Category Archives: ASHACKC

During the summer of 2010, I spent eight weeks in London interning at a sports website. I had to write articles about different, lesser-known sports. I wrote about parkour, rollerskiing and a bunch of different sports, but my favorite would have to be landyachting.

No, not lady aching, as some people probably read that. I don’t even know what lady aching would be, but I probably don’t want to know.

Landyachting is basically a combination of sailing and go-karting. It’s more physical than either sailing or go-karting, mostly because you have to control the landyacht with your hands and your feet. At first it’s a little tough. You have to steer with your feet, but you increase or decrease speed by releasing or pulling on the rope for the sail. It’s a little bit like windsurfing, but not really.

You can definitely gain some speed when you participate. The expert that I went to for my lesson had a record speed of 86.4 mph. Imagine that wind wiping through your hair, or what will probably be more accurate, detaching your hair.

The day that I went landyachting, it was rainy and cold (basically a regular day in London in May) and had on the lamest fleece ever. I was freezing the entire time, but it was awesome.

Though it is a beach sport (preferably wet so you get more speed), you can do it in parking lots, but where’s the fun in that?

The sport is popular in England, which apparently is the weird sport capital of the world (Gloucestershire cheese rolling? Really?) There are numerous clubs in England and some in France, as well. There is even a British Federation of Sand and Land Yachts.

Legit.

I think I smell a new Olympic sport.

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IU vs. UK, season turning point

Silence fell when the second free throw went in. Only 5.9 seconds remained in the game that no one truly believed IU could win. Verdell Jones dribbled the ball down the court and found Christian Watford for a last second three-pointer. Silence and then pure excitement.

IU had beaten rival No. 1 Kentucky at Assembly Hall. Fans rushed the court and went nuts. Nick’s English Hut was completely packed and completely insane after the basket. 

This was the win the Hoosiers had been searching for since Tom Crean said “It’s Indiana.” This was the win that proved Indiana was back. This was the win that got the students and fans excited about IU basketball again.

The win happened in what seemed to be a perfectly fitting way. It was dramatic, stressful and exhilarating.

It was the turning point. People immediately started saying “we’re back.” Back to where we rightfully belong, in the national rankings. Pat Forde said “college basketball is better when Indiana is good.”

Jacob Rude wrote for Bleacher Report on Dec. 12, 2011,  “Watford finally gave IU fans a moment they’ve been long overdue for. He gave IU a moment of glory, a moment of nostalgia from the past and a glimpse of the future. But most importantly, he gave Tom Crean, Indiana basketball and IU fans across the globe a moment to celebrate what they’d long missed and what they most deserved.”

The win showed what the team was made of and how they have grown in the past three seasons under Crean. It showed that IU is ready to win and to win against the best teams. That was proven when IU beat then No.2-ranked Ohio State on Dec. 31, 2011.

The Kentucky game was more than a win for IU, it was a return to where the basketball program is meant to be.

Let the parties begin

Since the Super Bowl village opened in Indy on Jan. 27, there have been parties on parties happening around the Circle City.

The Indianapolis Star compiled a listing of all the party happenings around town and there has definitely not been a shortage of big-name performers.

The festivities started on Jan. 26, but they got bigger when the calendar hit February. Jimmy Fallon did a taping of his show and the Univision Pepsi Musica Super Bowl Fan Jam featuring Don Omar happened on the 1st. For those of you not familiar with Don Omar, watch “Fast Five” and then proceed to have “Danza Kuduro” stuck in your head for the next five months.

On Feb.2, there were approximately 15 million concerts (or just 10, but who’s counting). Adam Levine, Snoop Dogg, Wiz Khalifa, and B.o.B were just a few of the performers that night. Plus, let’s not forget the EA Sports Madden Bowl XVIII or the Tazon Latino VI Celebrity Flag Football Game featuring Deion Sanders.

The rest of the weekend was full of parties and concerts. On Feb. 3, ESPN hosted its “Next” party featuring a performance from my future husband (just kidding, but seriously) Drake.

The 4th also featured a ton of stars rockin’ out. DirecTV Super Saturday Night had Katy Perry performing, and whether you like her or not, she has some pretty catchy songs (“Last Friday Night,” anyone?). The Rolling Stone-Bacardi party featured LMFAO, Lupe Fiasco, Gym Class Heroes and Cobra Starship. Lil’ Jon and Pitbull performed at the Bud Light concert.

LMFAO. Photo by Alex Farris.

Apparently, KC and the Sunshine Band performed as well, and I’m going to be honest, I wasn’t completely sure all the members were still together, let alone alive. But who doesn’t love “(Shake, Shake, Shake) Shake Your Booty”?

And of course all of these shindigs have been leading up to the actual game (which kicks off at 6:29 and not 6:30 #dontgetmestarted) and the halftime show by Madonna. I know some people are disappointed with Madonna being the halftime show, but as long as she plays some of her classic 80s hits, I’ll be a happy camper.

Where my ladies at?

When the US does well in international sporting events, the country takes notice.

When the Women’s US Soccer team made it to the Women’s World Cup finals, the country rallied behind them. Now, the US isn’t exactly a soccer country, as in it’s not at all. Though it’s the most popular sport in the world, most people’s interest in the sport ends when they stop playing it as a child.

However, when the women made a terrific run in the 2011 Women’s World Cup, it made national headlines. People were actually able to name players on the team. Let’s be honest, that hasn’t happened since the 1999 World Cup and Brandi Chastain’s infamous stripping of her jersey (scandalousss!)

Hope Solo became a celebrity. Cities all over proudly claimed players as their own (Lauren Cheney and Lori Lindsey are from Indy, just sayin’).

The world of social media exploded. Twitter was blowing up about the shootout between Japan and the US. Globally, tweeters posted 7,196 tweets per second, making it the third most tweeted about event in 2011. It didn’t beat out Beyonce’s baby news, but who’s surprised there? (Beyonce had a baby. Beyonce had a baby!)

The AP ranked it as the 10th top sports story of 2011. It certainly was one of the most dramatic sporting events of the year. A shootout in a World Cup final? That’s the kind of scenario sports fans both revel in and curse at.

Matches like the 2011 WWC final create support and excitement for women’s sports.

Ryan Yoder, a writer for Awful Announcing, wrote “the Women’s World Cup showed this country will support soccer at the highest level, no matter the gender.”

Now, let’s hope the support continues on with the 2012 Olympics.