Blog Archives

Wave your flag right, cabron!

Everyone knows flags are part and parcel of soccer games. They’re right up there with jerseys, face paint and the wave (… unless you’re English …).

But god only knows how many freaking Mexicans keep waving the flag backwards??! Too damn many to count. That’s how many. Every TRI game I’ve been to or seen on TV has some idiot jumping up and down shaking/waving the flag the wrong way.

For fracks sake, the team is called el TRI, tricolor. Everyone knows the three colors are green, white and red. NOT red, white and green!

Please, mis mexicanos, quit embarrassing me and your mamas at home. When you spot the cameraman, make sure you’re holding the GREEN WITH RIGHT HAND.

Like so …

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Not, like so …

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PHOTOS: From Thursday’s Gold Cup game between Mexico and Canada. Marco Fabian (10) and fans are celebrating a successful penalty shot.

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It’s 100% possible for Mexico to beat Brazil today

All they have to do is review their history. The last few match-ups between these two teams have been epic battles. Even before the Olympics, in an international friendly, Mexico put the smack down on this team. People argued it was a fluke until the *unthinkable happened — Mexico beat out Brazil for the gold medal last summer.

When: Today, June 19 at 12 p.m. PDT
Watch: ESPN, ESPN3 stream

And if we need a little inspiration to get behind the team, the player and the Chepo, just take a look at what happens when you leave it all out on the field.

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Olympics Day 15 - Men's Football Final - Brazil v Mexico

PHOTOS: All from 2012 Olympic medal game held at Wembley Stadium last August.

Legit bowler now

Apparently, I’ve been bowling too much for my own good. I’ve started developing a callus on my middle finger. Super sexy, I know.

To nip it in the bud, I began using a skin protector (courtesy of KC) that has the same effect on my finger as a top coat on a pair of nylons. Grossss

I’m now one of those people — the type who shows up to the alley with her own bag, monogrammed ball, shoes, and now … skin protector. Too bad my game is still mediocre and doesn’t live up to the hype or preparation.

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How Claudia Estela got her groove back

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The season started out promising. I had a personal-best 154 during the first night. It was followed by a couple more 100+ games. Normally, I’d be relishing in my handiwork. But this was the first night of league — the night that establishes averages and handicaps.

I had just single-handedly screwed my team. That is unsustainable bowling for me. There’s no way I could bowl that well or that consistently over the course of the league.

And I was right. After that initial night, I began my downward slide. My average kept dropping: 125, 120, 116, 110. Some nights, I struggled to hit 90.

I’d been wallowing in a bowling funk and dragging the team down. After five weeks, were were steadfastly in second-to-last place.

But last night, I got the bowling equivalent of Taye Diggs in Jamaica. Well, not quite (not at all, really), but I did get my groove back (and a bonus new high score).

And that’s important because the best part about bowling is the strut back after a strike. Right, Jesus?

PHOTO: My latest scores. Note the NINE strikes and SIX spares – that’s half my game.

Makes zero sense. I can see that now.

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I think it’s about time I pull out the Roger Murtaugh card.

I’m getting way too old to run a half marathon without training.

That seems superfluous, right? Regardless of age, people shouldn’t run 13.1 miles without proper training.

Well, it doesn’t go without saying in my universe. Until very recently I didn’t pay too much mind to this so-called concept of doing mini-runs to build stamina and endurance come race day. Explosive performance. Who needs it? Personal best. A tad needy, no? Quick recovery. Why hide the war wounds?

With a complete straight face, I say that my lack of training stems from my belief in being super awesome. I’ve written before how running marathons and logging those miles warps your sense of judgement for other races. I’m stuck in a marathon frame-of-mind … despite having dealt with injuries.

To kick off 2013, I signed up for the Los Angeles New Year’s Race, a nighttime venture that took you through downtown, Elysian Park, Chinatown and ended near LA Live.

I started training four weeks before the race. I stopped training three weeks before the race.

I trained for a whopping ONE WEEK. I showed up at the start line cold, out of practice and taped up.

Result? Pain. Stiffness. Tons of walking. And a crude reality check.

PHOTO: Race promo running past The Times building. From www.newyearsrace.com

 

My Resoluteness

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I’ve had the same goal for three  years — run 500 miles in a calendar year. I’ve been thwarted just as many times.

In early December, I was training for a half marathon. I ran 6.5 miles without incident. It wasn’t until the next day, while walking, that I got an awful, piercing pain in my foot. A week later it hadn’t gone away. A walk through San Francisco floored me. I assumed a stress fracture. But, then, I settled on plantar fasciitis. Ice. KT tape. New shoes.

Resolution failure.

