Saturday, June 29, 2013

Baltimore Sun: "Michael Phelps has no plans to return to competitive swimming" - Lochte is suspicious!

Rival and reality TV star Ryan Lochte jumps in with a prediction like a weatherman telling you for sure it's going to rain.

From the Baltimore Sun:

"...Man, people will believe anything that's written, anything that's on TV," Phelps said. "There's nothing in the works with me coming back to swimming. This is a part of my life I'm enjoying. I've never had freedom like this. I live on my own time. I play golf three or four times a week. I wake up whenever I want. I have a few things to do here and there, but mostly my time is mine. I'm not thinking about changing that.."


Friday, June 28, 2013

France 24: "Iran swimmer’s time goes unrecorded: “Her bathing suit was too revealing” - Perhaps 13-pounds worth of garments wasn't enough?

This swimmer was layered with clothes. So much so that if I wore as many garments in an open water swim as she does I would be sincerely worried about the drowning risk for Elham Sadat Asghari is wearing more than 13-pounds worth of swimming attire.

This post has nothing to do with Muslim values or modest swimsuits for thousands of Iranians; presumably most of whom are Muslims, are supporting her Iranian record.

From France 24:
Her problems began in 2010, when she decided to swim around Kish island in three days. A representative for the sports ministry came to watch. Elham had only swum 5 kilometres when out of nowhere, police boats rammed into her and those accompanying her. The shock seriously hurt one of her legs, and her hip was lacerated by boat propellers. [FRANCE 24 could not independently verify these claims.] If her father hadn’t helped her, she surely would have drowned.

After this, Elham was in a bad place. Her injuries healed, but emotionally, she was a mess. She decided to say goodbye to swimming. But those of us close to her encouraged her to swim again. After undergoing therapy, she began to practice anew. For a long time, she swam 5 kilometres every night and ran 12 kilometres every day.


Monday, June 24, 2013

San Diego: Suspect arrested after all-night swim to avoid Coronado police

Running from the police is really stupid but swimming from the police is totally absurd especially if you are blazing on some drug. I bet it was meth'?

From the  L.A. Times:
Soon officers, divers, police dogs and a helicopter were deployed. Still, the man kept swimming, initially heading south toward Silver Strand Beach, two miles away, before reversing course. 
All night and early into the morning, the suspect swam, stopping occasionally to hurl an epithet at the officers, authorities said. 

SCIENCE DAILY: An ahlete's ability to manage goals, as well as his skill, determination & motivation makes a successful athlete.

According to new research by UK universities Birmingham and Southampton and funded by the Economic and Social Research Council:

“Our experiments showed the importance of a person realising early enough when it was better to continue striving for a goal or when it was best to let go and adopt another similar goal,” said Professor Nikos Ntoumanis, an exercise and sport psychologist from the University of Birmingham. “Our research also showed that the reasons behind a sportsperson’s goal are important to know, not just the actual goal.” 

The article uses professional tennis player Andy Murray as an example but this study applies to most athletes since athletics is summarily goal-based.                                                                      

Example: most swimmers won't make it into the Olympic Games or go pro since only two athletes are chosen nationally but many athletes may be able to get a scholarship to college. (That in my opinion is a better option). Most swimmers may not be able to make it to Olympic trials but they can win some races or better their times. (I fall in the 'try to better my times' category). Some swimmers may be that swimmer who always places fourth, fifth, or last, but perhaps the commraderie or the social aspect of swimming provides lifelong friends, discipline and follow-through or a social network that can be leveraged into a better life.

There is also lifeguarding opportunities, coaching, or perhaps starting your own club.

The crus of the study is to let go of the concept failure and make your swim goals more fluid and real.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Digital life saving device: A Swimband transmits an ultrasonic signal to a computer that alerts lifeguards that a swimmer has been submerged too long...

New divice alerts lifeguards with audiovisual signals or sirens if a potential victim has been submerged longer than 20-seconds. Welcome to the age of analytics...

