http://billystyle.com

Week of Worlds at The Wakeboard Camp

1

The WWA World Championships are this week in Orlando. That means that this is a crazy week at work. Crazy awesome though.

So just today, I coached in the morning. I had one of three boats. I had a family of a father and two sons. They all improved and started to figure out proper jumping position, so that was cool. Also riding on the lake was Ben Greenwood and his crew of riders competing in the tournament. Kurt Robertson and his buddies were out there as well getting tuned up for the competition.

Here is a list of moves I witnessed today, just when I was nearby. Pete Rose (Marcos Torres and Ben Greenwood), 720s (Bob Sichel and Ben Greenwood), backside 540 (Paulie Koch), and many other great moves. There’s even a 13 year old girl doing switch 540s, both heelside and toeside. Yeah.

If you don’t know what any of this means, come to Florida and I’ll teach ya! Life is pretty good here. I even got to ride and did me a roast beef tantrum. Woo!

Blueberries

0

The title has nothing to do with this post, it was just the first word that came into my brain when the cursor was blinking in the Title field.

Opening Thoughts

Just a bit ago when I went to write this post, I found that all of my sites were down, hosted by the same company. I checked their own site and it was also down. Everything was back up a couple of minutes later, but I managed to do some calculations during that time. They guarantee 99.9% up time, which gives them a little under 9 hours per year of down time. That’s a bit shy of an hour per month, which they have gone nowhere near. So well done BlueHost, well done. I still like you.

Wakeboarding

Life is good, as it has been ever since I moved to Florida. Here are some fun things that happened this week. I landed a tantrum to blind with an indy grab for the first time. That’s a fun one. I have ridden with plenty of good friends this week, and during one set I tried a double flip for the first time ever. That scared the snot out of me, which was really fun. Here’s the video: (It’s poor quality, but here is the link to the high quality version.)

Then today, I went riding with my friends Ben Greenwood and Trevor Hansen. After that, we came home and Trevor took a look at the video above there.

Trevor is, to date, the only person to land the move I tried, a double back roll, on a normal wake, as in not using a double up. (I’ll put the video below) He gave me a thumbs up and proceeded to coach me and break down the video to help encourage me to try it again and land the thing. That was pretty awesome in itself! I just tried the move on a whim, and now I feel motivated to land a double invert on a wakeboard. I mean come on, I have been coached by the only person in the world who has done it wake to wake. That’s awesome.

Here’s the aforementioned video:

Sorry, the video can’t be embedded on here. That’s something about online videos that bugs me, not allowing people to put them on their site, but whatever, that’s for another time. Check it out on Trevor’s blog here: Trevor’s Double Back Roll.

Nice huh? Yeah, he’s good. So is Ben. He landed a lot of different 720s today and a couple 900s.

Non-Wakeboarding

I get thoughts from time to time of what to blog about. I usually forget those by the time I sit back down at this desk. I’m okay with that, but perhaps I should try to work on fixing my retention method. So all I really have right now is this link for you:

Go Away: Hilarious email conversations between a talented graphic artist and people who have crossed him. The top post is a great place to start reading.

The Butt Cut 2010

5

Well I suppose it’s finally time for the tale of my Earth Day 2010 butt laceration incident. It was a lovely Thursday here in Florida and just so happened to be Earth Day. I went to McCormick’s Cable Park with some co-workers and our Swedish contingent who were in their last of 4 weeks with us. There were a lot of people at the cable, so I took a few laps, got warmed up, crashed on something I don’t remember now, then got back in line. The line took a good 20 minutes to get through, so when I got going again, I didn’t want to fall. That plays a part in the story. You can click the pictures for bigger versions.

Rainbow Rail

Bec on the rail. The red circle is where the collision took place.

For those of you who aren’t aware, a cable park is a place where us wakeboarders are pulled around a lake in a circle by a mechanism that runs along a cable strung tightly up about 30 feet above the water. It lets us ride without a boat and practice fun things like sliding across solid objects, known as rails and kickers.

So on lap 1 of my second ride that day, I hit the rainbow rail (shaped in an arch, just like a rainbow) and misjudged it, so I jumped off to the side of the rail where the rope could pull me back toward the rail. I was riding on the water, and felt the rope trying to pull me back into the rail. I knew I should let go, but not wanting to get back in line, I decided I should try to avoid the inevitable collision with said rail.