This 2013 will be different. So different that I’m renaming it. A quick thesaurus search came up with some options. Aim? Too weak sauce. Intention? A  built-in escape hatch. I had good intentions, but … Promise? I promise to run … (so ludicrous I can’t even finish)

Resoluteness, though, that’s different. This is my style of word — heady, heavy, purposeful, determined … gravitas.

This is my e-oath to go ahead and rock this thing.

Bowling’s second-class citizenry

To be filed under: I have other interests besides soccer

There’s a sick, sad reality unfolding in SoCal’s bowling alleys. Frankly, I’m surprised no one has alerted the ACLU about this prevalent and blatant systemic racism, this miscarriage of justice, this deep-rooted inequity that privileges the few at the expense of the many.

Yes, I’m talking about bowling.

If you’re not in a bowling league, you’d might as well forfeit any desire or wish to play during the week. Of course, you can seek out other alleys but you’d have to pay top dollar for them (Lucky Strike, anyone?). And who really has that kind of money to spare these days?

This is how ex-leaguers bowl during the week.

Many times I’ve tried to go bowling during the week only to be foiled by The Man The League. The last time was a few weeks ago and when we struck out at all the lanes, we ended up “bowling” at a bar.

I get it. I really do. I was in a league. You’re playing for money and pride and don’t want rowdy assholes who don’t understand proper lane decorum standing in your peripheral and getting in the way of your quest for top scorer, top handicap. Proper manners should be enough to keep you from yelling at Dude to SIT THE EFF DOWN and WAIT BEFORE  GETTING ALL UP IN YOUR GRILL.

But, know what? Being in a league doesn’t assure you a private bowling alley. You  must still SHARE THE LANES.

And that brings me to the impetus of my rage: Why are there never any open lanes during the week? Not until 10 p.m., 10:45 p.m., 11 p.m.

Really? not a single one!

Unbelievable. Inconceivable.

What’s worse is my realization that I was part of this problem, this privileged elite. Last year, when I was in a league, I strutted along the alley like I owned those lanes. (Go Spare-ta!) Damn, I was the same stuck-up punk who booted an innocent fun-loving non-leaguer from the game until 9 p.m.

Mine eyes are open. Blinded no longer.

I’m standing up for bowling’s second-class citizens everywhere. What’s a girl got to do to get a lane at a decent hour on a Wednesday or Thursday night??

PHOTO: from OhioHistoryCentral.org  and from that outing of non-bowling.

Week 4 Update: Funky divas in 3D

During my last update, I had nothing to report. This one is much more positive. I ran my 7 miles. I picked a hilly route around my house and attacked it with my new shoes and new soundtrack.

I was feeling some ’90s R&B girl power. Who better than my chicas from En Vogue? Luckily, “The Very Best of…” was just long enough to get me through the distance. That and it gave me the extra kick I needed around mile 6. Made me channel my inner funky diva.

I know “Free your mind” talks about prejudice. But damnit if it isn’t also good advice on a run: Free your mind, the rest will follow.

Ooh, also occurred this week: I signed up for the LA Marathon as part of a two-person relay team. More on that later…

PHOTO:  The album cover that’s becoming my new running soundtrack.

The simplest things are the hardest to follow

Against my better judgment, I’ve started to train for a half marathon. The race is in 43 days, which for me means that I have practically an eternity to train. Here’s hoping I don’t get bored, call it quits and decide to run cold on race day. Hey, it’s happened before.

In an effort to keep myself to the training program, I’m sharing my schedule. It’s nothing fancy and completely doable. That’s its Achilles heel—if it’s too simple, I won’t do it. I’ll check in weekly to offer myself kudos or slap my hands if I haven’t stuck to it.

First KUDOS of the year! I did my light runs for Week 1

WEEK 1
Jan 1: Run 3 miles
Also, run 20 to 30 minutes at least twice a week.

WEEK 2
Jan. 7: Run 5 miles

WEEK 3
Jan. 14: Run 7 miles

WEEK 4
Jan. 21: Run 9 miles

WEEK 5
Jan. 28: Run 10 miles

WEEK 6
Feb. 4: Run 12 miles

WEEK 7
Feb. 11: Run 7 miles

WEEK 8
Feb. 19: Race Day

turkey coma

I haven’t shared this with people… well, because I’m modest.

Ha!

I’ve just been lazy or flighty or deficient in my attention or comatose from the tryptophan.

But here it is and here’s the proof of the matter.  About two weeks ago, I BOWLED A TURKEY!

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I don’t care if it was pure dumb luck or tenacious skills, I did it and I’m owning it.  I ended this game with a total 5 strikes, two splits, one gutter and a personal-best 146.

ON A RELATED NOTE: In league, the amazing, wish-you-were-us SPARE-TA! is finally out of the gutter.  We moved out last place and firmly into second-to-last place.  I’ve gotten my groove back since this climactic moment of bowling life and it’s definitely helped my performance in league.