How To Ruin Someone’s Day

11.8.2011 | 11:43 am

We had gone on a ride earlier that day, so even though it was beautiful outside, I told The Hammer I needed to stay home and work on my book.

So she went to Lambert Park — a terrific little park about a mile from where we live — without me, taking Nikita — the approaching-elderly Malamute The Hammer brought to our marriage — on a walk on her own.

Now, Alpine, Utah is a tiny town, with the feel of Mayberry. People are nice in general. A little more laid-back than most places. You kind of need to be that way if you’re going to live in a town without a single grocery store or restaurant in it.

And if the people in Alpine are friendly and easy-going, the Lambert Park trail system is even more that way. People bring their kids here to learn to mountain bike. Cyclists come here when they don’t have time to go up American Fork Canyon or to Corner Canyon. People come here for a short ride on their horses.

And people come here to walk their dogs.

And until The Hammer got home from her walk this particular day, I had never heard of anyone being anything but incredibly friendly to each other at this park.

Encounter 1: Rodeo Down

So The Hammer is walking Nikita in Lambert Park. One of the popular trails there is called “Rodeo.” It’s got both an “Up” trail and a “Down” trail. She’s walking down the Down trail when she hears a bike coming.

As a cyclist, The Hammer knows this is a fun trail to go fast on, so she holds Nikita by the collar and moves off the trail.

As the 60-ish year-old man goes by, The Hammer starts, “Have a good…”

“You shouldn’t be on this trail!” The man interrupts, yelling.

Perhaps this man thought he owns the trail. Perhaps he didn’t realize that Lambert Park is multi-use and people walk (and trail run) on all of the trails here, all the time.

Perhaps he didn’t realize that around here, people don’t yell at each other.

And almost certainly, he thought he could shout at a lone woman without consequence.


“First of all,” The Hammer replied, “I have every right to be on this trail. Second, I got out of the way for you, even though pedestrians have the right of way.”

“People ride fast down this trail!” The man yelled back. “I could have hit you!”

“Kids ride on this trail,” shot back The Hammer. “And sometimes there are cyclists stopped in the trail. If you can’t control your speed and avoid someone, you’re going too fast.”

At which point, the man started up again, continuing down the trail (with a woman — possibly the man’s wife — riding behind, avoiding meeting The Hammer’s eyes.

And The Hammer continued her walk.

Encounter 2: Rodeo Up

At one of the places the trails cross, Hammer switched over to Rodeo Up. Once again, she heard a bike coming. Once again, she took her dog by the collar and moved out of the trail.

And once again, it was the man.

“Are you going to yell at me for being on your trails again?” asked The Hammer.

“No,” said the man, riding by. “I don’t care if you’re on Rodeo Up.”

And then, as he passed The Hammer, he said it: “Bitch.”

Astonished, The Hammer looked to the woman riding behind the man. “You should be embarrassed to be with that man,” The Hammer said.

“He’s just trying to keep the trails safe for everyone,” replied the woman.



For pretty much the rest of the day — and the day after that — The Hammer and I found ourselves constantly talking about this encounter. We just couldn’t believe it. We kept asking each other questions, like:

  • Would he have said any of this if both of us were there? We kind of suspect not.
  • Did he really think he was making anything safer for anyone? Again, we kind of suspect not.
  • Was he surprised that he didn’t get away with shouting at a lone woman? We expect he was.
  • Why would he do this? That’s the real poser of a question, the one we keep talking about. Why would anyone on a trail ever be anything but glad to see another person — a person who had already yielded — on a trail? Was he just in a foul mood and wanted to spread it around?

Obviously, we don’t know the answer to any of these. And I kind of doubt that a guy like that would read my blog (and frankly hope a person like that doesn’t). But in the off chance that he does, well, congratulations. You have the honor of being the first person I’ve ever come across at Lambert Park who was anything but friendly and polite.

That’s behavior I would expect from someone yelling from a car window — not from someone in a small town, riding on a neighborhood trail.


