So I think I was at the Head of the Charles this weekend. But honestly it’s hard to say, because this year was so much different than any other year that I’ve been to HOCR. First off: I saw almost no rowing whatsoever. Rowing gear, rowers, and rowing shells (being walked along the walkway) but very little actual rowing. Reason being: I was on a mission.
The primary goal of this weekend was to debut and sell the crap out of our 2012 Power and Grace Calendars. And, well, that’s what we did. There wasn’t a single minute that we weren’t selling a calendar, signing it, snapping photos, chatting with fans and supporters or heckling passersby to come and get some Power and Grace. Ellen, Natalie and I worked open to close both days at the Charles in a flurry of Sharpies, camera phones and smiles.
Can I just say: it was awesome.
I met so many cool, crazy, enthusiastic, sweet and genuine people this weekend, it blew me away. I honestly cannot believe how lucky I am to be a part of the best sporting community on the planet. Rowers and coxswains of all levels and abilities, ages, boat classes and genders from all over the world came and introduced themselves–all with huge smiles and such warm and inspiring energy. Thank you to everyone who took the time to come see us while we were peddling calendars or signing autographs, it was so great to meet you all and put faces to Twitter handles or blog comments! Meeting people who read my blog or follow what I’m up to on Twitter really does mean so much to me–I am glad to continue to share the journey with you guys!
Some of the social highlights:
- Super fan awards go to: Hobart men’s crew (especially Reid), Wellesley women’s crew, and Cape Cod Crew. You guys rocked!
- Did anyone else meet the visiting Kiwi sculler from West End, or was he just a dream I had?
- Geoff: you better call me! (in May)
- Ryan: nice eyes!
- Not surprising: of all the comments and thumbs up I got on this year’s List, the only person who was repeatedly mentioned by name (read: number) was… you guessed it: #3. Rares, I think you may be in the wrong industry.
- Trevor (the List 2016): let’s see a pic of you in your #21 shirt!
- During the autograph session, Ali sold her Power and Grace t-shirt off her back. A serious manoeuver since it wasn’t exactly warm outside.
- As the weekend wore on, we became less and less shameless about slinging calendars anywhere, any time. This was extended to include the paid parking area across from the regatta course. We approached some young men in a tan SUV while they were waiting in the traffic queue to ask them if they wanted a calendar, and they gave us a lot of attitude and claimed they had no money, quite skeptical that we were actual National Team athletes. We traded jokes but still were turned down in the end. Four hours later as we were trekking back to our car in the lot, we met the same group leaving the parking lot in the same car. They flagged us down and asked if we had any calendars, even though they still had no money to give us. We weren’t very impressed with their flippancy, but got some satisfaction out of watching their eyes bug out when they saw the USA crest on Natalie’s jacket and when I produced a world championship medal from my bag. CRI, I suggest you educate your junior male rowers and/or send them to charm school!
I have to say thank you to WinTech and King racing for hosting us and allowing us to peddle calendars outside your tent. Without your help I know we would not have had such a successful and fun weekend. Special thanks to Sean Wolf for his help in arranging everything.
Also thank you to the National Rowing Foundation for hosting another lovely reunion and allowing us to flash Power and Grace around the party as well. It was a hit. And it was really amazing to meet so many of the 1980 Team who were present. As well as Dominic Siertele who somehow snuck in (apparently security isn’t real tight at NRF functions, allowing Canadian riffraff to crash the party).
So, another memorable HOCR in the books. No racing, and no heckling/yelling love devotionals from the bridge to male scullers in the Champ 1X and 2X events… but still not a bad weekend.
Thanks again to everyone who supported us by buying a calendar!
Long Live the Dream,