic.

So below are few examples of what I think are clever and innovative ways to bring sports to the public in ways unique and exciting.

First, the annual NHL Winter Classic, an outdoor hockey game held each year by two powers of the National Hockey League, my personal favorite edition was in 2010 between the Boston Bruins and the Philadelphia Flyers.

Second in my mind also comes from the Hub, the 2002 US Open of Squash took place at Symphony Hall in Boston.

On the same note, Squash has been found in New York City's famous Grand Central Terminal on several occaisions, where a court was erected in the middle of the grand hall.

Third, the 2003 Red Bull Boston Bike Battle. I was there, it was cool. A head to head freestyle MTB competition, at Boston's City Hall Plaza.

Fourth, Biathlon auf Schalke, great sport, great idea. Take the tension of Biathlon, but instead of putting it at some small venue in the mountains, bring it to the masses. Each year this event takes a biathlon race to a football stadium in Germany, and tens of thousands of fans gaze as their favorite stars duke it out.

Fifth, any snowboard or ski event held in a downtown area. The concept is pretty simple, build a jump, put it downtown and people show up. The example below is the 2010 FIS World Cup, Freestyle Big Air in Seoul, South Korea.

Sixth, the Race of Champions, this is another event brought into a football stadium, but unlike biathlon, this is auto racing. Each year the worlds best drivers from Formula 1, the WRC, Nascar, Indy and other major series are invited to battle it out head to head.

Seventh, Fencing, it can pretty much happen anywhere. This is the 2010 World Championships, held in November, it took place inside a palace in Paris.

Eight, Tennis, nothing specific, but generally Tennis can be done in random places, like downtown Dubrovnik, in a Velodrome and on a helicopter pad, all shown below.

There are others, but frankly, I think I've given cool examples a plenty.