Race Report: The Turkey “Tri”

11.6.2011 | 10:44 am

IMG_3782 - Version 2.jpgSome races are so huge, so intense, so incredibly epic they require time to absorb what you have have just done. To think about what you have just accomplished. These races change who you are, how you perceive the world. From the moment you cross that finish line, you know that from that point forward, you will divide your life into everything that happened before the race, and everything that happens since.

The Telos Turkey Tri — which The Hammer, The Swimmer, and I did last Saturday — is not one of those races.

But it was a strange race.

Last week, I made it pretty darned clear that the Turkey Tri mattered, mostly because it was genuinely difficult to figure out who would come out on top:

  • The Hammer: a very strong runner and strong cyclist, but not fast in the pool.
  • The Swimmer: The Hammer’s daughter, a very fast runner and varsity team swimmer, who doesn’t really ride
  • Me: Fast on the bike, not so fast on the run, and slightly slower than the Hammer in the pool.

Before the Race

In the days leading up to it, The Hammer and I obsessed way too much over this race. Not really so much about race tactics, but about who would win. We just didn’t know.

And then, as the race got closer, our obsession turned toward the weather. It looked like it was going to be bad. As in, ice-on-the-ground-and-snow-in-the-air bad. The race organizers confirmed as much, letting us know by email that the bike part of the race might be canceled.

Still, the night before the race I went ahead and put all the bikes in The BikeMobile, just in case the weather turned out to work in our favor.

But when we woke up on the morning of the race, things did not look good. A look out the window confirmed my fears: It was snowing in Alpine, with wet — and probably icy — roads.

I left the bikes in the truck, though, hoping against hope that the race venue would be dry.

Last-Moment Announcement

We arrived at the venue (Mountain View High School, right by the Orem Rec Center for the locals reading this) and I started to have hope. Apparently being ten miles further south, a couple hundred feet lower and not bumping right up against a mountain makes a difference: it was not snowing and the roads were dry.

But it was definitely windy and cold.

Others were setting up their bikes in the transition area, so we went and set ours up too. One transition area would be used for both transitions, so the setup took only a few minutes.

I was feeling chipper. The harder the bike portion of the race, the better for me.

Then, just a few minutes before it was time to start, the race director made a crazy announcement: “We’re concerned enough about wet roads on part of the course, as well as the probability of snow falling during the race, so we’re shortening the bike portion of the race,” he said.

“Shortening it,” he concluded, “to one lap around the high school parking lot.”

Whhhaaaaa? That’s less than a quarter mile!

I walked up to the race director to make sure I had understood him correctly. He explained that for safety reasons they didn’t want to have the bike race, but they still wanted people who had been working on their transitions to get to do those.

“OK,” I said, “Fair enough.” This didn’t make sense to me at all, but the fact is I’m too much of a lazy coward to ever be a race director and so have made a pact to myself to never ever hassle or otherwise give a hard time to people who are willing to go through the massive effort (including making the hard-to-call last minute decisions) it takes to put on a race.

“So,” I thought to myself, as The Hammer, The Swimmer and I walked to the starting line of the run (the events are would be in Run – “Bike” – Swim order for this event, which makes sense since the swim is in an indoor pool), “This changes things for me.”

And I started to think.

The first wave went — Kids (but The Swimmer stayed with us because chip timing meant that it doesn’t really matter when anyone starts and we wanted to all start together). A few minutes elapsed, and the second wave went. Ours was next.

Then it occurred to me.

“Don’t change into your biking shoes for the biking leg,” I quickly told The Hammer. “It’s not worth it for that short of a ride. Just leave your running shoes on, put your helmet on and go.”

The Run

And then we were off. The Swimmer took off at what would be, for me, a sprint. Indeed, she was hanging with the fast guys.

“Well, that’s it for me,” I thought. “Best thing I can do is try to limit the damage.” So I ran hard, doing my best to at least stay with The Hammer.