Bad decision.

With less than 10 feet of rail remaining, I got pulled right into it and was flung around to where I got pretty disoriented for a minute and had a few painful spots all over my body, namely my elbows and my buttocks. The water was murky, so I couldn’t see the damage. All I knew was that my butt felt the same as my left arm, which just had a medium size raspberry on it, so I didn’t panic.

After swimming to the shore, I noticed my shorts were ripped open pretty nicely, so I pulled them back and saw quite a bit of raw Billy butt flesh. I couldn’t see it too well because of my life jacket, but I decided to get to the office quickly so I could get some first aid action on it quickly.

Rainbow Close Up

Close up of what cut me. That small angled gap acted like a knife.

Once outside the office I took my jacket off and had a good look at the damage, it was pretty significant. Jesse, the girl I had paid to ride for the day, was sitting outside, and I let her see the wound. She got pretty wide-eyed, then told me how to get to the nearby hospital.

I wasn’t in much pain, and needed to get my belongings, so I took the walk (maybe 100 yards) back to my stuff. Still only minor pain, so I proceeded to show off my fresh gash to all the people I knew. I warned them all that it was very gory and they shouldn’t see it if they easily get sick. The reaction was the same from most people: very wide eyes, some expletive, and disbelief. We took pictures and all that good stuff, then I drove myself to the hospital with Cassie, the daughter of my boss who had just cut her foot open on a bike earlier that day.

At the hospital, I was in the unfortunate position of having a few guys standing behind me looking at my exposed backside making comments. Once the internal stitches and surface staples were in, those guys standing there looking at my butt made remarks such as “That looks real nice.” That was a bit odd.

Anyway, I’m all healed up now and I literally have a bad ass scar. Pun intended! We had a fun staple removing mini party at my house and I even got to take one of them out myself. Thanks to Ben for providing the proper tool and my nurses Kathy and Allison.

Okay, now that it’s all said and done, here is the link to some very graphic pictures of the butt. I haven’t put them in this post because of how gross they are. Enjoy! Warning: Very graphic butt laceration pictures. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Butt Injury #2 Prelude

3

Word is out that I’ve injured my right butt cheek yet again. It is all true and as I type this I have 10 staples holding my new butt hole together.

I’m waiting for the right time to blog about the whole thing, which I figure will be within a couple weeks of when I get the staples removed.

I’ll have a nice detailed story just like I did when I tore another butt hole in the same cheek just under a year ago. I will tell you now that this one was a wakeboard injury and that the gay jokes will still be aplenty. Last time I got a large piece of wood jammed into my butt, this time I got a new butt hole torn by a rainbow. Yes, that’s right, a rainbow.

So hold tight, the story, along with very graphic gory pictures, is on its way.

Turtles and Rockets

0

The past few weeks here in Clermont have been pretty windy. We haven’t done a whole lot of quality wakeboarding, and it was starting to get a bit annoying. Then today happened.

2009-11-16In the past 24 hours, I haven’t been one bit too warm or cold and I’ve been mostly just wearing shorts the whole time. The wind has been almost non-existent, the air temperature is like a nice Oregon summer day and the water is a perfect refreshing temperature.

This is why I moved here. My work day consisted of going to work at 10am to cover Bob’s kitchen shift. I did a little emailing and sandwich making. I went for a wakeboard at lunch time and had some fun on the glassy lake. For the afternoon I coached four people and had a great time. Two new moves were landed and one rider landed a toeside 360, which he hadn’t done in a while.

Oh, to explain that title now. At lunch, I walked outside and noticed a big white jet stream to the east in the sky. Apparently a rocket or satellite had just launched from the Kennedy Space Center, cool! Then as we went out for the afternoon set of riding, I noticed a pair of turtles had crawled up on our boat lifts to do a little relaxing in the sun. Later on, I put the boat on a different lift, and the turtles decided it was in their best interest to plop into the water.

It was just an awesome relaxing day with some good wakeboarding. The forecast shows that more of this is to be expected. Awesome, can’t wait. Yay Florida!

