Sunday, March 12, 2006

Revenge, rivalry and retribution

It's only taken me six years but I've finally figured out that swim meets are not a great place to pick up guys.

I assumed that competitive swimming as an adult would be like high school all over again. But it's not. It's nothing like high school. Back then, swim meets were sexually charged events where the pool deck was packed with hard-bodied teenagers in heat. You could barely smell the chlorine through the pheromones.

Masters swim meets are much more restrained. The official motto of Masters swimming is "Fun, Fitness and Friendship," which is really just a nice way of saying "more beer bellies and fewer flat tummies."

[Note: I've always wanted to change the slogan from "Fun, Fitness and Friendship" to the more catchy "Revenge, Rivalry and Retribution." I even wrote about the idea in a newsletter article a few years ago but my proposal never really went anywhere.]

Anyway, a bunch of us from my swim club took the ferry to Victoria yesterday to compete in a meet. I decided to shake things up by swimming the 100-metre backstroke for the first time in about five years. It didn't go very well. I posted a 1:27.08.

That may sound like a respectable time but let's put it into perspective. In 1992, Mark Tewksbury won the gold medal at the Barcelona Olympics when he swam the 100-metre backstroke (it was also last time a Canadian swimmer won Olympic gold, by the way. A little swimming trivia for you, there. Who says this blog isn't informative?)

Mark Tewksbury swam the 100-metre backstroke with a time of 53.98 seconds. I swam it 33 seconds slower than he did. In a sport where winners and losers are separated by hundredths of a second, 33 seconds is an eternity.

For those of you (hi, mom) who are actually interested in these things, I've posted the rest of my results from yesterday's meet below:

- 50-metre butterfly: 36.40 (1st place)
- 50-metre freestyle: 31.96 (3rd place)
- 100-metre backstroke: 1:27.08 (3rd place)
- 400-metre freestyle: 5:41.07 (4th place)

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