From CBS:
NEW CANAAN, Conn. (CBSNewYork) – A Connecticut town has installed a cutting edge swimmer protection system at one of its very popular swimming holes.

As WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau reported, officials in New Canaan became the first municipality to implement a high-tech second layer of protection for swimmers.


I went to the company website and I was impressed. See the video above. Here is a link to the Wahooo Sensor product site with some information on how it works:
The Wahooo Sensor is a highly sophisticated microcomputer that measures time of submersion down to 1/1000th of a second. The Sensor determines the critical moment in time when a submerged swimmer is at risk of drowning—before the event is allowed to escalate.

The system generates two types of alerts: First, when a swimmer is submerged for a preset period of time (considered by experts to be "precarious") a discreet Yellow Alert serves as initial notification of a potential event. If the swimmer remains submerged for an additional preset period of time (considered to be "at risk" by experts), a more urgent Red Alert is indicated. Each and every time, staff is aware of the situation. A situation that otherwise could have been missed with tragic results.

The Wahooo SMS accurately and reliably alerts your staff to the risk of a possible drowning rather than indicating a drowning already taking place. When seconds are the difference between life and death, this can mean everything in preventing an event from escalating into a tragedy.


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Big air on Bali wave - Yahoo billing it as the "...greatest surf trick of all time"

There was a time when skateboarding emulated surfing. Alas, it is now the other way around now. Surfer John Florence has pulled of a a "big air" move that some are calling the greatest trick ever.

Surfing as an apparel phenomena is circling the drain.Perhaps that is why skateboarding is being embraced.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Coach Bill Jewell gets 3-year ban form USA Swimming!

Contents of the letter that Susan Woessner sent regarding Bill Jewell's 3-year ban. ...

Richard Pierson, General Chair
Mary Jo Swalley, Membership and Registration
Jeri Marshburn, Safe Sport Southern California Swimming

Mark Schubert, Head Coach
Patrick Gillespie, Board President
Golden West Swim Club
Re: Bill Jewell

18 June 2013

Dear Richard, Mary Jo, Jeri, Mark, and Patrick:

This letter is to inform you that on Monday, June 10, USA Swimming member coach Bill Jewell waived his right to a National Board of Review hearing and accepted a three-year membership ban, effective immediately, as requested by USA Swimming for violations of the USA Swimming Code of Conduct. USA Swimming’s case against Mr. Jewell was based on a pattern of inappropriate behavior, including making sexually explicit comments toward athletes and other individuals affiliated with the club. There was no allegation of or evidence to support inappropriate sexual touching.

If you need assistance now or in the future with communications to your Golden West Swim Club membership or your local media, please let me know and we will connect you with USA Swimming communications staff.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.


Susan Woessner Director of Safe Sport

c: Bill Jewell

Chuck Wielgus, Executive Director

John Morse, General Counsel Lucinda McRoberts, Esq. Elizabeth Hoendervoogt, Safe Sport Coordinator

Friday, June 14, 2013

Japanese pop culture adopts swimming - KyoAni Streams "Free!" a slice of life Anime with lots of Swimming.

Swimming is HUGE is Asia. The future of this sprt and what suits we wear will be determined there in the coming years. Unlike here, the sport has been adopted by their popular culture artists.

Free! is a slice-of-life anime form Japan with lots of swimming, cheesecake images of shirtless boys, and a soap opera story-line about two friends becoming competitors.

There will be a sub titled version eventually put up on YouTube

From Anime News Network:
"...The anime's story revolves around Haruka when he is in high school. After years of separation, his childhood friend Rin challenges him to a swimming match, showing Haruka his overwhelming power. Not wanting it to end like this, Haruka gathers together Makoto and Nagisa once again, and also brings a new member named Rei Ryugazaki to create the Iwatobi High School Swimming Club. Haruka, Makoto, Nagisa, Rei, and Rin come together for a story of swimming, youth, and friendship...." 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

The Mitch Ivey sex abuse victim interviewed at Swim Swam!

