It’s that time of year again; the time when sitting on your couch all day and watching TV is a perfectly acceptable excuse for staying home. When college gear and team colors are suddenly visible everywhere – from the workplace to the grocery store. Suddenly your alma mater or favorite team has a huge following and is the talk of the town. Bandwagon jumpers start to boast and brag how they knew ‘their’ team was going to upset Duke. Ahh…March Madness – it’s a disease I’m happy to catch every Spring. The excitement, competitiveness, adrenaline and trash talking that goes on between friends, family, rivals and even strangers make the NCAA tournament a must see – even if you’re not a basketball fan.
Every March I fill out my bracket in hopes of proving I know my college basketball. Sadly, without fail, there are a string of upsets I can never predict. Bracketology isn’t a science; it’s 75% luck. Last year some of my roommates and I printed out brackets and filled in our favorite teams. Being a basketball player with strong knowledge in men’s basketball had me bragging around the house and telling the girls things like “even though Kentucky is the lower seed, they will beat Marquette. The Wildcats simply have the experience in the NCAA tourney as they’ve been a top program for years.” Wrong! I’ve learned to keep my mouth shut with my predictions until they come true. Probably because one of my roommates killed me in the West bracket last year, picking teams based on school colors, cuteness of players and academic standing of the school! Another example of why I love March Madness…
Though I’m across the pond where Euroleague basketball and football (soccer) dominate TV sport stations, I’ve been able to watch games live online through CBS Sports and ncaasports.com. Thank you Internet! It would have been an insufferable March without college basketball. If you click on the bracket below you can see how my picks have fared so far. I think UCLA is going to take home the hardware this year, but then again, it might be North Carolina because baby blue is a great color…☺On a completely different note, a couple of my teammates and I went snowmobiling Friday and it was awesome! I had never been before and it was quite the experience. Nervous at first, I decided to face my fear and drive one of the powerful machines myself. Throwing caution to the wind, I jammed down the accelerator and pretty soon was flying across the undisturbed snow of a frozen lake with tears in my eyes. What a rush! After spending the better part of 2 hours screaming and going fast we cooked hot dogs over a fire, drank hot chocolate and watched patient ice fishers hoping for a catch. It was pretty much a winter bbq that allowed me to get to know some of my teammates better.
Decked out in the team’s winter parka and my red Roots Canada tuque, the last thing I expected was to meet a Canadian on this isolated lake 30 minutes outside Sundsvall. Imagine my surprise when a tall, athletic looking blonde hair blue eyed woman asked me if I was from Vancouver. Excuse me? It amazes me the number of Canadians I’ve met (3 in Finland, 4 BC guys in Sweden) and how we can chat for hours as if we’ve known each other for some time. Lottie isn’t actually Canadian, but I consider her partial as she has lived in Whistler, Vancouver and Smithers for close to 15 years. We hit it off right away, talking about our favorite things to do in Vancouver (beach volleyball at Kitsilano, the Grouse Grind, Commercial Dr. among other things) and what we love about British Columbia. Interestingly enough, she’s a sports reporter for the Sundsvall paper and covers some of our games. I’m going to job shadow her next week to get a taste of the journalism world.
Speaking of journalism, I got an offer from a Seattle sports magazine to write an article for them when I get back. I’m extremely excited about this opportunity and can’t wait to make my mini debut! ☺
Click play above to watch a video of us snowmobiling!