think of this as my not so frequent blog..to the latest 'blah' entry.
I don't really know what to call this page. It's just a page where I
blab on. As you all should know, my fave swimmers are Daniel Kowalski
and Matthew Dunn. No particular reason I suppose, just that
they've caught my eye in recent times. Matt is a brilliant medley
swimmer whilst Daniel has always been a 'bridesmaid' in his main
events whether it be to Kieren Perkins or Grant Hackett,
so lets hope that backstroke is better suited to him. But by the ages
of 24 and 26, they've already achieved so much, and I admire them for
21st September 1999
Okay, here I go again blabbing on about nothing really. As the year has passed, I have added to my list of fave swimmers. The most prominent addition would have to be American backstroker Lenny Krayzelburg. First spotted him up at the Pan Pacs in Sydney, but I wished I'd heard of him sooner, cos now I'm just one of those 'new' Australian fans acquired at 'that' meet. But he's an ace swimmer with WR's here and there to prove it. And after much thought, I decided to go against my traditional 'oz swimmers only' theme, and add him to my Funkyswim website.
Keeping with the international theme, some other great swimmers are Canada's Joanne Malar, Queen of swimming, American Jenny Thompson, and Republic of South Africa's Breastroker Penny Heyns. They're all brilliant in the events that they compete in and all are going to give the Aussies a run for their money at the Sydney Olympics.
But how can we forget about Australian teen superstars Ian Thorpe and Grant Hackett? They just keep on getting faster and faster smashing world records here and there!
Daniel's been injured lately, so he hasn't had much pool action. When I found out he wouldn't be swimming at the Pan PACs due to his should injury, I was really disappointed, and then I saw him commentating!! I got so hyper, and so excited, and I hit record on my VCR. So now I have these little bits of Dan commentating on video. Probably a waste of space, but, hey!. =] Although I enjoy listening to his commentary, I hope to see him make a huge splash (excuse the pun) as he re-enters oz swimming.
Matt has been at a constant high, doing well at the recent Pan PACs, and I hope he continues to kick some serious international butt. *grin*
With my list of faves forever expanding, I'm finding it hard to keep this site solely about Daniel Kowalski and Matthew Dunn. The only other extension to this site will be the Lenny Krayzelburg section.... and then maybe a picture gallery... oh yeah, and then a sound archive... and a biography section, and then I'll stop. I will... right? let's face it, this site's probably gonna have to get a change of name one day. It will no longer be able to be called 'Funkyswim: a Daniel Kowalski & Matthew Dunn Archive' if I keep adding other stuff to it. It'll probably end up being called "Funkyswim: the everything on anything about swimmers archive"!! I'll try and control myself- I WILL!
-Rosy *smiles* =]
19th January 2000
Well, its the new year, and the start of the 21st Century! This message is gonna be brief. I just wanna say that I'm kicking my self because I taped over a few swimming things that I wanted to keep! Aah! Don't you hate that when that happens?
It's gonna be a great year! With the lead up to the Olympics, things are getting heated in the pool, and are set to stay that way.
1st February 2000
Well, my holidays are over, and It's time for me to knuckle down and
plunge myself into the new school year. This year is an important year
for me, as It's Yr 12; my FINAL year of highschool. So that means that
I'll be studying, doing homework etc.. and probably won't have as much
time to update this site as I use to! I'll continue finding new pics for
your guys to view, but I don't think that I'll be able to give you guys
the latest news and swim meet results. Of course, I'll try and find some
time to do it, but since there are other sites who put up their swimming
times and stuff, there's no hasty need for me to. They'll be more accurate
and prompt than I anyway!
first of all, you have a cool site, I have visited it,thanks!!....as for life after swimming I don't know what I will do. Obviously I have to start thinking about it. TV or marketing would be great. I know I want to remain involved with sport....i am right handed!!. Thanks for your question and support, let all your friends know about the site...till next time Daniel
I was totally psyched! Daniel's been here! I just hope he didn't come during the 'uncool' stages! lol =] *BEAM* & *GRIN!*
3rd July 2000
Well, I've just finished uploading all the new files for the re-vamp of this site, and I must say that I am particularly proud of myself =]
But besides that, I am excited about Daniel carrying the Olympic torch in Melbourne, so hopefully if all goes well, I will be watching him in Pt Melb =]
I have been entering a bunch of comps to try and win tickets to the Olympic games, but so far no luck. For all those who do get to go, send me a review if you would like =]
Can't wait for the Melbourne Telstra Grand Prix meet either! yay!
