Saturday, November 28, 2009

Big Fat Bastard 3

After the very much failed experiment of BFB, or Big Fat Bastard, my first serious attempt at a heavy neckweight, it took me a while to do the whole undertaking of building another one. It's quite hard work, making a neckweight, and i'm lazy. Plus it takes some skills, and i ain't got many.

But then i noticed how much i benefitted from more weight when i borrowed someone else's, so i kinda fiddled around with an old neckweight and put a pouch on it, thus creating BFB2: even fatter. At his heaviest he was 5,96 kilos, and i had to pack 35 times to not bury myself in the floor of the pool. I put it on a slight diet to 5,5-ish, and actually did alright with it, but it was a Frankenstein's monster of a thing. And it kept breaking. And i couldn't really streamline with it.

I never really understood how the Danish built their neckweights, skinny by the shoulders and a big fat lump under the chin, but in Berlin i was fortunate enough to see zen-master Jesper Stechmann make one, and finally understood the procedure. So i got a new moped tyre, used the click-thing from BFB2, cut open BFB2 for the led, used 6 tie wraps, inflated the tyre (that was the trick) to make the lump, wrapped it in 12 meters of electrical tape and had me a new BFB. Took 2 hours, some serious sweating and mild cursing, but in the end it was Big Fat Bastard 3: BFB does Denmark. 5,13 kilos. If it holds up in the pool, i hope to do well with it.

Friday, November 27, 2009



Borrowed a 50 mm lens from Mr. van Reet Pape, am really enjoying messing around with it.

very Dutch sky

Ever since my car, Bernard-Henri, technically died, i've been taking the train and bus more. And of course public transport sucks unwhiped ass, but sometimes it's also quite calming and lovely. Probably couldn't have shot this out of a car.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

the pitbull 140

Had been dreaming about this dive, literally. 140 meters. Somehow i knew it was going to be my next step. Did 130 last friday, and i'd been itching to do more. Been looking forward to going to the pool today so much that i was grumpy the last couple of days, because i wanted to do what i'd dreamt a couple of nights earlier. I'd flown to 140, only coming up because i wanted to save the 150 for the next time. Today, then, was going to be the day.

But then i had to get blood taken -serious injury that was, being stabbed by a sharp metal weapon and drained of life juices- which i managed to survive heroically, but which caused me to take a later train. That train, it turned out, was also the unfortunate means of ending an even less fortunate soul's stay in its physical shape, and the speedy meeting of the two made the most horrible sound and caused an hour and a half delay. By this time my mood was scaring the rest of my brain, and my stomach decided it hadn't had enough to eat and my head found that a good time to start complaining, so it wasn't in the highest of spirits that i eventually came to the pool.

I kinda just wanted a small swim to wash the day off, but my buddies had waited for me, and i knew that i'd only be more pissed off if i didn't at least try. So i did. And oh did my mood make it hard for me. I was going to tease my mood by doing a very slow dive, but my mood almost won, for by the time i turned at 50 and pushed off, it almost made me decide to come up. Almost, because then i told my mood to fuck off and went for 100. At 100 i thought about how easy it is to turn and do a bit more, even with your lungs screaming to get rid of CO2. So i turned, and at that point, the thought came that, even though this was nothing like the dream in which i flew to 140, i might actually get there. So i kept going, semi-relaxed, until i got to 125where i felt my legs getting very heavy and sped up a little. But i knew i was going to make it. I saw the 135 marker below me and did 2 more quick strokes. Came up at 140, maybe 141, but certainly enough. I'd fought, and won by staying calm. 2 minutes and 50 seconds of fighting -this is getting somewhere.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Shit, now i have to do six minutes

At the beginning of the year i was hoping to finally do 150 dynamic, 125 dynamic no fins, and a 6 minute static this year. Instead, i almost burnt out and had to reset. No more diving for numbers. But after a lovely few weeks of training and PB's in dynamic, i felt a bit of an itch to do a long dive without fins today. I'd already been mucking around for more than an hour, so i didn't think i'd do anything seriously, but i checked myself and felt i could do a 100 meter dive in a calm way. So i prepared a little, did the usual breathe-up, and went for it. It was as tough as expected, but also much nicer -almost dreamy. I swam like planned and touched 100, turned and did a bit more. Then a bit more. And then a bit more. I came up because i figured i'd done enough and i was still very present, and was very glad to see i was well past the 125 (hard to tell in a 50 meter pool). I figure it was about 130. Lovely dive.

The only downside is, there's a chance to do a static next month. I might have to train static now.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

C'est tres Julie (et Guillaume aussi)

The most beautiful freediving couple is represented in this week's Paris Match

Photo by some lucky bastard. For more, just click on the subject title of this post.


i say to thee

Messing around since it's the end of the season and Mr. van Reet Pape did an incredible 187:

Sunday, November 15, 2009

a matter of national record

After a 2 year drought in PB's and records and repeatedly swimming into a gigantic 'NO' in my head, i finally managed to get out of the slump i was in freediving wise. I did this by taking a step back instead of continually pushing myself to move forwards. I played safety and let the hunger to dive and compete grow. I then started doing longer dives, not aiming to improve myself in meters, but in mentallity. With this better, more relaxed metallity came the meters, and slowly i got near national record territory again. I fucked up in my first competition coming back, again staring blindly at the bright light of the record which makes the tunnel look so far. But i learned and forgot about records in my next comp, where i immediately did a PB, 2 meters shy of that national record. It looked like that was going to end the year for me and i was fine with that, but then at the very last minute i got a chance to go to Berlin for the 12th Long Night of Apnea. I was nervous as hell before the start, which is a good sign -before the break i was dreading the dives. I visualized, did all the mental preparation i need and learned from the excellent freedivers in my life, and when it was time, i let myself do it. It was a tough dive, but i fought and managed to stay calm nonetheless and came up when i'd done enough. A PB AND a national record. Couldn't have hoped for a better way to end the season. I am a lucky and happy man.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

fly, me, to the moon

The moon was so bright last night that i could shoot it with a thousandst(ststst) of a second's worth of exposure and the aperture cranked up and only then would it not be overexposed and show it's rough patches.

This fly was so dim and dulled by the cold that i could move way close and lean against the window to get the shot this morning.