Accumulated Memories

To fear the world we have organized and led for three-quarters of a century, to abandon the ideals we have advanced around the globe, to refuse the obligations of international leadership for the sake of some half-baked, spurious nationalism cooked up by people who would rather find scapegoats than solve problems is unpatriotic. American nationalism isn’t the same as in other countries. It isn’t nativist or imperial or xenophobic, or it shouldn’t be. Those attachments belong with other tired dogmas that Americans consigned to the ash heap of history.

– John McCain, “The Restless Wave”

Crushed Like a Fine Wine

One of the most soul crushing aspects of motor sports is that a driver can be knocked out of the race before they’ve even completed the first turn. Or, as was the case for Valtteri Bottas in Azerbaijan, going from first to DNF on the final lap because of a blowout due to debris on the track. Of course it’s part of the sport, but that can be little consolation, even without championships on the line.

In a backwards kind of way this is actually one of the things that attracts me to motorsports like F1 and Le Mans. Not so much the soul crushing aspect, but that because the cars change from race to race, so much emphasis is put on the engineering of the car. You could have the greatest driver to ever drive, but if his engineers aren’t up to the task then all is for naught. Even the greatest driver ever can’t win a race in a car that can’t last a lap.

The drivers and teams, though, are not the only ones whose souls get pressed into a fine wine when another driver loses control and slews across the track into your man. Prior to my first experience at a Grand Prix I always wondered how the supports must feel when their driver has to retire. With the international aspects of F1 there are a lot of people traveling all over the world to cheer on their favorite drivers and teams. And anyone who has ever priced a plane ticket, let alone an F1 ticket, will know that this isn’t cheap.

It was always an abstract thought though, until I looked up at the monitor on lap 21 of the 2017 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and saw Daniel Ricciardo’s Red Bull stopped in the grass. And then it hit me, that feeling right there is what thousands of fans around the world feel every weekend.

Though even getting to see your favorite driver go for 21 laps is an experience I’ll never forget.

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And even though your hero might go out before the first turn, it’s not always a loss.

The Cause of and Solution To

The past couple Thursday’s I’ve had trouble accessing some websites on the Rising Star WiFi. Some load just fine, while others (including wordpress) do not. The past couple weeks I’ve just hotspotted my phone and loaded it that way, but today I decided to try and figure out whether the issue was on my computer or their router. Continue reading “The Cause of and Solution To”

It’s the Little Things

While sipping tea atop the Etihad towers and munching on tea food I came across one of the more brilliant minor designs that I have seen. One of the issues that annoys me most about dining in a restaurant is the final bill. Not the paying or the final total (though these too can be issues of annoyance) but in how the bill is presented. Specifically that, when paying by card, there is nowhere to put the pen. When presented in a folder, the pen often prevents the folder from closing. On occasion there is enough room to tuck it in the spine, but while functional, it is less then ideal as it puts added stress on the seam and results in a broken folder (a broken or *gasp* missing credit card holder in a folder sets off a serious neurotic episode, and let’s not even discuss the ‘coin’ problem). Continue reading “It’s the Little Things”

Breakfast

What a way to start.

I’ve never been much of a ‘morning’ person, but, of all the possible meals in a day, breakfast seems offers the most peace and tranquility. Over the past year I have begun to appreciate this aspect of the meal more and more. Though ‘peace and tranquility’ may not be the most apt adjectives. Some breakfasts are spent hurriedly downing and egg whilst The Peanut tries to smear an apuu (read: banana) all over my pants. Others are spent in a small local coffee shop with a cappuccino and a danish writing to you wonderful people. Continue reading “Breakfast”

Leave It All on the Course

So once again I have managed to translate myself, on foot, 26.2 miles. Why you ask? Because it was there. Though now there may be a further reason: a sub 5 hour time. Last time I finished in 5:22:44. This year I finished in…5:01:09. So close. IĀ feel good about it though. I left everything I had on the course and suffered a near critical hip flexor failure at about mile 16. Continue reading “Leave It All on the Course”