That's all for now.
21st August 2000
Hey, It's been over 2 weeks since I saw Daniel at Port Melbourne where he lit the community cauldron on board the 'Spirit of Tasmania' as it temporarily left Victorian soil. Whilst eventually it turned out to be a great night, there are many things that went wrong in the lead up to the encounter. Let me take the time to tell you ALL ABOUT IT.
My friend, Nikki and I caught the train into the city and we found our way out of the maze that is Spencer Street Station. After much freaking out in fear that we would board the wrong tram, or at least go in the wrong direction, we found the correct tram to take us to the pier at Port Melbourne. For those who don't know what a tram is, It's a form of light rail public transport. They go along the middle of the road, but they are becoming quite ancient looking as they rattle down the tracks. When we got to Pt Melb, the hour hand on my watch was barely past 5.00pm, and the torch was not due to arrive until 6.25pm.
Of course, at this stage, we had no idea where the torch was going to pass, so we asked an official where the best to stand would be. He had a map and everything, so we thought that he would be a reliable source. We asked him if he knew who would be carrying the torch. "Do you know who Daniel Kowalski is?" he asked us. Duh! I thought quietly to myself as I snuck Nikki a discrete look. He was basically the only reason why we came out, after all, I had seen the flame pass through my suburb the day before.
He told us that a good place to stand would be along this street, so that where we positioned ourselves, but not before we bought some chips from 'Fish D'lish' (or was that 'delish fish'?). Incidentally, we saw the owner, none other than Rex Hunt. The time by then was about 5:50pm, when we overhead one of the other people gathered say "it looks like everyone standing over there.." And sure enough, about 150 meters down the street, another large crowd had gathered. Nikki and I frowned at each other, and we got up slowly, yet full of dread. We trailed down the road, and sure enough the crowd had accumulated. What we had expected was, that the torch was going to enter through a special gate. We couldn't believe it, we had been standing in the wrong position!!
Despite this, we decided to think positively, and we moved up the road. It's okay, we still have a good view. It grew darker and chillier as the time drew closer, and Nikki decide to pull out her camera in preparation. She wound on the film, and wound, and wound. "Ah Rosy, did you bring your camera" she asked me tentatively. I frowned at her and said no, but she already knew the answer. "Rosy, my camera's not working!" It was freak out time! I grabbed the flimsy camera off her, and I pushed the shoot button, but achieved nothing except blinding her with the flash. We were getting desperate, but I had an idea. I remember a convenience store down the road, so I wove my way out of the crowd and took off at a sprint to the shop. I hopefully asked the sales assistant whether they sold disposable cameras, but he shook his head regretfully. "Sorry, we're sold out." Not satisfied with his answer, I went to take a look my self, but that did not make a camera materialise just for me. Dejectedly, I sprinted back to Nikki, pushing my way back through an annoyed crowd and I told her the bad news, swearing "Shit Nik" repeatedly.