Everything you do and everything you say has a consequence. There is plenty of poetry, songs, and
philosophical verses that have said the same thing only way better than I can and with more emphasis on the consequences part.

I read the Ceci Christy article at SwimSwam with great anticipation and by the fourth paragraph that anticipation soured into a severe disappointment.

Christy interviews Suzette Moran who at 16-years-of-age had an ongoing sexual relationship with her 33-year-old swim coach, Mitch Ivey, and as of today asserts that it was a consensual relationship and that Moran "...did know what she was doing... That she does not see herself as a victim... And never felt she should report their sexual relationship..."

Proverbial mouth drop and a face palm.

Snippets from SwimSwim:
But, Ms. Moran is adamant that she did know what she was doing. Seven months into the affair, she moved to Concord Pleasant Hill Swim Club where Mr. Ivey coached and continued their relationship. From the beginning, their affair was “fully consensual,” and she “never felt forced to do anything. 
Ms. Moran holds herself completely accountable for her actions and does not see herself as a victim. She says she never felt she should report their sexual relationship.” 
But here is where the writer refuses to challenge her...
".... And, regardless of her maturity level and consent, Ms. Moran recognizes that a 33-year-old coach having sex with a 16-year-old swimmer is wrong and constitutes abuse.  
"...Ms. Moran says it is disturbing to her that USA Swimming has not tried to contact her at any point over the years. “It is clear that they made no effort to locate me. ..."  

I am the guy that made the official complaint for Moran and others like her so they could get some justice served cold to their assailant, Coach Mitch Ivey. How do you think I feel that she did not come forward to report this abuse to the cops and feels that she had a consensual relationship with a predator with no regrets?

If you accept that Ms Moran never came forward to report this abuse to the police nor USA Swimming because she did not see herself as a victim, why does she state such consternation that USA Swimming never contacted her either?

Sex has consequences for the immature: Pregnancy, disease, and the emotional fallout for those not mature enough to deal with the break-ups or otherwise. Abused boys and girls have been known to commit suicide, indulge in drug abuse, alcoholism and other risky behaviors after being sexually abused.

Presuming she had a "consensual" relationship or believed she had a "consensual" relationship was something she should have kept it to herself. This bit of information does no victim any good whatsoever and signals that perhaps she needs to reexamine this relationship with a professional in the subject.

I don't like attacking victims...

I am on the side that USA Swimming management needs a reboot and people like Berkoff and Wielgus have got to go for this same non-reporting and non-action. Ms Moran's rhetoric, if it was reported accurately, summarily states and unintentionally hints that for some girls, like herself, what she did is okay due to her "special circumstance" and believe me it is not okay. Lots of young girls read that site, and many who have "crushes" on their coaches could get in trouble thinking that their crush too is due to a "special circumstance..."

At the very least she admits the relationship existed and this alone should get him banned we hope.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Coach Mitch Ivey, you're finally busted! - "Suzette Moran confirms intimate relationship with former Olympic swim coach Mitch Ivey starting when she 16-years-old"

I filed this complaint against Mitch Ivey on April 5th 2011.

More on that later. Was sent this press release minutes ago:

Suzette Moran confirms that she had an intimate relationship with former Olympic swim coach Mitch Ivey starting when she 16 and that USA Swimming has never contacted her.

SAN JOSE, CA – June 10, 2013 -- Attorney Robert Allard and a former 16 year old swimmer who had an intimate relationship with former Olympic coach Mitch Ivey are calling on Congress to investigate USA Swimming as a result of its failure to investigate and protect swimmers from predators. Allard has learned that the USA Swimming investigation of Mitch Ivey was quietly closed nearly one year ago with no action taken against the coach due to "inconclusive evidence".

