After 2 months off post Maui, and barely 6 weeks of training in my legs, the appeal of a race in the Philippines had obviously a lot more to do with the incentive of a tropical holiday than the buzz of toeing the line unfit next to the likes of Craig Alexander or Luke McKenzie. The plan was to spend 10 days or so in paradise (the beautiful island of Palawan that is) with my babe, before flying back to Manila and head out to Subic Bay. + more
I have now the pleasure and pride to have a mix featured on the classy Krossfingers blog/website. In very good company here!
It did take me a bit longer than usual to do this mix, the idea was to play mostly old records and surprise the blog’s head honchos Sasha Tessio and Artem Ikra. Not an easy feat when you know the scale of these guys’ knowledge! This meant I had to think about this one quite a bit, dig out deeper than usual, and still try to come up with something that would represent me. Labour of love all the way, and I must say I am rather happy with the result! + more
And what a year it was!
Music, whether listening to, dancing to, digging and filing records has once again been my drug of choice, keeping me sane and smiling always. Countless hours were spent week in week out socialising, dancing, listening, debating, upgrading audio, etc from the natural hub that has become Brilliant Corners, which has now completed its first year in style -and we’re all ready to keep growing and push things forward. Too many great memories in that space to mention, but on a personal note playing alongside Floating Points back in March was a definite highlight (what a master!), as well as a private after party post Journey Through the Light back in June, house party style…the Klipschorns were literally singing that night. The man Tako Reyenga (of Red Light Records / Music From Memory, more below) also played the best DJ set I’ve heard all year. Inspiring!
Our Beauty & the Beat parties have kept on growing and evolving, selling out every time and culminating with a 17 hour (!) NYE/NYD marathon to ‘celebrate’ the closure of our home for the last 5 years, the New Empowering Church. Unforgettable. Those moments are what I live for, simple. With the best crowd around and such a great momentum, we will hopefully find a new suitable venue soon, at least before our 10 years anniversary in June (!). + more
Mon 1er Charlie c’était un cadeau de mon papa quand j’avais 16 ans (après ou avant il y a eu les bouquins de Cavanna, je sais plus). Depuis plus de 20 ans je suis abonné fidèle, la seule année où non c’était quand j’étais aux States, mais même là ma maman m’en envoyait des exemplaires de temps à autres. Charlie c’est ma famille quoi. Val, Font, Siné, Cabu, Wolinski, Charb, Oncle Bernard, Honoré, Polac, Tignous, Riss, Renaud un temps, Caroline Fourest, Philippe Lançon et Catherine plus récemment…ce sont tous mes oncles et mes tantes. Je ne serais pas qui je suis aujourd’hui sans la lecture hebdomadaire et passionnée du journal depuis 2 décennies. Tous ces monuments de culture ont façonné ma façon de penser, ma façon d’être finalement. Ce ne sont pas des grands optimistes, loin de là, mais ils aim(ai)ent la vie. + more
I may have done only one xterra this year (not very successful at that, see my report on xterra Italy) but thanks to some AA flight vouchers I’ve known since February that come October I’d be back in Maui to give this race a (possibly last) shot. My last attempt was in 2011 when I took a wrong turn on the bike and went off course, never to reappear…Someone’s got some unfinished business you see. Admittedly the appeal of a return to Kauai and especially to the majestic Kalalau trail has helped equally to keep my motivation levels pretty (very) high.
This time the plan was to stay a week on Maui, to be followed by a week on Kauai straight after the race. I aimed to arrive on race day as relaxed as I could without getting caught up into some unnecessary pressure, and this involved not staying or hanging out with my fellow triathletes. I chose instead to be all cozy with my girlfriend and acclimatise nicely to the tropics, while showing her some of the best spots of the island along the way. Easy. + more
Last minute decision for me to take part in this 1/2 iron distance race, part of the Hever Castle triathlon festival in Kent (2 days of multiples events and 7000 triathletes overall!). I noticed a decent prize money, checked the weather forecast and blagged a free entry from Speedo (thanks Dan!) – all clear!
No ad hoc preparation, certainly no tapering, no course recce, see-what-happens sort of thing. Lots of beetroot juice intake in the few days and morning before, hoping for the best. + more
After my DNS @ IM Nice in June, this was a race I wanted to do well at, an A race so to speak. Obviously the training hadn’t been regular these last 4 months with barely any swimming and running due to broken bones and other injuries, but I did manage to get on the start line with only a couple of cracked ribs to worry about, as well as a customary dodgy -but improving- Achilles. First victory.
I arrived in Japan 10 days before the race in order to acclimatise nicely. Couple days in Tokyo first, enough to catch up with my friends Nao and Mika, and also for a DJ gig at Grassroots, one of my favorite venues in Koenji. Nice to see some familiar faces there as well as a bunch of new followers. I had a ball and didn’t get to bed before 8am. Lots of rum and ginger and cigarettes too. Perfect IM prep! + more
“It’s Sun Ra. You can dance to it. That’s why Beauty And The Beat exists.”
The ever so lovely Dr Rob @ Test Pressing asked us what a top 12 of end-of-the-night tunes would sound like and this is what we came up with. Here’s the reproduction of the original Test Pressing post. All bona fide BATB classics right there.
PS: I didn’t bribe Rob in any way for that last paragraph! + more
Although I entered the race in January, I still wasn’t sure to be on the start line 10 days prior to the event. A couple of encounters with the tarmac resulting in a few broken bones and a stressed body had put me out of xterra Portugal and IM Nice already. However as I was finally starting to recover some fitness and motivation along the way, I thought I’d give the race a go as I’d heard raving reports from last year’s inaugural event.
Scanno is a couple of hours drive away from Rome, tucked away in the Abruzzo region. The meandering road to get there is stunning, the lago is rather inviting, and sitting at 1000m altitude this is mountain territory with not an inch of flat in sight. Typical authentic Italian village where a lot of life is concentrated around the main piazza, which conveniently enough is where my accommodation Albergo Centrale happens to be.