“I can’t believe The Swimmer is running so fast,” I said to The Hammer. “I could never hold that pace over 5K.”

“Neither can she,” replied The Hammer, as she eased in front of me.

And so, for the entirety of the run, I thought of one thing: try not to let The Hammer get too far ahead. Before long, though, she was fifty feet, then a hundred feet ahead of me. Then fifty yards. Then 75.

The road turned downhill, and I could see that The Hammer was catching The Swimmer. They were now running together. Then I started catching up a little, too. Maybe I got to within fifty yards.

The road turned uphill.

The Hammer passed The Swimmer and started putting distance on me. I resolved not to let her out of my sight, no matter how badly it hurt.

The Swimmer pulled off to the side and started walking, gasping for air.

The Hammer had been right.

I passed The Swimmer and gave a little wave, but didn’t say anything. I had no air for words — I was genuinely at my aerobic max.

For the rest of the run, I kept my eyes locked on The Hammer, trying to give up no more time than I already had.

I didn’t look back, but expected that at any moment The Swimmer would re-pass me.

The “Bike”

Somehow I stayed ahead of The Swimmer and ran into the transition area in second place — not for the whole event, but for our little family competition, which is the one that matters.

I got to our stuff, right as The Hammer was pulling out. “So,” I thought, “She’s exactly one transition ahead of me.”

I put on my helmet and otherwise made no other changes. I grabbed my bike, then stumbled the first time I tried to swing a leg over; my legs weren’t used to trying to get on a bike after a run.

Then I managed to get on the bike and rode around the parking lot, feeling a little bit foolish and not knowing whether I should pour on the gas or just parade around. I went with something in-between.

I noticed the rider in front of me was wearing his bike shoes. I allowed myself a moment of smugness.

I pulled back into the bike corral, ready to transition for the swim.

The Bike-to-Swim Transition

Ordinarily I wouldn’t give a transition a lot of time in a race report, but in this case I have to, because it’s pivotal.

I got to where our stuff was set up…and The Hammer was still there, changing. “I can’t get this stupid stuff off!” she yelled.

“Sorry,” I said, as I began stripping down as fast as I could. Helmet and cap came off in one motion. I pulled the first glove off with my teeth and the second using my hands.

I tugged down on my jersey zipper while simultaneously kicking off my shoes.

And this is where the crucial, race-changing moment happens: the removal of the tights.

Here, you should take a quick look at the photo I put at the beginning of this story. Pay close attention to the tights that The Hammer and I are wearing:

IMG_3782 - Version 2.jpg

The difference? Hers are tight, mine are loose. Really, mine are closer to track pants than tights.

And they come off a lot faster and easier than tights, which have to be peeled.

And in short (in a swimsuit, actually), I got out of the bike-to-swim transition while The Hammer was still there.

As I ran toward the pool, I saw The Swimmer pull in to the transition area, just finishing her run.

Suddenly, I had a prayer of winning again.

As I got about to the midway point between the transition area and the pool, I realized I had forgotten my goggles. I stopped short, thinking of returning to get them.

“And give up this tiny advantage I just picked up? No way. I’ll deal without goggles,” I thought.

The Swim

The way the swim works is you’re supposed to swim a length of the pool, duck into the next lane, and swim back. So you’re “snaking” your way across the pool, keeping the traffic to a minimum, and keeping track of how many lengths you’ve swum.

Like this:


My illustration abilities are really quite spectacular, don’t you think?

Anyway, the swim itself. It was a 350-meter madhouse. A fistfight disguised as a swim race. And it was compounded by the fact that we had caught up with a lot of the people who had left in the two waves ahead of us, some of whom were wading instead of swimming.

At one point, I was completely boxed in, unable to move, because the person I was behind had stopped and was standing still in the pool, while others swam around us, not leaving me an opening to get back in.

Eventually, though, I finished the first six lengths of the pool (300 meters), and ducked under the last lane marker, ready to do the final 50 meters of the race.

Then, for some reason, after I ducked under the lane marker and came up, I looked over at the person to my side.

