Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Party Time, Times Two

Neily, the birthday girl

HPP, MJ and Maney


I spent last weekend in San Diego, celebrating my friend Neily’s birthday (photos above), attending the Competitor Endurance Sports Awards and enjoying a few days full of relaxation and training. And of course a bit of shopping – in particular at my favorite boutique, It’s a Luv Thing in Leucadia. In fact, MJ, Neily and I are such fans of Luv Thing that we asked the owner to come on board as an official sponsor of the 2009 gomichellie.com triathlon team. We may like to workout hard and get mighty sweaty and dirty, but we’re also fashion fiends who clean up pretty nicely!

Speaking of fashion, I had planned to share some glamour shots from the awards party, but I committed a major blog faux-pas and forgot to snap the photos. Between juggling a wine glass, an evening bag, a water pistol and a whack-a-monster hammer, the photo opportunities simply got away from me. You see, the ESA takes place at Sea World in San Diego, with the first few hours dedicated to drinking, eating and game-playing in the arcade. There’s nothing quite like watching the top multi-sport athletes in the world compete for stuffed dolphins, orca whales and Sponge-Bob Squarepants dolls.

I played several rounds at the shooting gallery with Craig Alexander and Greg Welch, and not surprisingly, I lost consistently. But I certainly couldn’t begrudge Craig the giant Kung-Fu Panda that he proudly took home to daughter Lucy. I fared much better at the whack-a-monster game, scoring a toy dolphin for my dog and releasing some major aggression on the creepy little pop-up creatures.

Once the games were over, the party moved into the banquet hall, where I had the honor of presenting the Female Offroad Triathlete of the Year award to my dear friend and fearless athlete Melanie McQuaid.

The best speech of the night was a toss-up between cyclist Taylor Phinney - an exceptionally well-spoken eighteen-year-old, sporting perfect comedic timing and sweet white camo compression socks – and motocross-rider-turned-Ironman Ricky James, forced by Bob Babbitt to publicly admit to having a tattoo of a squirrel – reaching for his nuts!

I wish I had the photos to show off the amazing fashion from the evening – but I’m sure they will emerge elsewhere. It’s always interesting to see how the athletes you usually encounter in swim caps, cycling shorts and sweaty run singlets primp up for a night on the town. MJ looked particularly stunning in her black and white floor-length gown, with HPP on her arm in a dashing suit. And I doubt anyone could tell that they both wore compression tights under their black-tie duds!

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