According to Nancy Hogshead-Makar, Senior Director of Advocacy, Women’s Sports Foundation and Professor of Law, Florida Coastal School of Law, she provided the names of people that would be helpful in the investigation of Ivey, including Suzette Moran to a USA Swimming investigator in 2011.

Suzette Moran, then 16 years old when she started having a sexual relationship with Ivey, recently confirmed that USA Swimming never contacted her either for this investigation or at any time since her story went public on ESPN's "Outside the Lines" in the early 1990's.

Moran issued the following statement:

"It has come to my attention that over the past few years USA Swimming has been investigating swim coaches for misconduct. After reading articles about various coaches, it appears that USA Swimming is having a difficult time understanding how to conduct comprehensive investigations. I was recently advised that they have cleared Mitch Ivey from any inappropriate actions. It seems that once again they have overlooked several pieces of evidence.

USA Swimming has never contacted me in regards to their investigation of Mitch Ivey. While I do not see myself as a victim, the fact remains that I started having a relationship with Mitch Ivey at 16 and it continued for several years. The relationship was consensual, and completely open to everyone in USA Swimming, family, and friends. It crossed the world of USA Swimming with the ESPN special that I appeared in back in the early 90’s.

The fact that USA Swimming closed their file without trying to contact me is disturbing. It is reminiscent of the Catholic Church. I am very easily located via Facebook, Linkedin, Spokeo, Classmates, and my high school. ESPN found me through the UCLA Athletic Department. It is clear that they made no effort to locate me.

It saddens me that after all of the controversy, Mitch has made the choice to continue to coach, and a team has hired him. It concerns me that the entity who should be investigating and protecting swimmers from predators is still not doing their job, even after such coaches as Andy King and Rick Curl have been incarcerated.

I am publicly asking for Congress to step in and investigate USA Swimming."

Allard stated that "the leadership at USA Swimming continues to demonstrate that it is utterly incapable of resolving the glaring sexual abuse issue within its ranks." Allard pointed to a 2010 email from USA Swimming's Technical Vice President David Berkoff which identifies Ivey and Moran by name as an example of an improper sexual relationship between a coach and his minor swimmer.

"There is absolutely no excuse for USA Swimming to not interview Ms. Moran. We located her with little effort. In our view, USA Swimming’s leadership doesn’t want to know the truth because it doesn’t care about the truth. These leaders would rather boast about what have proven to us to be worthless rules and 1-800 numbers that they have developed and falsely hold themselves out as champions of sexual abuse victims. These leaders have repeatedly failed the sexual misconduct test and need to remove themselves from office. If they don’t voluntarily resign, Congress should intervene and force them to. This simply has gone on for way too long.”

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Jellyfish flame fractals I have been rendering

Building a fine project which will be printed on an unusual surface in sculpture form. Will do about 16-pieces.

I am using an open source flame fractal program that relies on heavy math calculations to render shapes and composites. I have tweaked the math in such a way to create jellyfish.

For The Win: Australian woman will attempt world-record swim from Cuba to Florida

I promise that the first person to complete this swim will be a swimmer from down under!

Per Capita both Australia and New Zealand produce the best swimmers, sailors, surfers, lifeguards, PERIOD. These guys "own" the topic of water.

The only topic Australia sucks at is literary fiction but that is a topic for a book blog. (Can you name a famous literary author from Australia? Germaine Greer does not count.)

"... [Chloe] McCardel’s team has studied Nyad’s previous attempts in hopes of avoiding some of the hazards she faced along her way.

From For the Win:

"Because it’s comparatively early in the summer, we believe that we’ve got less chance of running into box jellyfish," McCardel said. "They’ll be hanging around but we won’t be running into multitudes of them like Diana did in the past."

McCardel completed a double crossing of the English Channel in 2010 but was unable to become the first Australian to complete a triple crossing (three nonstop swims) in two previous attempts. She estimates that if all goes well, the swim will take between 55-60 hours, an amazingly long time for a person to be in constant motion. ..." 

