Monday, December 31, 2012

2013

So, 2012 is coming to a close. It sure doesn't feel like a year has gone by... This uear has definitely been an exciting, full of triathlons, committee events & adventures. :D

Naturally, it is sad that the year is coming to a close. But, next year has more adventures in store!

New year's resolutions... Hmm... Well, last year's resolutions were only partly met... :\

So this year, nothing special; keep up grades, get accepted to a school in Canada, etc.

Perhaps, try a century ride before I leave Malaysia. I would also love to do the World Championship Distance for XTERRA Malaysia in April.

Just a short post this time around. Can't come up with more substantial posts at the moment. Heh heh.

On a different note, Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Which Side of the Argument is True?

In light of the recent horrific shootings in Connecticut, I've been observing some debate amongst social media users regarding gun laws in the United States.

Some are saying for people to always have their firearm loaded & on their persons, the younger the better, etc. On the other end of the spectrum, some are calling for either stricter laws or outlawing guns altogether.

In my opinion based on what I've seen in the media (which may be biased/lopsided/etc), as well as during the recent Presidential Elections, the community demanding gun laws stay is rather powerful.  It was one of the topics of debate during the elections & if I recall correctly, neither candidate did much about it.

Given the number of shootings that are happening recently, I think, no wait. I don't think, something NEEDS to be done about the gun laws.  Do I feel guns should be outlawed outright? Honestly, yes.  Is it feasible?  Probably not.  There will be resistance, issues about black market and/or illegally obtained firearms, etc.  In my opinion, each citizen should be allowed only ONE sidearm.  I say this because I'm taking into consideration that there will be those who want to own firearms for personal safety.

At the same time, the protocols and process to obtain said firearm should be strict.  Continuous psychological assessments every 2-3 months, compulsory weapons training sessions every 6 months.  On top of that, each person owning a firearm should be only allowed one full clip of ammunition.  There should be a stamp card system whereby they are only allowed to buy more after 4 months.  No stamp card, no sales.  Any purchases with the stamp card in between those 4 months should come with a hefty premium.

All these steps sounds complicated but let's face it, how many times will a person who truly buys a gun for personal protection fire their gun?  When they do, how many rounds do they actually shoot?  Not too many, I imagine.

For those that want to go hunting, yes, they can buy those but no ammunition allowed outside the shooting range and or hunting grounds.  I'm not sure how the hunting season goes but if there isn't, there should be a booth outside designated hunting grounds where hunters are allowed say 2 clips of ammunition & are required to turn in every unused round.  Extra ammunition may be bought but at a higher price & again, unused rounds returned.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Putrajaya International Triathlon 2012

So I did the Putrajaya International Triathlon last weekend.  It was a rather last minute event so not many people signed up.  Personally, I was skeptical about how well I would do as I hadn't been able to properly train for the past month or so, juggling school work, committee work and finals.

Crossing the line in an unofficial time of 2:07:11, I was pretty happy.  Seeing as I'd never done such distances back to back compounded by the lack of training, I actually performed better than I did at Desaru.  Unfortunately, the rest of the field was rather experienced and I came in around the bottom quarter. :(

My only issue with the course was the cycle route.  Why go on the highway?  Putrajaya has a very complete motorcycle lane system.  Why didn't the organizers use that?  They really should have.  On top of that, there were no signs and not enough marshals so at times, we were winging it, hoping they would place marshals at crucial exit points.  But at the most crucial point, the exit to get off the highway & back to the venue, there was no marshal.  Some riders only overshot by several meters, others went up to an additional 7km.  I got lucky because I somewhat know Putrajaya so I didn't miss the exit.  It did kill my momentum though as some of the riders confused me.  I attacked and then I braked on an uphill, completely killing all the momentum. Gah.

The organizers, however, need a lot of work. First of all, on the morning of the event, things like buoys were still being set up.  To me, that's a big no no.  Once people have arrived, important things like path markers, transition zone(s), etc should have been done and ready.  And the organizers obviously failed to implement any sort of monitoring steps or methods.  It was only at Uncle Chan's suggestion the evening before did they get things like ribbons to be given to the athletes.  Even that, they gave out ONE ribbon, and a HAIRBAND. Yes, a hairband. -,-

On top of that, the volunteers/marshals were somewhat mediocre.  The girl responsible for waving athletes to do 2 rounds was so meek & barely audible.  A number of tired athletes forgot & overshot & the girl barely did anything.  It was the supporters who shouted & reminded the athlete.  & I noticed some of the people who were running around managing the event were wearing slippers.  You're organizing a sports event & you need to run around & you wear slippers?  And it wasn't even the flipflop kind.  It was the leather, strap over the instep kind of slipper.  -______-

At the finish line, there was not enough isotonic drinks, no sort of wet towel.  They did give us fried rice but I honestly would've preferred a banana and a can of 100 Plus.

The organizers need to step up.  They were successful in securing an awesome venue, they were able to get many police marshals to help out, they had the support of Triathlon Malaysia!  So much potential.  Do that, & more people will come.