On politics and sport

September 15, 1999 (www.slowtwitch.com)

Bill Clinton and Chinese President Jiang Zemin were in our little hamlet of Christchurch, New Zealand today.  The two of them in the same place doesn't happen every day. The two most powerful men in the world according to those who know a bit about nuclear weapons and market economies. 

Y
et they couldn't be more different from each other.  Clinton is the guy the tabloid-reading, stargazing New Zealand public wanted to see.  And that says a lot about people. They were falling over each other to see Clinton and virtually ignored Zemin.  They wanted to see the glorified real human dude with a bitch of a wife.  The kind of dude who tickles young fat chicks with his big cigar in the oval office.  A guy who bombs the shit out of Iraq.  Can you imagine Zemin doing this kind shit? 

But I digress.........What I'm getting to here is that most people want a bit of a break from what they perceive as a pretty ordinary and boring existence.  That's what the tabloids are, and they sell by the billions.  But we're not tabloid readers, are we?  Our thrill seeking doesn't end there does it?  We go out and make our own adventure (as Ray Browning's show "Trailside" so aptly puts it.  Have you seen that show?  Do. It's worth your time).   And that's why we do events that challenge us and give us a reason to get up early and pound the shit out of ourselves. We take on real challenges and extend our small boundaries.

And that's the reason I'm so confounded by the ITU super jerks who only stop long enough from their gallavanting around first class from money sucked out of our sport to standardize our challenges and pre-package them for TV.  This kinda shit gets me down.  The latest bureaucratic bungling bullshit they are laying on us is to rule out innovative bikes from ITU events.  They want to shut down the creativity and genius that sets us apart.  All bikes the same.  Triangles only.  Totally against why we made a new sport for ourselves -- to do something different.  To be different.  And what's this "Olympic Distance"  thing about? All courses the same.  And drafting. They're cocksuckers--STD carrying, hairy, crusty maggots who suck cocks. More on them later.

Anyway, I went up to the top of the South Island with a group of friends for a running event over the Abel Tasman trail on September fourth.  Thirty-seven kilometers of unspoiled paradise.  We did it because a friend wanted to do it for his fortieth birthday.  Well, he got injured and couldn't do it but we had all trained (a bit) and had made all the plans. We had got some time off work (yes, some of us do work a bit) and arranged baby-sitters, and so we drove on up there and had a ball.  Great New Zealand wines and I even had a little Hennessy cognac before and after.  One of the finer things in life without a doubt when you're soothing a throat that's a bit dry from a tough run and a little of our biggest cash crop.  I shared it with friends, too. Such a simple concept, eh?  How and why do we get sidetracked from that kind of challenging, yet blissful, experience?

From time to time I try to recall those times when I wasn't sidetracked from why I started running and doing triathlons in the first place.  If my Alzheimer's allows me a glimpse of those times, I'd like to share them because every now and then you might be looking for an opportunity to mix a little folly in your plans and need a little spark.  It won't be rocket science or Shakespeare I can assure you.  For example, did you know I won the "World's Toughest Triathlon" on a race fuel mixture of a slab of my mother's best chocolate walnut fudge, two water bottles filled with equal parts espresso and Bailey's Irish Cream, and a dozen ibuprofen?