Can’t Barefoot for… But I Can Flip!

If you can get past Barefoot Central‘s incredible old school website layout (i.e. borderline unreadable), you can find some really good footing videos. For one of the better ones, go to this page and click on the link labeled “Best Start on Footstock History” (wording of that is kinda funny, but still watch the video.)

To think the guy came all the way from Australia and then did that. Long trip for nothing.

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Stolen Jumpers

Attention, all skiers who window shop for ski equipment on the web!!!

This is a post taken from the skifly gossip board on skifly.com (your fearless blog moderator is nohypothermia)

STOLEN JUMPERS!!!!!
Earlier this afternoon (3/26) women’s 1 and University of Iowa skier Leah Timmerman had her jumpers stolen at coralville lake in North Liberty, Iowa. The jumpers are connelly’s either 82″ or 84″ the older graphics. If you see any jumpers like these on ebay or other sites please email her at leah – timmerman @ uiowa. edu (remove spaces)

Update: Also, If you are in the Iowa City/Cedar Rapids area and happen to see a Jeep Grand Cherokee with a white “Team Daiwa” decal on the rear windshield, Please jot down the Tag # and contact Leah at the above email address. The owner of that vehicle was the lsat person seen at the Mehaffey Bridge boat ramp where the skis and equipment were stolen

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The Seal has been Broken

The Keg has been Tapped. The Water Ski Season has Begun…

Game On!!!

After scouting the Madison lakes late last week, it became evident that they weren’t going to open by this weekend. They are close, but not there yet. They weren’t going to cooperate with me breaking when I begin my ski season. My deadline was Monday the 26 and the lakes weren’t going to be open by then.

I did find out that Beaver Dam was at least a little bit open. Their show site was open, and that was about it. Just past the show site the ice was looming out there. We launched the boat and suited up. Weather was in the 60’s, sun was shining, wind was calm, but wasn’t sure on the water temp. It did still contain ice, so it wasn’t warm. Although the weather was good, fog still loomed over the ice.

Mike took the first run, braving it in a barefoot suit over a long wetsuit. Had to be cold. I took the next. I eased into the water, grabbed the rope and away we went. Here are some pictures.

Here I’m doing my best “Stay Puff Marshmellow Man” impression.

See the ice float just behind me? I’m pretending to be an ice cube right now.

Surprisingly, being in the water isn’t the really cold portion of skiing in the spring. The coldest part is when you’re up, face is wet, and you’re moving 40+ MPH. The wind chill is horrible.

Still hanging on…

Next up was John. He provided some spectacular falls that everyone wishes we had on video.




Finally, Erich from Beaver Dam took a leisurely slalom run.


And one final comment… None of us were sure what the brown stuff floating in the water was. We saw the stuff clinging to bottom and floating up from the bottom, but no idea what was. It did turn the normally white spray from the boat brown.


Mike and I took a second run each. I should have some video footage of that soon.

Here are some final shots of the lake and ice…

The water was glass calm.


For all of the pictures from the ski set, you can get them here:

2007-03-24 – Skiing – First Time on the Water in 2007
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The Guy with the Red & White Nautique

So a few days ago I’m talking to a friend of mine, Cory, who is a bartender at The Bar Next Door. He was talking with customers who happened to live near Lake Monona. I’m not sure how they got on to the subject, but I guess at some point they started talking about how they would see this guy with a red & white Nautique show up early in the spring or late in the fall and go footing. They’d see him all summer long and see him a lot. They even mentioned they saw him footing on Thanksgiving last year.

That was when Cory went, “I know that guy. That’s Wedge!”

So the home owners on Lake Monona have noticed my love of barefooting. Life’s kinda funny.

In a similar story about a year ago I was talking to a girl I had just met, it was the first week of April, and we got to talking about what we like to do for fun and I mentioned I like to go water skiing, a lot. I hadn’t even mentioned that I had already been out skiing the previous weekend. She mentioned, “You know, I saw some people skiing last Saturday afternoon… They were in a red and white boat. It looked to be pretty cold out there still.”

I replied… “That was probably me. I don’t think there are that many people out skiing yet. And yes, it was cold. But it was fun.”

In weather related news… I’ve been closely watching the lake this week to see if it’ll open up. Forecast is looking decent for this weekend. Things go right, I’ll be on the water.

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Spring

Well, according to the calenders, spring is officially here. March 20th marks the spring equinox. Yea, I should have known that earlier since I’ve been so eargerly waiting for it, but I found out when I went to play You Don’t Know Jack today. It’s a computer quiz game from the 90’s that recently resurfaced on the web. I’ll warn you now, it is addicting…

Go play it, have fun, and think warm thoughts… I need the ice to melt.

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300

300, besides being the minimum number of barefoot runs to do this year (I did 299 last year and need to beat that), it is also the name of a movie that just came out a week ago and I finally saw tonight.

The movie 300 is loosely based on the Battle of Thermopylae, and from what I’ve read on line, is somewhat truthful to the original story. That battle is actually fairly well studied and it often used as an example of the benefits of military training, use of terrain and equipment to maximize the effectiveness of an army[wiki].

I’ve seen the movie has been getting mixed reviews and wasn’t really sure how good it would be. I did know it was going to look good. The story is of the battle of 300 men defending their country from invaders. It has just enough story to give the reasons for the battles and little bit of the politicking going on back in Sparta while the battles are being waged. And I thought it did a good job. Kept me interested, the two hours flew by and I thought it was a pretty decent movie. Nothing Oscar worthy like Gladiator, but definately entertaining. If you like action movies, go watch this one on a big screen.

I saw it on the IMAX screen and it looked phenomenal. Visually, it doesn’t get much better than that. It was filmed with real people against blue-screens and then the backgrounds and effects were added latter and they did a really good job of this (they might get some Oscars for technical/special effects). The people fit in with the background nearly flawlessly. The soundtrack, taking a different approach from other recent movies featuring big historic battles backed by classical type music, has more of a rock/metal edge. One thing I did notice was that unlike Braveheart where it had blood hit the lens of the camera (very unusual for a mainstream movie), this one didn’t. Kinda unbelievable given the amount of blood shown, but even though it was all digitally superimposed, it would have been nice to have some superimposed on the camera lens.

Finally, this movie is not without controversy. Some people cite its lack of complete historical accuracy while others complain about the portrayals of the Persians. I personally prefer Warner Brothers statement about the controversy… “The film ‘300’ is a work of fiction inspired by the Frank Miller graphic novel and loosely based on an historical event. The studio developed this film purely as a fictional work with the sole purpose of entertaining audiences; it is not meant to disparage an ethnicity or culture or make any sort of political statement.” [Variety.com]

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