Monday, 7 November 2011

4s head + memes

So yes, the weekend = 4HORR. Woo!

So all of CUW trekked down to London to have a play on the Tideway. This meant staying at our President's house, who's mother is a meat trader. I thought this was amazing and was expecting to find entire pigs in the fridge. I did get a little carried away when a beautiful ham came out and had to be restrained.

Yes. The memes begin here.

It's always a bit weird coming from either the Cam (small, narrow and windy and full of boats) or the Ouse (long, straight and completely devoid of other crews) to a fucking huge river full of boats and feeling about a mile wide. And with stream (what is this "stream" you speak of?) and tides and that (the sea? in a river?) and FUCKING MASSIVE BUOYS AND BRIDGES AND RAW SEWAGE.

Also, doors apparently, just floating down the river.

We also saw a tupperware full of what looked like mouldy chilli con carne floating past us as we marshalled. What an alien place the Tideway is.

One of the key lessons learnt this weekend is not to be an IM2 W4+ because then you'll have a number of the order of 400 (or 452) and will be sitting round for a badgering long time at the start. A small mercy was that it wasn't raining because a good 2 hours sat in a downpour before the start would be very much not fun.

I should also at this point mention a rather surreal conversation between our boat and a marshall:

Yes, I owed a mug to one of the marshalls. Very odd. He was also the only non-shouty marshall, going instead for a mix of politeness and sarcasm which made a difference from "452 MOVVVVVVVVVEEEEEEEE IIIIITTTTTTTTTTT".

So we start the race with a general aim of OVERTAKING EVERY FUCKING BOAT ON THE RIVER. I mean, then we would win right?

However, the race itself proved to be a complete fucking disaster. Here is the sequence of events:

We hear a lot of "Nottingham! Move over!" type chat coming over the cox box coming out of Barnes Bridge. Uh oh.

Then the call to row light. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

We row light but still move up on yet another crew.

We are then completely stuck between 3 crews and have to easy. To say there was rage at this point is a bit of an understatement.

We were supposed to be overtaking the slower crews, not crashing into them! GOD FUCKING DAMMIT.

Since this was near Barnes we were therefore also near photographers.

Photo credit: Matt Byrne. Awesome photo! (Apart from the subject, obv.)
And then the natural follow up:

"RAGE". Izzi winning the best gesticulation award. If this photo came with sound, you would hear ONLY SWEARING.
We then (eventually) got on with the rest of our race. Ended up third in our category, 15s off the winners FUCKING HELL RAGE. Very, very annoying, given that when we were moving it felt pretty fucking sweet.



In other news, I got a very nice email from a track cyclist who was reading the back issues of my blog (the post about cereal specifically) and wanted to share his winter training diet.

Yes that is whey protein + budget cereal. I respect that, especially given how fucking disgusting that must have been (barf). He also explained this weird hidden message that used to be on Kelloggs bran flakes:

(Chris Hoy has a niece called Anna, fairly unsurprisingly). Mystery solved! Pleasing!

I also discovered deadmau5 this week thanks to my my housemate John. This has lead to some SERIOUS Trance consumption this week...

For those of you not initated, THIS is deadmau5 (pronounced "deadmouse"). You need to put some headphones in and turn up the volume VERY LOUD. This is important.

Or, even better, this:

OMFG WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWWWWW. I went to a very strange place listening to this stuff while doing maths.

After a while of this really very loud Trance my brain started going to weird places and I started imagining that I was in a very long room with very large speakers at the end and with very long blackboards that I was doing maths on. 

It turned out to be a very strange, very productive day of maths which left me mentally wrecked for a good couple of days afterwards.... Odd. Very odd. Christ knows what would happen if I ever took hallucinogenic drugs if this is what happens when I listen to loud repetitive music FFS.

John and I were also listening to it very loud on the sound system thingy at home and being general deadmau5 fanboys:

Then our housemate Harriet walked in, very not impressed:

(She did also say when she saw I had imbedded some videos in this blog post "Oh god, that's not the death music is it?" and gave me a disapproving look. I think this proves she has no taste :D)

At this point, I just put headphones in and turned up the volume. Wooooooooooooooo!


P.S. Gordon in love:


  1. That Deadmau5 was very useful for getting me out of a post-weights funk, good choices

  2. The Tideway is fun- you haven't mentioned the shifting sandbanks, 2-to-3-foot standing waves under bridges, huge motor-yachts ignoring the speed limit, and various other bonuses to rowing on a real river.

  3. This post is win because it contains SMP

  4. Thank you for including a drawing of me... and I take back the comment in your e-mail that your cox should have gone round now you've told the whole story - it's a wide river but not that wide.
    Good news on the mug - it should only pass through three more people's hands before it finally reaches me..
    PS Awesome giant duck picture.

  5. Very bad luck with the race but, hey, it's only rowing...

  6. I've recently found your blog and its been keeping me entertained inbetween a levels and winter training. This weekend I coxed a WIM2 4+ at the fours head and I believe that according to your diagram was coxing 'slower boat #3' , even though I'm sorry about your crash and it meant we had to move out of the stream I can't belive it was you in the cambridge boat! I find this very exciting!!!! Sorry if I sound like a stalker I just really love your blog :) serena

  7. Thanks for the photo credit. Sorry it's not quite in focus. :-(

    I do like the gesturing in the "after" shot

    If I'd known you owed sjb92 a mug back when I collected mine, I could have done delivery for you.

  8. perfectly encapsulates the head racing experience on the tideway.

  9. We ended up 4th in WIM2. We got kinda stuck trying to pass the 3 boats about 500 metres off the start. Possibly the same boats??? Loving the gesture from stroke seat btw... :)

  10. Deadmau5 - Strobe

  11. @sjb92: No worries, enjoy your mug of minty joy! :D
    @Ormo Blog: IT'S ONLY ROWING!?!?!?!? *does not compute*
    @Serana: No offence intended, sorry for slightly screwing your race too... :-/ I suppose rowing world = small world :-)
    @Rosti: SMP is now known as "Downing", FYI.
    @Anonymous 13:01: SADTIMES :-( You feel my rage.
    @Anonymous 16:01: INDEED :-) :-) :-) :-) Now listening to the Tron soundtrack :-)

  12. So you went all the way to the Tideway to crash into City of Cambridge? Could have stayed at home for that...

    I saw the photo up on the messageboards and thought, "hmm, there'll be an entertaining blog post imminently..." and there was. Yay!

  13. Yay for Gordon being in love, thought he might like it. :-) Although I may now have created a duck love triangle. That or the infinite duck project...
    (courtesy of housemate for the actual duck and photo)

  14. trance to slow for productivity. gentle introduction to hardstyle:

    never go back.

  15. Not doing the Scullers Head then? :D

    Rage faces are so last year though ;)