May 19, 2006


Originally sent on 3/21/06:

First off I need to apologize for the tardiness of this email and the clusterfuck that was Hammerfest Part III. It seemed to turn out ok, but for those who don't know, the Nazareth pool was apparently CLOSED on Sunday, unbeknownst to me and unbeknownst to the lady that I called in the swim office last Tuesday to make sure the pool was still open. I apologize for the last minute change in venue and those that couldn't make the readjusted swim. (Sorry Irah…) Things have been a little harried here and I'm sorry this email is a day late as well. I forgot to bring the list of times to work yesterday that I took down at the award ceremony. I almost feel like the race director who doesn't post the results and everyone is waiting on those results to see how they did. But wait no more, here it is…

Well for me Hammerfest III started out on a sour note with me trying to explain to a Super trooper why I was going 75 in a 55 mph zone and why I exited the expressway as soon as I saw him pull off the shoulder and drive after me. ("Meow, I swear officer, I'm not too familiar with this area (meow) and I was just getting off the expressway to look at my map to find Nazareth College…meow") He told me he thought I was trying to give him the slip. Well, maybe I was, but my four banger Honda wasn't equipped to out run a V8 police car…

Anyway, I felt like an ass showing up to the basement of Nazareth after telling everyone to get there on time at 3pm. And the icing on the cake was that the pool was closed. So we all put our heads together and came up with Webster Aquatic center to complete our swim. We piled into a few choice cars and I led the caravan (right at the speed limit, not above or below) to Webster to go swimming. There were a few near misses as a large Toyota truck driven by a swimmer (who will remain nameless) shot across 2-3 lanes of traffic and in front of another vehicle to hit the 590 exit to follow the caravan. I saw the whole thing in the rearview and even though it was backwards, it was amazingly impressive that the truck is still in one piece…

Webster is a SCY (short course yards pool) and Naz is a SCM pool (short course meters) so we knew the times were going to be faster at Webster. The lifeguards were nice enough there to let us all swim in separate lanes in the other pool. ("Let's hear it for the lifeguards!!!" - Chad) and Tim Howland was nice enough to point out my camel toe in the Fast skin full body Speedo suit that Erin Varley let me borrow. Why Tim was looking at my crotch, I have no idea, only he knows. I don't want to quote him on what he said since his legal department had a quick retort after the "bike arm candy" quote was misspoken in the last email, but it was something to the effect of, "Wow Travis your package is HUGE" No wait, that was Sam who said that. Tim said something to the effect of, "I never knew a dude could have camel toe until I saw you in that…" Gross Tim, I'm speechless, just gross.

Heat one consisted of John Hunter, Phil VP, me, Tim Howland, Ryan O'Dell, and Chad Powley. We were pressed for time so there was no warm up, just straight in the pool for the Hammerfest. After jumping in, I don't think I'll ever have children again as that fast skin suit was just a tad too small (as it was a women's suit) and didn't have the roomier section between the legs that men need. The suit shrunk like 3 sizes and I was speaking in soprano for the rest of the swim. Anyway, watches were set, gun went off and the race was on.

Most were tired from the exploits of the weekend (Giro's in Buffalo and Rochester, long runs, etc..) but I was able to defend the trifecta of January, February and March wins at Hammerfest with a 21:03 in the pool for the 1,650 yard race. John was close behind in 23:38 and third place for the heat was Chad Powley in 24:37. (the complete listing of times will follow below)
An impressive swim by Ryan O'Dell who finished the swim in drag shorts with a time of 30:05 and didn't even get the honors of the coveted tin foil and wire coat hanger trophy. (which is a good thing) The next heat was supposed to be all of the women, but since we were short on counters and time, we needed to make do. Kelly, Heather, Alexis and Sam started together and Erin was 2 minutes behind them. For the women, Erin came out victorious with a time of 24:30 (good enough for third place overall) and Sam was second in the womens heat with a 27:04. Rounding out the podium and finishing JUST before the lifeguards kicked us out was Alexis in 29:05. Good job to everyone who swam.

Official final times for Hammerfest III
1. 21:03 - Travis Earley
2. 23:38 - John Hunter
3. 24:30 - Erin Varley
4. 24:37 - Chad Powley
5. 25:27 - Phil VanPeursem
6. 27:04 - Sam Powley
7. 28:30 - Kelly Boerschlein
8. 29:05 - Alexis Spilman
9. 30:05 - Ryan O'Dell
10. 32:30 - Tim Howland
11. 35:?? - Heather McLendon

The awards followed shortly afterwards at my apartment and once again, we out did ourselves on food and drink. There were 2 cakes (thank you Kelly and Greg), an apple pie (thanks Sam), chicken legs (thanks Rachel), cheese, crackers, Cool ranch Doritos (don't you wish you came to the party now Chad?), chocolate Easter eggs, a smoked meat log (courtesy of John), chex mix, and blue corn tortilla chips with salsa con queso at a certain swimmers request. (hope it was good Sam) There was Killians (as it was St. Patty's day weekend), Sam light, G+T's and juices galore. A huge thank you to everyone who brought food and drink. Maybe next month we will rival the spread at the Run for Hospice! :)

There was a special treat this month with each swimmer getting a sweet Hammerfest bumper sticker (and if any of you were too cool to show up to the awards Darren and Alexis I'll give you guys stickers whenever I see you again.) There were also AWESOME door prizes again. 6 total actually thanks to Tim and some of the Hammerfest "sponsors". First off was a nice New Balance lanyard to Phil, second was the "mystery bag" which went to John full of power gels, power bars and e caps and stuff, third was a nice dry fit New Balance t shirt to Sam, fourth was a pair of Yankz! to Erin and last but not least, in the style of muddy sneaker, a certificate for entry into Hammerfest IV went out to Ryan (race director pays your entry fee). Good times. Everyone left with something and a lot of food in their stomachs. Good times. And somehow Tim made it on the email again with a comment to the effect of "I just licked all of your knobs…" (For those of you who weren't there, don't you wish you were there so you would have gotten the context of that??)

Well that seems to be all for this installment of the rundown of Hammerfest. Someone left a blue knit winter hat and a sweet pair of EMS gloves at my place after the award ceremony and if no one claims them, they are going to be raffled off as a door prize next month. Heather, you get the coveted tin foil and wire coat hanger trophy, so when I see you next, I'll pass it along. Hammerfest four is scheduled for 4/29/06 which allows people to hit the Daks, go to Boston and STILL come to the most amazing swim in Rochester!!! The top ten list will be updated for yards and meters (there will be separate lists for each pool) as we don't want to have to add 52.5 seconds on each persons time. Because we all know there is SO much more to do with those precious seconds! :)

Take care all, thanks for pulling together and making H3 a success and I will be sending out more updates as Hammerfest 4 draws nearer. Good luck in all you do and see you in the pool. Cheers.


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