It was The Hammer. She had caught me.

Here we were, at the final 50 meters of the race. At the exact same place.

I smiled. She smiled.

And then I kicked off the wall as hard as I possibly could and swam as if my life depended on it.

For once, there weren’t a lot of obstacles in front of me; I was able to swim unobstructed.

I got to the end of the pool, pulled myself out, and stepped across the finish line, not knowing whether I had just beaten — or been beaten by — The Hammer.

Two seconds later, The Hammer stepped across the line.

Thanks to a pair of loose-fitting tights, I had just won the Turkey Tri.

The Hammer and I laughed, we hugged, and then we immediately started speculating on how long it would be until The Swimmer would be finishing.

We didn’t have long to speculate, though, because — in what I am pretty sure was less than a minute — The Swimmer joined us.

Incredibly, she had done all of the bike ride, the transition, and the swim in the same amount of time it took me to do the swim.

My guess is she probably did all seven lengths of the pool in the time it took me to do two lengths.

That girl is an animal in the pool. I’ll be very interested to see what her final split times look like.


We all were curious how we did in our respective age groups, so we hung around for the awards. While we did, I suggested we climb on the podium to get a photo of how the most important division had worked out.

The Swimmer did not want to.

“That’s OK,” I said, “I’ve got your homecoming pictures and Photoshop.”



Eventually, though, we harangued her into joining us on the podium for a real photo:

IMG_3789 - Version 2.jpg

Gee, I wonder why teenagers don’t like to hang around with grownups.

Anyway, it was a good thing we stuck around, because look who took first in her age division (15 and under women):


Such a nice smile, when she wants to.

And her mom didn’t do half-bad, either: second in her division!


And me? Well, I took third in my division:


Oh, wait, I didn’t do a very good job with the cropping there, did I? Let me try that again:


The whole rest of the day, I’d pay the price for my forgetting-the-goggles mistake:

IMG_3786 - Version 2.jpg
Sorry to startle you with that photo, by the way. (Hey, wanna have a staring contest?)

But it was worth it. I got on the podium for my age group — a rare thing for me, especially considering I didn’t get to do the event I’m good at.

And even more importantly, I now have Turkey Tri bragging rights for a whole year.

Buy My Book, Fight Cancer, Win a Dream Bike

11.3.2011 | 10:53 am

201111030640.jpgUpdate: The contest is over; the order form is now down.

Maybe it’s time I admit I have a problem.

I have this plan, see? And it’s a good plan: take my best work from the first two years of this blog, then add a bunch of fun new stuff to it: absurd footnotes, details about the inspiration for each of the posts, new organization, and a hilarious set of forewords from the core team. Get an awesome designer to lay it out and create a cover for me, get a terrific editor to edit it for me, and I’ve got a book. (Click here to learn more about Comedian Mastermind.)

Then I start pre-orders for that book, with the plan to use the proceeds to finance my dream: research and write The Cancer Caretaker’s Companion, a book project that’s going to require my full-time attention for several months.

Even more importantly, this book will be my foot in the door when I try to get a mainstream publisher to take note of The Cancer Caretaker’s Companion. “Look,” I’ll say, impressively, as I produce spreadsheets and bar charts and pie graphs. “Using nothing but my own bare hands” (and here I’ll show my bare hands to emphasize the point) “I wrote and published a book that sold pretty darned well. And that was just a comedy book, to be read for entertainment.”

“Imagine,” I’ll conclude, in a hushed, dramatic voice, “how many books I’d sell if my book were in actual bookstores and were marketed by people who market things for a living.”

In my imagination, at this point, the publisher swoons and my agent stands up, applauding wildly — while simultaneously wiping a tear from his eye.

So far, so good, right? But that’s where things go wrong for me.

“Why just sell a book?” I say to myself. “Everyone sells books, every day. People who come to my blog aren’t going to expect something that ordinary.”

