Saturday, 28 February 2009

Swimday Friday

The day started with a few too many early work calls, but the stress of it all dissolved when I reached the beach. Pristine ocean, glassy even, with crystal clear water reflecting the summer. Today the triathletes were in preparation for a race in Queensland so the wetsuits they were training in for Hobart were replaced with speedos and finally I was in with a chance to keep up with them. The water was warm, though they were used to the wetsuits and found it cool, and while I kept pretty close - they were still faster than me, but not all of them. There's still hope - I can make it to the front of the pack, maybe... It might take some work, but it's fun trying.

Thursday, 26 February 2009

Some Day Soon

I don't post a lot of women here at Superchilled, it's true. But today is an exception, obviously. Readers from Australia will know of Natalie Bassingthwaighte through a number of media sources. More recently she has released a series of singles and just last week her new album 1000 Stars. I got to meet her at a friend's party on Saturday night and I have to say she's very sexy. She happens to be from my home town as well, which is better still, but what I like even more is her music, and while I've just downloaded the album from itunes, I'm already a fan. The single Some Day Soon (cover image above) is a great feel good track and I'm enjoying turning it up loud. Definitely worth checking out. 

Monday, 23 February 2009

Swatch This

The thing with moving is, you're not just packing to leave, you're also preparing to arrive somewhere else, and that gives you a whole lot more work to do. This weekend has been filled with activities incorporating the old, the new and various events in between, like work and birthday parties (another post on that later this week) and swimming of course. Today's focus was the new place, not too far away from where we are now, but a lot closer to the water (which is always good, sparing tsunamis). 

In keeping with the aquatic theme the colours above have been shortlisted for living spaces in the new abode. I love the names they make up for paints, not just Stone, but Stone Pillar, and not just Blue but Blue Ridge. Of course these are relatively tame examples of paint names and they at least have some semblance of the actual colour. We have been varnishing and resurfacing and measuring and fitting (or de-fitting) things, discovering doors and gates that don't close quite how they're supposed to and wearing masks and gloves to protect from toxic chemicals and wearing paints that didn't quite make it to their destination. The place is already starting to sparkle, but when the new colours arrive and the new appliances & pieces of our current furniture & art, that's when it will start to feel like home.

Thursday, 19 February 2009

I'm Boxing

We're talking cardboard boxes, I'm afraid. I have a stack of them in the garage ready to be inflated and filled with everything from books to bowls, candles to canvases, it all has to go out the door onto a truck and into somewhere new. I'm going to miss living here. It has been home for more than 9 years, 9 very good years. The garden has grown around us, the colours and fittings have changed and so have we. It's a very different place to the one we stepped into all those years ago, personalised, refreshed, and now it's time for someone else to enjoy it. I'm sad yet happy all at once. The times spent with friends and family, the laughs and the tears, all a part of the fabric of our history here. That will never go, but our presence here will. The future is so incredibly bright, and busy, and I'm looking forward to it and scared by it all at once. But if you don't jump you don't know if you can fly.

Monday, 16 February 2009

Cover Up

Back in the mid 80's there was the perfect show for a young gay boy, and this TV show was called Cover Up. Its star Jon-Erik Hexum was of course the focus, and while there were loads of female models, I don't recall anyone else much in the show. He played an undercover agent disguised as a model while on assignment with the (female) photographer. I think I cried for weeks when I learned he died after a tragic accident on set, and with just one series completed. Ah, only the good die young! Whenever I hear the theme (Bonnie Tyler's Holding out for a Hero - it takes me back.)

For those of you old enough to remember it, here follows the opening credits. You'll have to edit out the 80's hair, but it still brings back fond memories...

1 min 12 sec

Does anyone have similarly memorable TV series?

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

North Bondi Ocean Classic

It was a picture postcard Sunday at Bondi Beach. We woke to a day they predicted to be extremely hot, with fires roaring in the far south and more sizzling heat to come, but it was a stunning day here on the coast. We headed to Bondi where we expected hoards of people and parking nightmares, but the traffic was absent and the crowds cute. The sun warm, a cool breeze and an ocean the azure of a deserted sand island.