There was nothing we could do, so we just waited for Daniel to run past us. But of course, that didn't happen. Instead, some lady ran past us and I kept saying unbelievably "What the heck just happened?" The torch entered a restricted car park, and all we could see nothing except a big boat next to the dock. A few minutes later, a cheer rose amongst the crowd on the other side of the dock, and I overheard someone say, "Isn't that Daniel Kowalski?" Well of course it was!! But we had missed all the action; he ran with the flame onto the 'Spirit of Tasmania', up a flight of stairs, and lit the cauldron. Nicole and I wandered aimlessly about (with her mother in tow whom, we met up with as she was kindly was giving me a lift home). Nikki's mum, who was by now fed up with our complaining and sulking (which by the way we are masters at), decided to take some affirmative action. She walked along the pier, and up a flight of stairs. From a distance we could see a cauldron, as the ship still hadn't left the dock. And then her mum says, "Hey look, I've found him!"
At this stage, I was feeling down, but then I saw Daniel surrounded by a bunch of people, furiously signing autographs, and then I was nervous. After all, I was about to meet one of my heroes! But putting all my emotions aside, I pulled out the picture I wanted signed, and Nikki dragged me in. We had come this far; I was prepared. I gave Nik the texta, and she had Daniel sign her notebook. Some dude called Ahmed (who was Daniel's support runner) snuck in to get his shirt signed, and I took a deep breath. Daniel was barely inches away, and I couldn't turn back now. Daniel turned to me, and took the picture I offered him, and I said "Can you make it to 'x'". He looked up in realisation and said something along the lines of "Ah, x. I was wondering if I was gonna meet someone I knew.." Of course, I was actually in shock that he recognised my name from his web site and Funkyswim, so I don't recall his exact words. We shook hands, and I mumbled something along the lines of "broken camera…. Yeah… thanks… see you next time…" Pretty dumb stuff now that I think back.
None the less, I was pretty much on cloud nine. I did my best to contain myself as I walked away with the autograph in hand
Nik and I took a seat on nearby on the floor and we watched amused as hoards of people swarmed around Daniel for autographs. I watched in envy as they got their photo taken with him. Two pairs of legs, whom I discover later belonged to Chris Anstey and his brother, momentarily blocked my view. Nik and I basked as we observed Daniel inch his way to the staircase. After each autograph and flash of a camera, he would purposely edge further away. Eventually Daniel made his escape, so, it was time for me to also leave.
As we walked down the flight of stairs, back along the pier, and exited the car park, I looked back in hope of another glimpse. But all I saw was the cauldron burning brightly on the 'Spirit of Tasmania.'
Once again this weekend, I have the chance to meet Daniel at the Telstra Grand Prix 3. You can bet that I will leave nothing to chance; I will make sure I have my own camera. Good Luck to both Daniel and Matt at the meet, as it is the last one before the BIG O. (the Olympics!!)
I'll only be able to go to the night sessions, as on both mornings I am extremely busy!! Saturday, I have a Chemistry tutorial (incidentally, I got my Unit 3 exams results back today, and I got an A!!), and on Sunday, I have to do the rounds at the University Open Days. They're supposed to help me decide my future, but I'll be happy if I make it to the end of the year!
If you took the time to read this, thanks very much, as I know that this entry was very lengthy. If you wish to have your own Swim Encounter published on Funkyswim, please feel free to submit your own fan-hero experience. Try not to go on as long as I have, else I may have to edit it to cut it down!
6 January 2001
I don't think I ever told you guys that I finally met Matt Dunn, and Daniel Kowalski once more! What with the whole Olympic excitement and all, it plain got away. But this new encounters section has stirred up some memories.
It was at the Telstra Grand Prix 3 in Melbourne August last year. Although I purchased my tickets a bit late, I still managed to get pretty good seats.. They were front row, but closer to the 50m mark/warm up pool than the starting blocks. But that suited me just fine. That way we could see all the swimmers doing their warm up and cool down laps.. And lotsa photo and autograph opportunities.
On night one, I was able to take some great photos of Simon Cowley, Susie O'Neill, Grant Hackett, Lori Munz & yes.. Daniel Kowalski. Nikki and I were loaded with camera's and film, and there was absolutely no way we were going to let the Pt Melbourne incident reoccur. How it happened was really quite embarrassing. The competition had finished for the evening and all the swimmers had packed up their gear and were leaving the Centre. Autograph seekers such as myself hung around, but since we weren't allowed on deck, we had to stay in the bleachers. On the other side of the pool deck, Daniel had gathered his stuff and stopped to talk some fellow swimmers, and I thought "Great, he'll come this way any second now.."