“Why not,” I reason to myself, “make things a little more interesting? As in, give people a little nudge toward buying my book, just in case they’re on the fence? Add a little incentive, as it were.”

By the way, I say this to myself in a calculating, wily voice. The voice Otto from A Fish Called Wanda might use. Except more sincere, and less likely to torture you.

Buy My Book, Win a Dream Bike

Once I finished talking to myself (try to think of this habit as a charming idiosyncrasy, rather than as a sign of mental illness, thanks), I made a couple of calls.

First, I called my friend Chuck Ibis, shown here looking as startled as I am bewildered:


“Chuck,” I said, “I’d really love to give away a sexy, high-end bike to a random person who buys my book.”

“The Ibis Silk SL is sexy,” Chuck replied.

And you know what? Chuck’s right. Check it out:


The winner of the bike will get to choose either Siberian White, or Matt Matte. Let’s take a look at some of the frame details, because Ibis has stepped up its graphics game in a huge way lately. Here’s Siberian White:


And here’s Matt Matte:


201111030905.jpgBut don’t look at the components on that Matt Matte bike up there, because they’re all wrong. The winner of this bike is gonna get something quite a bit sweeter, because the next call I made was to Dustin Brady.

You know, the marketing guy at Shimano who inspired everyone with his incredible determination to fulfill a promise.

“Dustin,” I said, “Chuck’s helping me out with a super-sweet Ibis frame. I’d like to turn this awesome bike into a full-on dream bike.

“That sounds like a problem a nice Shimano Dura-Ace build will solve,” Dustin replied.

“Wwwwhaaa?” I replied, because I was just getting ready to start my spiel on what I wanted to do and what I wanted him to give me (I was going to ask for an Ultegra build).

“Yeah,” said Dustin. “If it’s a dream bike, it’s gotta have Dura-Ace. Components and wheels.”

I admit, I had to sit down. Then I asked, “Full-on Dura-Ace? Shimano’s top-of-the line road components, top to bottom?


“Yeah,” said Dustin. “Let’s go with the C35 clinchers for this bike’s wheels, OK?”


“OK,” I said. “If you say so.”

How it Works

So, this is really pretty simple. If you’d like a chance at winning an Ibis Silk SL with Shimano Dura-Ace components and wheels, buy a book (or more than one) during the pre-order period, which ends a week from today (the order form’s a little further down this post).

For every buck you spend (rounded up and including money you spend on shipping) on buying my book, you get a row on my magical spreadsheet. So if you buy one book at the “I Need a Serious Bargain” price of $9.95 + $3.00 shipping, you get thirteen rows on my spreadsheet. If you buy a book at the “I Like Fatty” price of $19.95 + $3.00 shipping, you get 23 rows on my spreadsheet.

And if you buy 719 copies at the “I REALLY Love Fatty” price of $39.95, you get 28,728 rows on my spreadsheet.

And of course, even if you don’t win the bike, you still bought the book, which will arrive in time for Christmas (in fact, it should arrive in time for you to ship it elsewhere and still have it arrive by Christmas). But wrapping is up to you.

I’ll choose the winner randomly November 10 at midnight, Mountain Time, and will notify her or him by email.

But What If You Already Bought a Book?

Of course, if you already bought a book before I ever even announced this contest, your past purchase counts toward the contest too.

Cuz if it didn’t, that would totally suck.

How to Order

As always, I’m letting you select how much you want to pay for this book (though I’ve changed the name of one of the options). You can get more details about that here.

I have added a new price option, called “I Need a Bargain,” for $11.95, so that — with shipping — your total outlay for the book is under $15.00.

This option’s essentially like the “I Need a SERIOUS Bargain” option, except I was worried that people weren’t choosing the $9.95 option because they didn’t like the idea of me not getting a cut. With the $11.95 option, you can rest easy, knowing that you’ve got a great deal while still contributing a couple of bucks toward my Cancer Caretaker’s Companion project.

So, choose your option below, click Add to Cart, and then complete the sale at Paypal.

