Best of 2007 - a year in review

Before I get into what I'm planning for 2008, I thought I'd review 2007.

People

It was a crazy year for me, my divorce was finalized, fortunately things seem to have worked out for Wendy, hopefully Dave will be better for her than I was. I split with Kris, unlike my marriage break-up which I saw coming and which ran in slow motion train wreck for 3-years, I just decided I was done with Kris. That was hurtful and unfair, I'm sorry Kris.

On the other hand I met Cassidy, I'll never understand what she see's in me, but I'm delighted she see's enough to put up with my eccentricity, my foibles and for 2008, my training(more to come!).

Triathlon

In triathlon terms, 2007 was my quietest year, almost in 8-years. I did fewer events and less training than since my first year in the sport in 1999. I made a few mistakes at events in 2007, my A-race, the Woodlands Triathlon 101 was canceled and in the scramble to redesign my season I went from a race which my objective was just to finish in a reasonable time, to one where my objective was to place, silly mistake and I paid for it.

I also messed up my entries in 2007, entering in the Clydesdale category for St Anthonys in St Petersburg and placing; I should have entered Clydesdale for the Cactus Challenge, or at least read the rules. If I'd have raced in the Clydesdales I would have again placed, and if I'd been in my USAT age group, I'd have also placed, but since they were not using USAT age groups, I was out in 5th.

I also had lots of technical problems in 2007. There was the chain jump on my training bike on the Austin Tri Cyclist Saturday ride that ended up costing me circa $275 for new parts, then there were the endless problems with sweat/salt on brake cables. Then there was putting my shoes on the wrong way around at the couples triathlon, not major, but summed up my casual, or to busy to do-it properly attitude for 2007.

I'd say though that my favorite events were:

Star Flight 5k - just off injury I was pretty close to a PB/PR for 5k over an accurate course distance. I'm going to do this one again in 2008.

Maderia Beach Triathlon - Although I only came 13th out of 36 in the 50-54 age group, the race I had with local event organiser Fred Rzymek was great fun, racing alongside fellow Brit and former Triathlon World Champion Spencer Smith was great fun. Also, its in one of the hotbeds for older age group racing in the US. Lots of fit, financed early retirees hang out n that part of the world.

Swimming - I didn't have a single great swim event, mostly 'cause I only did one and that was a disappointment, both in time, course and after the event. Although any event where you can compete alongside Desiree Ficker in a field of only some 30-people has to be memorable. For swimming though it has to be Barton Spings - a true oasis.

Cycling - I didn't do a single cycling event in 2007 if you discount the Sierra to the Sea bike tour. Something I must rectify in 2008. Best ride of the year was no doubt with triathletebigo  - I got up to 56MPH coming down 620 from 2222.

Music

despite moving to Austin in 2006, you can take the man out of the disco/club scene, but you can't take the disco/club scene out of the man. For "real" music, the brightest discovery of the year was Barry Ingle. Barry works locally, but was great as the last act in the Cafe Caffeine ATX event that ran in parallel with South by South West. Also, I saw Maneja Beto twice, some good acts at Austin City Limits, but Barry, Nelson and Maneja Beto were the best live acts of 2007 and at opposite ends of the musical spectrum. My favorite tracks were still club based though:
  1. Ten Miles - Infernal - like all good music and lyrics, there are more sub-topics/meanings to make it pointless to even start to explain. If you don't do "disco" try the accoustic version.
  2. AME - Rej - If only I could find a club here in Austin that played music like this... how to loose your mind to sound. Theres a good video on youtube of a AME remix being played at Pacha in St Pete, Russia, which makes me think I should have gone to Pacha in Barcelona last w/e. Sigh... always one regret!
  3. Baby, When the light - David Guettera - any video which features women in wetsuits and cowboy hats can't be all that bad, plus David did the music for the Victoria's Secret fashion show, now thats a connection!
Places

Didn't travel much in 2007, there was the Sierra to the Sea bike tour, the wine country tour, and just last week the trip to Barcelona. Barcelona was a stand-out. Without a doubt the best w/e break I've taken in years and years. We went to Tablao Flamenco Cordobes on Las Ramblas, it was fantastic. The energy of the dance, the acoustic guitars etc. were spot on and full of passion. This is a video I uploaded, it wasn't as dark as it looks on the video!
  • Current Location: Austin, Texas
  • Current Music: Pioneer - The Album - Volume 8(still)
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Jeeeeeesus. Yes, I so wish there was real music in Austin... I shudder to even think about what was playing at the clubs in SF while I was there, but of course since Laura isn't into that at all, I didn't get to go... A couple of times I asked to take her to Ruby Skye but she just scoffed. I think scoffing is pretty much the only response I got actually... Next visit to that area will certainly involve clubs and cycling...

I'd say my best musical find of '07 has been Sigur Ros with Gabriel & Dresden being a close second...
I suspect even you are getting too old for real clubs, don't forget disco dies when you are 29, fact. My eldest is 25, she was gutted when Gatecrasher burned down in Sheffield last year, having "grown-up" there.

There must be somewhere the real kids go? I went to a couple of "gigs" up on the roof at factory people on South Congress, but then it closed.

For online music, there are some great tracks and playlists on imeem.com - I understand the Laura thing, been there.
I heard Dave Seaman is on at the Sky Lounge on Congress on Feb 1st... Ella says it might be worth going....