The race began and we dived into a waveless surf. My goggles instantly fogged up, the water hellishly cold!! Just the day before it was beautiful, not warm but refreshing, today an icy 16C. I thrashed to keep warm but it was not my best race start. By half way I wasn't so cold any more and the fog had cleared revealing the ripples in the sand below, but my toes started to feel numb. I kept to my race plan and powered to the finish, but I think I lost it at the start, still a reasonable time and good fun, we'll be back next year. A well run race, always, and the eye candy certainly makes it easy to hang around for the race results.

Lunch after a race is of course a great feast and a new (to us) cafe created the perfect meal to share with friends. I could have stayed there there all day. 

Now I need to up my training a little to get a bit more competitive in the water for the upcoming races. But at the same time I have a million other things going on. Where is that 36 hr day?

Saturday, 7 February 2009

The Matt Mitcham Files

For all the Matt Mitcham-ophiles out there - The Advocate has a feature on him in their latest edition (technically the March edition I believe). There are more photos and videos too. You can experience the whole multimedia feature here.

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Keeping warm in the Icy North

So you've been waking up with snow up to your belly button...
You're obviously not on this half of the planet, so today we're helping you with some tips on surviving the truly superchilled days. 

  • Firstly, set the oven to your preferred heat and pop in your clothes for the next day. Be sure to avoid synthetics if you want to look good. When you get dressed in the morning you'll be ready to face the world like a Viking. (If you've been reading the blog you might have spotted a trend here)
  • Find a tanker of high strength alcohol, set it to freeze in blocks on your front yard, or large balcony. Make an igloo out of it all (the exercise will keep you warm) and stand there admiring your work. Then set in on fire. There's nothing quite like fire and ice. Make sure you have a very large glass inside to catch the melting drops & when the spectacle has ended find the glass and warm yourself from the inside. Better still, ensure you have 2 glasses and warm up with company.
  • If you don't have a sauna or hot tub, find someone or somewhere who does. It needs to be close to the great outdoors so once you've taken as much heat as you can, you can run outside and roll in the snow. Naked of course - there is no other way. I know of a spot in Sweden where there is a sauna on a frozen lake, you take a dip in the water through a hole made in the ice, then rush back to the sauna and do it all over again. Addictive.
  • Exercise, sure you might need skins, jackets, thermonuclear underwear, but get out there and move, and have a lot of fun. Cross country skiing is my personal favourite in the white stuff.
  • Create an instant party. Phone up a collection of your friends, ask them to bring along something hot, if it's a hot guy then all the better, hot chillies, roasts, heaters, firewood, hot movies... whatever it takes and have a Superchilled HOT PARTY. If you get snowed in,  keep on partying. 
  • Still not warm? Click on this link, or one like it and get yourself out of there. Of course you need to find an airport, train, bus or ocean-liner that's accessible and heading south. Go as far as you can. Australia is pretty cheap to travel right now where you can double your money given our current exchange rates. Oh and with Mardi Gras happening over the next month (or for Mardi Gras in Rio - it's February 21-24) there are lots of hot reasons to getaway from the chill.

Sunday, 1 February 2009

Things to do on Superhot days

  • Prepare your clothes in advance, fold them neatly and place them into your freezer the night before to ensure a superchilled start to your day.
  • Find yourself a convertible, seal all the doors and pop in a hose, fill it with water and jump in, you'll be the envy of everyone in your traffic jam on the way to the beach, and who knows who might want to come home with you.
  • Find a beach, we recommend Rio, replete with umbrellas, sun protection, eye candy and an abundance of cold clear water to swim in. The important thing to take with you is superchilled water, no not to drink, to start water fights with and a stash of water balloons to do a good job of it. What is a hot summer without a proper water fight after all? When you've used up all your water, ensure your beach waiter is ready on hand for a refreshing drink. (This is where Rio is a world leader.)
  • Get fans, lots of fans, and ask them to come to your place with grapes, cold beers / water / your preferred cold beverage and ensure you are kept comfortable and cool. If you're not as popular as you thought, try the traditional plug in fan, so long as you don't live in Victoria where power supply might be a problem...
  • Here at superchilled we care for the environment, so air-conditioning is a no go zone, if you do succumb to the lure of the remote - know it WAS you who just killed the electricity grid.
  • If you know any elite athletes you'll know where they store their ice baths, go be very friendly with them and chill with them for a bit. You know you want to.
  • If it's all too much and these tips haven't kept you cool long enough, turn the thermostat up a notch and get thoroughly overheated. Sweat it out with someone you love, and take a cold shower together afterwards. Press repeat.