Thanks tons. I hope you enjoy this book. . .and I hope you win the bike, too.

Story Problem

11.1.2011 | 5:24 pm

A Non-Book-Related Note from Fatty: Don’t worry, this whole post isn’t just about book stuff. Just stick with me for a few minutes while I take care of business.

201111011247.jpgA Book-Related Note from Fatty: First off, thanks to those of you who have bought a book (and extra thanks to those of you who have bought more than one!). I really appreciate it. This has been a lot of work, so I love seeing that folks are interested in owning a copy.

I have to say, though, I’m a little bit surprised at a couple things:

1. Not very many people have taken advantage of the “I’m Nearly Broke” option, where you can get a copy of this book for $9.95. I think maybe I made it seem like it’s an option you should take only as a last resort, like if you’re choosing between buying a book and paying the bills.

That’s not what I want at all.

The truth is, one of main things I want out of this first book is bragging rights. Specifically, I want to be able to say, “I sold thousands of books.”

So, if you’ve got $13 to spare (that’s how much the book will cost you after shipping) and you’d like to have this book, don’t be embarrassed to go with this bargain option. You’re still helping me accomplish an important step toward getting serious attention for my future projects.

2. Not very many people have taken advantage of the “Standard” price. I’m a little bit amazed at the fact that more people have paid the $39.95 price for this book than for the $19.95 price for it. That’s crazy-generous of you people. But don’t feel like you have to order one of the pricier versions of the book. As it’s easy to tell, this book is costing me about $10 per copy (between the book itself, shipping, and paying people who are helping me edit, design, and do layout for this book).

Which means that when you pay the $19.95 price, I’m clearing about $10 / copy. For books, that’s really, really good.

So, in short, if you’d like a copy of Comedian Mastermind — and I really hope you will want a copy, because honestly I’m pretty darned proud of it and think that if you like this blog you’ll really like this book — don’t feel pressured into buying the $30 or $40 version of the book.

I appreciate you taking the time and spending the money, no matter what.

But What About a Kindle Version?

Lots of people commented yesterday, wondering if there will be a Kindle version of Comedian MasterMind. The answer is, yes. But I’m not worrying about it until I get the paper version of the book out the door. My objective right now is to get the paper version finished and in everyone’s hands — with time to spare — before Christmas.

Once that’s done, I’ll learn how to Kindle-fy it, and maybe Nookitize it, too.

Story Problem

I’ve got a race this weekend. An important race.

It’s the…Turkey Triathlon.


Yes, really.

It’s a short little thing: 5K run, 10 mile road bike ride, and a 350 meter swim. In that order, which is kind of weird. And, as I have mentioned, this is a very important race.

A race I must win.

No, I’m saying I need to be the guy who beats everyone in this race. I couldn’t care less about whether some fast tri guy manages to clean my clock. In fact, I expect that to happen.

What matters is that I beat two particular people. These two:

IMG_1280 - Version 2.jpg

I think you’ve met the one on the left, though it’s possible you’ve never seen a photo of her on this site without glasses and either a helmet or a ponytail.

She is the woman known — and feared — far and wide as “The Hammer.”

The one on the right — who is actually not taller than the one on the left, but is wearing heels (The Hammer does not wear heels, ever, out of kindness to me) — is The Swimmer.

There’s definitely a “Like Mother, Like Daughter” thing going on with these two. Both are very beautiful, both are very strong athletes, and — most importantly — both of them have a decent chance at beating me in the Turkey Tri this weekend.

It’s been the topic of considerable discussion among the three of us for several months. To the point of this race being approximately three thousand times more important to me than when — as a joke, really — we signed up for the thing.

A good case can be made for why each of us might win. I shall now present those cases.