Oh but no, he headed off the long way around the pool towards the exit. Well, well.. We couldn't very well let him get away now could we? So Nikki and I started calling out "Daniel!" at the top of our lungs. At first he didn't hear us, so the people around us joined in too. He finally turned his head and looked quizzically in our direction. Our arms were waving frantically for him to come over here! The lady next to us yelled out "You're going in the wrong direction!"
So he came over, siged autographs for everyone and even remembered that the last time we met him we didn't have cameras.. so we got a few nice snapshots:
So we went home extremely happy that night, and we were ready for another great night of swimming. This time we had our focus on Matt Dunn.. we were determined. The whole night there was no opportunity what so ever to get his attention. At the end of the evening Matt was getting a massage across the other side of the pool.. so we hung around patiently until he had finished. Actually, i wasn't quite so patient.. and kept asking Nikki "Are you sure that's him? Are you certain!?" About 30 minutes later, he finally got off the table and gathered up his stuff. When he came over we reached down from the bleachers and he autographed some stuff for us. We took photos of him, but in true Rosy fashion, it didn't turn out and instead i got a groovy photo of the rail instead
13 December 2002
Hey.. it's been a while!
What's new? Well after all these years and many failed attempts, i have finally gotten my photo take with Daniel Kowalski!! I've calculated that this has been 4 years in the making, basically since KL98. A tragically long time for what should have been an easy feat.
How did it come about? Well I managed to score what could possibly be the best job ever.. and that was taking photos of the swimmers for the Swimming Victoria website whilst they were here for the Fina World Cup last weekend. I got to roam about pool deck with my funky official swing tag and t-shirt (i even got a media arm band!) and stop the swimmers and ask them for their photo! And on the second evening, Daniel was there presenting the winners with their cheques, and i got introduced to him by Rob who works for SV, and he took the happy snap for me :) *yay*
Officially we are not supposed to annoy the swimmers, so it wasn't like i could just stop Ian Thorpe for his autograph, or ask Grant Hackett to be in a photo with me.. but when it came to Pieter Van Den Hoogenband of the Netherlands.. i couldn't help myself. Hey! The meet had ended and i was getting all nostalgic already, so me and some of the other volunteers cornered him after he finished getting a massage and we asked for autographs and photos. Probably wouldn't have done it for anyone else, but he may not come back to Melbourne again, unlike the Australian team, and after listening to him being interviewed by the media.. he appeared to be a person who wouldn't mind if we stalked him for his autograph! Some of the other big names get a little narky about it :P Anyway, that was my bit of fun and my brush with fame :)
So, I thought I'd give you all an update on what's been happening!
Funkyswim has only been getting updates every now and then.. (If you're on the mailing list you'll know what they are) so apart from news and photo updates, it's basically looked the same the last 2 years. It was definitely time for a bit of a refresher! I've spent the past few weeks giving Funkyswim another makeover, especially since the Olympics are coming around once again.
One thing I just gotta share, is that last year (2003) I got to meet Michael Phelps! He was in Melbourne last November for some swim clinics as well as the Fina World Cup. Once again, I volunteered at the event, and I was able to get his autograph and a photo on the final night. This time I made sure I had the flash set properly and ramped up the resolution!
It's easy to forget just how young he is after seeing him being interviewed by the media. Although he appears less comfortable in the public spot light than his Australian counterpart (I am of course referring to Ian Thorpe when talking about in pool achievements), he seems very gracious. Anyway, that was a great encounter and best of luck to him at the Olympics and in the future :)
On the same note, first of all congratulations to Lenny for making the Olympic team for the 100m backstroke and good luck to him for Athens in August.
If you would like to share your encounter with a swimmer feel free to drop me a line.