Tuesday, February 22, 2011

16. Learn how to freestyle swim well enough to do at least 4 laps in the pool

This was written back on Tuesday and finished today.  I didn't feel like going through and changing the tenses.

Today was a wonderful day to swim. It is a good feeling to be swimming inside and look out the windows to see it snowing outside. I'd rather it be nice and warm outside, but that time will come.  Until then, we had fun. Melissa wrote today about our family's trip to the pool.
During our trip the kids had a lot of nervous excitement.  While they enjoyed the idea that they were "swimming," they never let Melissa and me get too far away from them.  Thus, not too much freedom to do anything other than just be close to the kids.  Not a complaint! Just a comment.
I was able to go to the pool about an hour and a half before the family arrived to try to get some lap swimming in before they came.  My goal is to learn to freestyle swim so it looks as though I am coordinated in the pool.  Side strokes are alright, but almost anyone can do that.  I want to be able to efficiently get through the water.  In my hour swimming I swam about 50 lengths of the pool.  I had a couple of times where I was working on my breathing and stroke for the freestyle, but my endurance isn't built up to the level it needs to be. 
I did get the confidence to get me back there.  I definitely boosted my self confidence in knowing that it is something I think I can accomplish in the next few months (I have under 3 months left until my 1001 days is up!).

Friday, February 11, 2011

This is Jeopardy

I am a fan of Jeopardy!  Thanks to TIVO, I watch it every day.  In college we used to have a few guys get together in the afternoons to watch and "compete" against each other.  One year I even had a friend tape (yes tape) the tournament of champions for me as I was going to be off selling books in Atlanta during the tournament. I remember Eddie Timanus (a blind sports writer for USA Today) being an incredible player and emphatically trying to click in on every single answer.  He was my favorite.  How can you not root for a blind guy?  Sadly, he didn't make the finals that year as he wagered too much on a Daily Double in the second round.  This led to a tournament victory for Jeremy, a writer from California.  I write this to prove that I am a nerd fan.

As time has gone on I have started to feel that I have a fairly good chance at answering a lot of the questions correctly each show.  I used to marvel at watching Jeopardy with my dad as a kid because he knew a lot of the answers. I think if they had teams for the show, he would be one my top picks to team up with.

Just this past week Jeopardy opened up for auditions online.  This is the first time they have done it in a couple of years so I jumped at the chance.  I know I still have a long way to go before I truly consider myself to have a legitimate chance of qualifying to be on the show, but I had to see where I stood.  I actually considered putting this on my next list (Try out for Jeopardy), but they only open up for new candidates on sporadic schedules so I couldn't count on it working into my time frame.

The verdict: I did alright. I enjoyed it! The test is online and is a collection of 50 questions. For each question you were given 15 seconds to read the category, the question and to type in your answer (spelling doesn't count).  It was a frantic 12 minutes trying to figure out just how unprepared I was.
I would say I am pretty confident that I got 20 right and 20 wrong, with the remaining 10 going either way. Anything related to literacy is my downfall.  I do not know classics too well.  If a question is every about poetry I usually say Emily Dickenson and hope it is right.  That is an area I am not good at, and probably never will.

Unfortunately, I will never know how I did.  They don't reveal your score. Ever.  You just have to wait for a letter or a call telling you that you have made it to the next round.  This letter or call can take up to two years.
I am not sitting waiting by the phone.  I don't expect a call back, but at least I can say I have given it a chance.  This won't be my last.