The Case for Fatty

Let’s start with me first. You all pretty much know my strengths and weaknesses, but let’s review:

  • Run: Thanks to The Hammer, I have made progress in running, to the point where I have gone from being a total non-runner to being a runner who can plod along slowly and clumsily for a great distance. For example, last Saturday The Hammer and I ran five miles before we ran a half marathon — in costume. Here we are:
    The problem — and this is strictly a problem for me, not for The Hammer — is that I am much, much slower of a runner than The Hammer. By the time we got to the last five miles of the half-marathon, she could no longer bear to go at my pace and shot forward, disappearing over the horizon within one minute. I am not exaggerating.
  • Bike: I am the fastest cyclist of the three of us.
  • Swim: In open-water swims (St. George Ironman, Ogden Xterra), I am a faster swimmer than The Hammer. In the pool, she is faster than I am. For the Turkey Tri, we will be in a pool.

Why I could win: I expect that I will drop behind The Swimmer and The Hammer in the run, but I expect to make a fast transition to the bike, thanks to my planned strategy of yanking off my running shoes, pulling on my biking shoes, and then quickly twisting the knobs on my high-zoot Boa Closure System.

Once on the bike, I hope to make up ground quickly, and then startle them both with a “Yawp!” as I ride by.

If I give it everything I’ve got, I will be so far ahead by the time we get to the swim that it won’t matter that I am slower in the pool than The Hammer, and much, much slower than The Swimmer.

The Case for The Swimmer

In addition to having youth on her side, The Swimmer is also strong in two sports. Here is why she might win:

  • Run: Over a short distance, during the couple of times she has run with The Hammer and me, The Swimmer has demonstrated that she is faster than either of us. And 5K is definitely a short distance. The Swimmer is very likely to finish this leg first.
  • Bike: The Swimmer will do a very fast transition because she will not be changing shoes; she does not ride clipless. However, that’s about as much as can be said for her on the bike. She needs to hope she makes enough time in the other two events that The Hammer and I don’t overwhelm her on the bike.
  • Swim: The Swimmer is not just a good swimmer, she’s on the varsity swim team. She’s a ridiculously good swimmer. If The Hammer and / or I have not finished at least 50% of the swim by the time The Swimmer gets in the pool, she is guaranteed to overtake us and win easily.

Why The Swimmer could win: While I am very strong in one event, The Swimmer is very strong in two events. All she has to do is limit her loss on the bike and she’s golden.

The Case for The Hammer

Behold The Mighty Hammer. Whereas I’m good at one event, and The Swimmer is good at two events, The Hammer is good at all three events. Here is why she might win:

  • Run: Before she was ever known as The Hammer, she was The Runner. And she still is. Think of “Hammer” as a superset of “Runner.” I think it’s likely The Hammer will either enter the transition area with, slightly behind, or slightly ahead of The Swimmer. Those two will be close.
  • Bike: The Hammer hangs with me, no problem, on the bike. Depending on how fast she is in the run, she’ll either finish with me or slightly ahead of me on the bike.
  • Swim: While she claims to be very non-competitive, The Hammer’s game face gives her away. When she races, she’s racing. If she gets in the water ahead of me — which is highly probable — she’ll finish ahead of me.

Why The Hammer could win: The fact that the Hammer is not the weakest in any of the events makes her a very strong candidate for winning the whole thing.

What’s At Stake?

You mean aside from bragging rights? Nothing. Nothing at all.

But when you think about it, are there many things in the world worth more than bragging rights?

Yeah, that’s what I thought.

Your Take

I am interested in your predictions for who will win, as well as your analysis of why. If you need additional details, please feel free to ask; if I have time, I’ll supply an answer.

I look forward to seeing who is right.

Update for Extra Credit

I just got an email from the organizers with this information:

The weather is not looking great for Saturday. In the ten years of the Turkey Tri’s existence, we have never had to make a course change. However, there’s a potential this year. The race will be modified to a run-swim, if the course is determined to be unsafe due to weather related issues. These modifications will be made to ensure the safety of our participants. We’re hoping to keep our streak alive by not having to change the course. Lets hope it stays dry.


So the extra credit question is:

If the course is in fact modified to eliminate the one part of the race I am good at, exactly how badly will I lose?

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