Sunday, June 02, 2013

David Berkoff crafts more tall tales to the Missoulian Newspaper.

David Berkoff gave an interview to the Missoulian website. The bulk of the interview was essentially Berkoff explaining why he has no culpability in his failure to report Rick Curl to the police let alone USA Swimming. It also includes a full and complete admission that he was convinced Rick Curl molested Kelly Currin:

“I assumed [Rick Curl] was long gone and would never come back to the United States because his past was catching up to him. That was my suspicion. " -- David Berkoff

Note, David Berkoff is a lawyer and he admits in the above quote that he knew all about Rick Curl's past and had suspicions that Rick Curl would stay in Australia to avoid arrest. Obviously this lawyer named David Berkoff never heard of extradition nor phoning the police. Instead he was willing to wait.

The sadest thing about this interview is that he never once apologized to Kelly Currin which is very reminiscent of Chuck Wielgus refusing to apologize on the ABC News program 20/20 to the Victims in the Andrew King case.

When Berkoff was confronted by the Missoulian with his email statements he made to Jeff Chida and Mike Saltzstein about Mitch Ivey molesting swimmers and Kely Currin being molested by Rick Curl, Berkoff refuses to take full responsibility for his statements despite that all the quotes therein were printed in their full and complete context.  He belittles these emails twice by stating that Kelly Currin's pro-bono attorney, Robert Allard, "cherry picked" these emails so as to indict his character.

No David, you have indicted yourself:
“We were talking about what do we do to change USA Swimming?” he said. “(Allard) has all these emails and cherry picks the ones he thinks are damning.
The above is patently false. What Berkoff was talking about in these emails, and I read each one, was a conversation he had with Pablo Morales and Matt Biondi; (Morales has categorically denied the conversation), about how outraged he was over the Kelly Currin being molested and Mitch Ivey "banging swimmers."

On face value this an outrageous statement:
“I put these emotional emails out there, kind of shooting first and checking for bodies later, and I was asked to submit a proposal in 2010 to the board. That’s what promoted USA Swimming to adopt (enhanced) background checks, mandatory training on code of conduct and a 1-800 number to call in and report incidents.”

This proposal he submitted in 2010 was posted on the Swimming World message board and should be held up side-by-side with what I wrote on January 31, 2010 here: [Link].

Finally, Berkoff takes complete and total credit away from Susan Woessner's Safe Sport team as if he was the guiding force for both its policy and implementation. This personally disgusts me. His title at USA Swimming is Technical Vice President or something or rather and to claim he was the focal point for the implementation of such policies is a stealing credit for work he did not do. Berkoff has no subsequent child protection bullet points in his resume yet he is claiming he has some now.

From the Missoulian:

“John Leonard was on the subcommittee and told me he was opposed to an all-out ban on swimmer-coach relationships because he had married one of his former swimmers. I finally threw in the towel out of frustration because no one wanted to stand up for background checks or banning coach-swimmer relationships.”

Berkoff clarified the email on Thursday.

“We were talking about what do we do to change USA Swimming?” he said. “(Allard) has all these emails and cherry picks the ones he thinks are damning.

“I put these emotional emails out there, kind of shooting first and checking for bodies later, and I was asked to submit a proposal in 2010 to the board. That’s what promoted USA Swimming to adopt (enhanced) background checks, mandatory training on code of conduct and a 1-800 number to call in and report incidents.”


Now, if you have made it to the bottom of this blog post, do you really believe David Berkoff was the sole reason why USA Swimming has a 1-800-number to report instances of sexual abuse and conducts mandatory background checks? Could it be just a bit of outrageous bragging on his part?  (I think so too.)

I for one see him as a politician trying anemically to take credit for something way outside his expertise thereby degrading the teams who were responsible so as to further his own career.

The Disney character "Pinocchio" comes to mind.