Another Day in the Life

0

Today was another good day to give the good readers a taste of what it is I’m doing down here.

I got to sleep in a bit today, had the morning off. At 9:30, I left to help Amber, my friend (and super duper pro wakeboarder) from Australia, pack up her stuff and move into her new place. Got done around noon, so I came home, showered, and headed over to work.

I was on the schedule to coach this afternoon, so I heated up some pizza from last night and had some lunch before going out on the boat. Today I had 2 Greek riders, a couple from Indiana, and a dude from Illinois (I think). We had a good time out there. Worked on some tantrums, some 180s, some toeside jumping, and switch riding. During that time, there were as many as 5 boats out on the lake running the same line, since they were all boats somehow tied to The Wakeboard Camp. Kyle and Ben (both super duper pro wakeboarders) had some private lessons to give, then 3 camp boats with 4-5 people in each of them.

After riding and putting the boats away, we all hung out a bit and talked about the rides during the day.

My night ended with going out for a sushi dinner, which Amber bought for me for helping her move, awesome. I went with Amber and Chad (super duper wakeboard coach), my neighbor, and met up with a foursome of people from England and Australia. Had a great time talking and laughing and what not, and now I’m about to pass out.

So, today I ate/coached/talked with and met people from French Canada, Normal Canada, Greece, Sweden, England, Australia, and the good old US of A.

That’s actually a pretty typical day (except the moving part) here in the spring/summer time. I dig it. I’ve never left the 48 continental states, but I get to meet people from all over the world every day. Good fun!

A Typical Day

2

I know plenty of my friends out there are pretty curious as to what it’s like having a job where you just get to play around, so I’ll list off what I did on Friday of last week.

I had the morning off, so I was pretty lazy. Did a little cleaning around the house and some reading, then headed over to work around noon. Four of us coaches planned on riding at lunch time, so we took two boats out. I went with Bob Sichel, the son of the Camp owner, and an up and coming rider; he shreds.

I rode first, the water was right around 50° F, so I wore a full wetsuit. We had three campers in the boat to watch us ride, Leo, Ciarn, and Owen (those are all spelled incorrectly) of Ireland. The weather was sunny and the air was calm, so the water was super glassy. I slid around a bit, but then the boat started acting up and wouldn’t rev over 3,000 rpm. That killed our session, but it was an easy fix. Dang.

So then I coached in the afternoon. I had the Irishmen. The other boat had Nick from Greece and Jeroe from the Netherlands. My guys had been here all week and were looking to do a little free riding on the wakeboards, then each wanted some time on the wakeskate. So I didn’t really do much coaching, just driving and rocking to good music, getting entertained by some hilarious crazy people. They were all beginners, but had a great week and learned a lot. It was a very fun afternoon, and I even had my first experience pulling a guy wakeboarding while only wearing a speedo and a life jacket – horrible but awesome.

After that easy afternoon, Bob and I got ready to ride again. This time the boat behaved well. I had a fun set. My best feeling move was a switch heelside 360 that I got a decent mute grab on. I finished with plenty of time, so I am planning on getting my switch hs 5 next week. Then Bob rode and had an awesome set. I think it was the first time that he got three of his toughest moves landed in one set: heelside backside 540, huge melan front mobe, and a dum dum. Awesome set, that kid’s getting good.

We then took the boats out of the lake, wiped them down, gassed them up, put the covers on, put the boards away, and ate some dinner. Right now we have Cam, a French-Canadian girl, who is an awesome chef. So dinner was good. I went home, took a shower and nap, then got a text from my roommate and fellow employee, Cason, telling me to go to Sports On Tap. That’s the sports bar across the street from work. So I did.

It’s typical when we have cool campers for a week that we go over there to have one last fun hang out. Unfortunately, most people choose to get sloppy drunk for a fun time…which gets a bit old, but oh well. So I went over, had my usual water, and watched some Irish dudes do their thing. There was some good entertainment. I left before the rest of the crew and I think I watched some basketball or something and went to bed.

So there ya have it, my Friday. This week is looking real nice, I was driving around today with my windows down, it feels like spring/summer down here. This should be a great riding week. I’m hoping to start landing some new stuff. Peace out!